Return to the 2012 Zeitgeist lists
1.2 trillion searches.
What did the world search for in 2012?
Watch the Year In Review
Explore the moments
Take another look at the searches that defined 2012 and compare them to similar searches to see which created more waves.Start Exploring
See search trends from around the world.
- The World
- Czech Republic
- Saudi Arabia
- South Africa
- South Korea
2012 Search Trends The World
- Gangnam Style
- Somebody That I Used to Know by Walk off the Earth
- KONY 2012
- Call Me Maybe featuring Justin Bieber
- Obama vs. Romney Epic Rap Battles of History
- A Dramatic Suprise on a Quiet Square
- Why You Asking All Them Questions?
- Crystallize by Lindsey Stirling
- Facebook Parenting: For the Troubled Teen
- Felix Baumgartner's Supersonic Free Fall
2012 was a year of big moments, from global games to historical elections and everything in between. With this site, we've analysed over one trillion queries to showcase what the world searched for.
How We Did This
We studied an aggregation of over one trillion searches (or queries) that people typed into Google Search this year. We used data from multiple sources, including Google Trends and internal data tools. We filtered out spam and repeat queries to build lists that best reflect the spirit of 2012.
The "trending" queries are the searches that had the highest amount of traffic over a sustained period in 2012 as compared to 2011.
The "most searched" queries are the most popular terms for 2012 – ranked in order of the queries with the largest volume of searches.
Privacy & Security
All the searches we studied are anonymous. No personal information was used.
About The Site
The data here is normalised meaning it represents how many searches this year, relative to the total number of searches over time. This doesn't represent absolute search volume, but searches presented on a scale from 0-100. Each query is divided by the highest point the query reached (100). When we don't have enough data/interest, 0 is shown.
Note: A term can appear high on the "trending" list and still have lower search volume than the other queries.
Our year-end Zeitgeist is just a small sampling of the queries and search trends that we found interesting this year. Go beyond what we've shared here by using these tools to discover more about global and regional search terms over time.
Enter up to five search terms to see relative popularity over time. You can use Trends to compare terms in any language from any country.
The top trending search queries, updated continuously throughout the day.
Find Your Trends
There are a couple Google products that you can use to see your own search trends.
If you've chosen to enable “Web History” in your Google Account, you can get an interesting glimpse at your own web activity, such as top queries and peak activity over time. To try it out, go to your accounts page, on the landing screen, select “go to web history”. From here you can explore your web, image and even your shopping search history . This might not account for all of your web activity, but it can be a fun look back at your query and browsing history over time.
If you use Google Reader to read blogs and RSS feeds, you can view your reading trends by going to the "Trends" tab under "All items" in the left-hand menu.