What People Search For

19 november 2002, 20:27

You spent hours fine-tuning your pages to improve your search engine position. Did you make certain to misspell a few of those crucial words? The people searching certainly will. Misspellings, along with X-rated search requests, are common. Read more to get a glimpse at some of the searches the great Internet public is making.

Some might be outdated – please let me know if you have additional links.

AltaVista Real Searches


You can see real time searches on the AltaVista web index here, as well as in other areas such as image searching.

Ask Jeeves Peek Through The Keyhole


Shows top searches at this popular question answering search engine.

MetaCrawler MetaSpy


Choose to see either a filtered or non-filtered sample of top, real-time search terms from this popular meta search service.

Search.com Snoop


Shows recent searches on this popular metasearch service.

Kanoodle Search Spy


Live display of searches on this pay-for-placement search engine.

Galaxy StarGazer


Shows top searches on the Galaxy search engine.

Fireball LiveSuche


Fireball is one of Germany’s major search services. This page lets you see, in German, what people are searching for. Hier k?nnen Sie live sehen, was gerade in Fireball gesucht wird.

Yahoo Shopping: What’s Selling Now


Live glimpse into what people are buying at the Yahoo’s shopping site.

Top Keyword Lists & Keyword Databases



The WordTracker service offers the ability to research what people are searching for via the popular meta search services of MetaCrawler and Dogpile. It provides access to query logs stretching back for two months, which amounts to 350 million queries or 40 million unique search terms. The database is also kept constantly updated, with new data added each week. (Search Engine Watch members have access to an in-depth review of this service.)

Overture (GoTo) Search Term Suggestion Tool


The link takes you to the Overture (formerly GoTo) sign-up page. On the right-hand side of the page, in the “Tools” area, click on the “Search Term Suggestion Tool” link. A new window will open. Enter a term you wish to research, and you’ll be shown how many searches were done for that term and other terms that include it, for the previous month. If the link fails to work (Overture moves it around), then you may need to open an account to access the tool.

Google AdWords Keyword Suggestion Tool


Like Overture’s tool above, this shows top queries related to the terms you input, though it doesn’t provide guidance as to frequency. You’ll find a link to the tool in the Pricing and Minimum Clickthrough Requirements, Part 4, of the AdWords FAQ page.

Espotting Keyword Generator


Allows you research term popularity over the past 30 days across Espotting’s UK paid listings network. To reach the generator, look for the “Keyword Generator” link just about the sign-up form.

Lycos 50

Forget live search displays. Lycos has realized that all our searches can make for great content, if assembled correctly. The Lycos 50 shows top searches each week, plus glimpses at what’s up-and-coming from the query logs, along with other features. Extremely well done—make it a regular visit!

Yahoo Buzz Index


Shows you what’s hot and what’s not in terms of search topics at Yahoo. You can see both “Leaders,” what’s currently popular, and “Movers,” what’s rising in popularity.

Google Zeitgeist


This provides a look at what people are searching for at Google.

Disturbing Search Requests


Designed to allow people to share the strange, unusual or disturbing ways that visitors came to their web sites via searches at search engines. Be aware that some of the examples shared may contain sexually-graphic terms.

Marco Derksen
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Oprichter/partner Upstream, Marketingfacts, Arnhem Direct, SportNext, TravelNext, RvT VPRO, Bestuur Luxor Live, social business, onderwijs, fotografie en vader!


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