The death in August of Robin Williams made the actor the top trending search term of the year both in the US and globally, says Google in its 2014 Year in Search report, marking the third consecutive year that the passing of an iconic (albeit in different respects) figure was the top trending search topic. Unlike in years past, though, 2014 did not feature a tech device in the top trending topics, though news events figured prominently.
Following Robin Williams, the year’s top trending search topics in the US were:
- World Cup;
- Malaysian Airlines;
- Flappy Bird;
- ALS Ice Bucket Challenge;
- Frozen; and
Eight of the top 10 search trends from the US also appeared on the list of top trending search terms globally. The only two top trending topics from the US that were not on the global list were Ferguson (#8) and Ukraine (#10), replaced by Conchita Wurst (#7 on the global list) and the Sochi Olympics (#10).
In terms of global news, Ebola and ISIS were the top trending topics, followed by Malaysia Airlines, Crimea/Ukraine and Ferguson.
Below, a brief selection of top-5 lists from around the world and in the US (trending search unless otherwise noted).
- Consumer Electronics – Global
1. iPhone 6
2. Samsung Galaxy S5
3. Nexus 6
4. Moto G
5. Samsung Note 4
- People – Global
1. Jennifer Lawrence
2. Kim Kardashian
3. Julie Gayet
4. Tracy Morgan
5. Renee Zellweger
- IPOs – US
1. Alibaba IPO
2. GoPro IPO
3. King Digital IPO
4. Virgin America IPO
5. Castlight Health IPO
- Places on Google Maps – US (note: most searched, not trending)
5. Home Depot
- TV Shows – US
1. Game of Thrones
2. True Detective
3. Orange is the New Black
4. The Following
5. American Horror Story
Other Year-in-Review Lists
Of course, Google was one of several properties to take a look at the year past. Below is a brief rundown of some of the highlights from other such lists, with a link to each.
- The Ebola Virus Outbreak was the most discussed topic in the US on Facebook, according to the social network’s look back, while Disney Properties topped the list of most discussed places.
- Ellen’s selfie from the Oscars was the year’s “Golden Tweet,” per Twitter’s year in review, which also notes that the World Cup was the biggest sports story of the year.
- Ebola was the top search term of the year on Yahoo, in a list dominated by celebrities.
- The World Cup was the most searched for news story on Bing in 2014, ahead of the Super Bowl, the missing Malaysian Airlines jet, the Winter Olympics, and the rise of ISIS. The Ebola outbreak came in at number 8 on this list.
- AT&T’s “themobilemovement” had the top sponsored post of the year on Tumblr. Tumblr’s list of other top posts is available here.
- Marketers from PwC occupied 4 of the top 10 slots on LinkedIn’s list of the 10 most engaged marketers on the professional social network.
- Finally, rather than take a look back at 2014, Pinterest is aiming at 2015 with its list of 100 trending pins for 2015.