Trendy India defies the rest of the world – huh!

Click on each link to pull up the Google Trends report.

  1. In India, Movies have always been more popular than TV. The trend is almost always the reverse in all the other countries where both searches are popular.
  2. Rang De Basanti was a lot more popular than Kabhi Alvida Na Kehna.
  3. Blogs are more popular than newspapers with the online community in India. Only a few other countries exhibit this trend. Update: The trend report for the search term ‘blog’ versus ‘newspaper’ refutes this conclusion, look at the comments for more on using Google Trends reliably.
  4. BSNL and AirTel are the most searched of telecom providers in India. Hutch is a close third and is very popular in West Bengal, while AirTel rules the North.
  5. Searches for Naukri edge out searches for Monster by a close margin. Both trend lines reveal a lot more Indians are going online to look for jobs.
  6. Shah Rukh Khan is more searched than Aamir Khan by online users. Interestingly, more searches for Shah Rukh Khan originated from Rabat, Morocco, than Delhi, India. Amitabh Bachchan does not make much of a dent here. Update: Prateek also suggests that one take into account different ways of spelling – e.g. ‘Shah Rukh’ also becomes ‘Shahrukh’.
  7. Sachin Tendulkar beats Rahul Dravid as far as online trends goDhoni makes a surprise climb up the ranks.
  8. The online community can’t decide between Sonia Gandhi and Manmohan Singh. On the day of Singh’s appointment to the PM’ship of India, the trend was very different. Pervez Musharraf is eclipsed by the turbaned Indian Prime Minister.
  9. Only for a little while – Football was more popular than Cricket. You guessed it right, the timing coincided with the FIFA world cup, 2006.
  10. Searches for the keyword Matrimony outnumbered searches for Shaadi. Update: Prateek also suggests having a look at the report for ‘marriage ‘ and ‘wedding’ which are much higher than the other two terms.
  11. Mutual Funds are more popular than Shares. The search volumes are the highest in India. Update: The report on ‘stocks’ reveals one more story. In contrast to the rest of the world, the online populace from India still prefer Mutual Funds.
  12. Karan Johar will be happy to hear that he has finally overtaken Mithun as far as online searches go!
  13. IIM’s are catching up to the IIT’s in popularity.
  14. While global interest in GPRS is declining, GPRS interest in India remains just about the same for the last 3 years. Meanwhile, interest in AirTel keeps going climbing. Is India going to be over GPRS even before it can catch on?
  15. Tandoor is just as popular as Chaat or Halwa. Of course, Chaat Cafe (San Jose) has both Chaat and Tandoor, something you won’t see often in India! Update: Prateek points out that a report comparing ‘tandoori’, ‘tandoor’, ‘chaat’, ‘halwa’ would be more on target with tandoori coming out on top.
  16. Goa is much more popular than Himachal, search volumes predict a lot of tourists from the UK in Goa this year.
  17. Google searchers search for India more than its rival China. The pleasures of democracy 🙂 or is this the Baidu effect?

Inspired by: Micro Persuasion: 25 things I learned from Google Trends.

Disclaimer: Google Trends is only a tool. Any conclusions you can draw from the trend reports is at your own risk.


4 Comments on “Trendy India defies the rest of the world – huh!”

  1. […] Santosh Dawara uses Google Trends to demonstrate how certain trends in India are in contrast with the rest of the world, while unearthing some other amusing facts. […]

  2. Prateek says:

    Interesting analysis but some dangerous assumptions. Note that I don’t agree or disagree with your conclusions, just pointing out some flaws
    1) Who searches for ‘TV’ anyway? Wouldn’t you type in a channel or a show?
    3) Try changing ‘newspapers’ to ‘newspaper’. The result is reversed. Wouldn’t most people type in the name of a newspaper?
    6) Also need to consider different ways of spelling- e.g. ‘Shahrukh’, ‘Amir’ etc.
    ‘Amitabh’ is neck-and-neck with ‘Shahrukh’ in India, but that is not the case outside India.
    10) ‘marriage’ and ‘wedding’ trump both of those
    11) ‘stocks’ beat both shares and mutual funds
    12) Kolkata and Pune still holding strong! 🙂
    13) No real trend here except that the volume of searches jumps exponentially whenever there’s a controversy.
    15) ‘tandoori’ is head and shoulders above everything else

  3. […] In India, movies have always been more popular than TV and blogs are more popular than newspapers with the online community. DesiPundit points to Santosh Dawara who uses Google Trends to demonstrate “how certain trends in India are in contrast with the rest of the world”. […]

  4. Santosh says:

    Hi Prateek,
    I believe Google Trends will only compare search term frequencies, so drawing any conclusions from the reports is at your own risk.
    Also note that Google stems searches. So ‘newspapers’ might also result in a search for just ‘newspaper’, similarly ‘blogs’ are stemmed to just ‘blog’. Here is a trend report for ‘newspaper’ versus ‘newspapers’. Search frequency for ‘newspaper’ is always higher than ‘newspapers’ – possibly due to stemming. Nevertheless, notice that the two trend lines follow each other closely.
    Then of course there are searches for synonyms, other variants and like you pointed out – why would a consumer search for ‘TV’. For the same reasons, why just search for ‘movies’? And yet, here is another trend report for ‘movies’, ‘films’, ‘cinema’. The report clearly shows the only safe conclusion is each trend line itself – don’t rely on the volumes.
    Finally, here is another trend report comparing the search terms ‘TV’, ‘Television’, ‘ESPN’, and ‘Star’. The report clearly shows people do search for TV. Here too, there is more than what simply meets the eye. Could it be that Google treats a search for ‘Star TV’ and ‘TV’ as the same?
    Again, draw conclusions at your own risk :). Thank you for your observations and for stopping by!
    – Santosh