Trends Top Charts

Top Charts overview

How Top Charts data is created

Availability

About Google Trends Top Charts

Google Trends Top Charts present lists of real-world people, places and things ranked in order of search interest. For example, you can see a list of the top ten most searched actors on Google during the past month. Much like Google's Year-End Zeitgeist, the Top Charts feature showcases the topics that have captured our attention in a given time and place. We've built on Knowledge Graph technology to deepen the data you can explore. Now you can pinpoint search interest by category to a specific month going all the way back to 2004, and the data updates dynamically throughout the year.

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How does the technology behind Top Charts work?

Top Charts relies on technology from the Knowledge Graph to identify when search queries seem to be about particular real-world people, places and things. The Knowledge Graph enables our technology to connect searches with real-world entities and their attributes. For example, if you search for ice ice baby, you're probably searching for information about the musician Vanilla Ice or his music. Whereas if you search for vanilla ice cream recipe, you're probably looking for information about the tasty dessert. Top Charts builds on work we've done so our systems do a better job finding you the information you're actually looking for, whether tasty desserts or musicians.

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How is Top Charts different than Hot Searches?

Hot Searches is different than Top Charts in a few ways. First, Hot Searches highlights queries that jumped significantly in traffic, whereas Top Charts highlights topics with high overall search volume. Second, Hot Searches is built on realtime data, so it can surface trending topics that are spiking as recently as a half-hour ago. We hope to add realtime data to the rest of Top Charts, but for now the best place to see realtime trends is in Hot Searches.

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How accurate is the list ranking?

Ultimately, it's impossible to know the true intention behind a search query without asking our users directly. Top Charts relies on the best possible technology at Google to algorithmically predict interest in particular real-world people, places and things. We count estimated interest in entities (eg first lady obama would count as a search for Michelle Obama), we don't only count exact-match search strings (eg the search Michelle Obama).

We've been making these predictions since 2004 with the annual Google Zeitgeist, and with the Knowledge Graph, we have a new and improved system to make better predictions. We conduct ongoing testing and evaluation to make sure the rankings shown in Top Charts reflect the real interests of our users. While no algorithm is perfect, we believe the rankings shown in Top Charts are our most accurate to-date.

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How does Google curate Top Charts?

Top charts relies on the Knowledge Graph, and we're constantly tuning the Knowledge Graph to make sure it has the most accurate facts and information. In addition, with Top Charts we face challenges because some people, places and things aren't a great fit for the list, though they are technically true. For example, Joe Biden played college football, but should he be at the top of a list of Football players? We are willing to remove entries from a list when those entries are not primarily or significantly associated with the category. Finally, we're also willing to remove entries from our lists when we identify a clear bug in our query classification systems.

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How does Google decide which Top Charts to create?

We're interested to offer Top Charts across categories and topic areas. In general, we listen carefully to user feedback. In addition, before we'd publish any chart, we put the list through a rigorous evaluation process to ensure the data we're presenting is as accurate as we can make it.

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What time interval do the rankings reflect?

You have the option to select rankings based on durations you choose. You can choose to see overall rankings for an entire year or month, and you can go back and see rankings from as early as 2004.

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How does the technology behind Top Charts compare with the methodology behind Google's annual Zeitgeist?

Top Charts is a significant improvement on the methodology behind Google's Year-End Zeitgeist. By building on the foundation of the Knowledge Graph, we've automated systems that used to require extensive manual curation and review.

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Where is Top Charts available?

Users anywhere in the world can use Top Charts, but we're starting off with charts based on search volumes in the US. We'll launch new regions and categories as soon as we're confident enough in the data quality. In general, since our feature is built on a foundation of the Knowledge Graph, we'll only be able to launch in countries once the Knowledge Graph is available locally. Even then, we'll conduct additional quality evaluation to make sure the data we'd present is of high-enough quality.

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