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Yahoo! Clues Offers an Inside Look at Trending Search Patterns




Yahoo! is coming on strong this week with several announcements that prove they are well and truly still in the game. Today, they’ve unveiled the beta test of Yahoo! Clues and I could play in this one all day.

Yahoo! Clues is designed to help you data-mine trending search terms. When you research a term, you’re presented with a graph that shows the highs and lows of the trend over the past week or month. It then breaks down the search into gender, age, income and location and it offers additional search terms along with actual search paths that people have taken.

I put the application to the test by searching the name of my favorite TV actor, Jensen Ackles. Right off the bat I can see that he’s searched for pretty consistently with small peaks right after his show Supernatural airs or during the week when new promo clips come out. Most of his searchers are women, no surprise there, with the majority under the age of 35.

The trending graph can be a little misleading at first glance. It isn’t designed to show how many people have searched but to give you a look at the ebb and flow. Thus the top of the chart represents the moment in time when more people searched based on any other moment over the past week.

Moving into the gender and age section, you can click on each breakdown and get the most prevelant search terms based on that group. I was surprised to find that mostly men searched “Jensen Ackles married” — I assume they’re looking for photos of his lovely wife. And I was a bit creeped out to see that the top search term for men over 55 was “Jensen Ackles Shirtless.” Okay, moving on.

Below all that you’ll find income and location stats. Location can be broken down into city segments. The data filters out population differences in order to present a ranked list that is based on interest. And even after watching five seasons on Numb3rs, I’m sure I didn’t explain that mathematical magic properly.

At the bottom of each page you find search paths that show what people searched before and after the target. This is where the real gold lies because it shows you routine misspellings and misconceptions such as people searching “So You Think You Can Dance,” when they were looking for “Dancing with the Stars.”

Overall, I think Yahoo! Clues is a fascinating look at what people are searching for, all brought together in an easy to digest, usable manner. By drilling down through each of the data pockets, you can locate popular keywords you may have missed and fine tune your niche sites and SEO in order to grab those extra eyeballs.

You can try Yahoo! Clues by visiting: http://clues.yahoo.com.. I think it has real possibilities when it comes to fine tuning your search marketing. What do you think?

  • http://www.freepublicassistance.com Mike

    Cool find! Thanks for providing this information and link over to clues. I am going to check it out live right now!