Google Year In Search

A Look Inside Google’s Year in Search 2021

Written by our PR intern and university student Bridie Buckingham

This year, more than ever, the world is searching for “How to Heal.”

Google premiered its 2021 ‘Year in Search’ film in 50+ languages worldwide. The highly anticipated short is built from Google Trends data highlighting the world’s most asked questions and most searched topics this year.

Take a look at what was revealed.

Last year, Google’s ‘Year In Search’ asked “why?” more than any other time in history. This year, the process of reflecting on the global events that have changed the world forever began. The challenges and tragedy of recent years became an opportunity to summon collective strength. It became a time to embrace scars and come back stronger than before.

We asked “how to honour someone?”

We asked “how to take care of your mental health?”

And we asked “how to be strong?”

There was a clear theme to this year’s searching. With all of us fighting our own battles, big or small, the desire to overcome was evident. Reflected in our Google searches, the motivation to get better, and to do better, was an important factor in our actions throughout 2021.

It goes without saying that various questions surrounding the pandemic featured in the top searches. “Will there be another lockdown?” and “when can I get the vaccine?” featured heavily as well as the heart wrenching “when can I visit my family?”.

2021 saw the return of (semi)normal life. Shops reopened, businesses began to recover, and sports, music, and theatre made a comeback. Clearly the search for “how to be resilient” was fruitful.

Spending a lot of time with ourselves also made many of us introspective. Searches for “how to be yourself” and “what is my purpose?” appeared frequently and with the coming out of Elliot Page and others this year as well as the outpouring of love and acceptance, 2021 has seen a lot of people step into their own.

Despite this, it was not all of us who felt the love. Searches for “how to move forward” and “stop Asian hate” spoke of the vast amount of people suffering from the world’s unkindness. With racist abuse targeting the BLM protests and Asian communities, many felt the need to turn for help.

Searches for “how to use my voice” also increased with many of us wondering how we can make a difference and use our voices to implement change and raise awareness for causes near and dear to us.

“How to help our planet”, “ways to help your community” and “how to be hopeful” round out the top searches and bring back a bit of positivity. With the influence of COP26 and the evident climate change we experienced in lockdown, people are looking for ways to help our planet as well as give back to their local community who supported them through the last year and a half.

Currently, the world is searching for “how to be hopeful” and I think that is very poignant, especially now. We have made it through the trials and tribulations 2021 has thrown at us, and while some of us have taken to looking forwards, many of us are looking inwards.

Let’s hope for the best for 2022. For ourselves and for the world.

Stay safe.


Photo by Pixabay from Pexels