Yahoo! Clues: A New Keyword Tool

By Joe


Yahoo! Clues can provide helpful insight on the demographics of people searching for a given term in addition to providing other trends and related searches. In this presentation, I’ll walk through a comparison looking at the trends of two popular holiday items, the Playstation 3 versus Xbox 360. The first area you will come to when you land on the Yahoo! Clues page is a section called, “Find Trends” that allows you to enter either 1-2 terms that you would like to find more information on. When you’ve entered the terms, hit the “Discover” button and you will see a range of demographic data for each term.

The first section of charts you’ll notice is the “Searches Over Time” area, where you can select to view the search trends over the past day, week, or month. The search volume shown on the graph is based out of 100 points, with the 100 marker representing the point or points over that time period with the highest search volume and the 0 marker representing the point or points over the time period with the lowest search volume. When you are comparing two terms against each other, you will be able to also see the more popular term based on the graphs, where in this case the Xbox 360 is clearly the more popular term.

The next section you will see is the demographic comparison, where you can look at the age and gender of the search users. In this example we can see that both gaming consoles are more popular with males in each age range and that both tend to be extremely popular in age groups under 45. In case you are wondering, this information is taken from people using Yahoo! Search.

The next section will show an income distribution based on the search term(s). Here we can see that the best income segment to target would be people with income under $50,000, as this accounts for more than 95% of people searching both terms. Income information is calculated by Yahoo! using a Yahoo! searcher’s zip code information paired with census income data.

The next section will display a map and a chart of locations in the US where the greatest amount of searches took place. It is also possible to click on the state and have it break down further to see the cities with the highest search volume. In order to make sure that the more populous regions aren’t always taking the top positions, Yahoo! Clues will adjust accordingly for the population differences between states.

The final sections you will come to are the “Search Flow” section and the “Related Searches”. The Search Flow area will show the most likely queries that people search for either prior to or following the current query you have entered. For example, someone who is searching for PS3 may next perform a search for PS3 price. The “Related Searches” sections will list several search terms that are related to the term being analyzed. Both of these section can provide helpful keyword information when you are trying to expand your keyword selection for related terms. The information used in these sections come from user search patterns and other Yahoo! search data.