The Google India top searches list for 2014 is out and it has two big learnings for the country. One, we as a country still search for URLs instead of typing them directly on the address bar and two, despite the appeal of BJP star campaigner turned Prime Minister Narendra Modi, we are still searching more for Sunny Leone.
The Google Year in Search offers a unique perspective on the year’s biggest interests, major events, and hot searches that ruled the web in India. 2014 was the year that underlined that an online presence matters if you are a prime ministerial candidate, a political party or the local dhaba. So it was no surprise that the term Elections 2014 topped Google India’s trending lists this year.
However, Prime Minister Narendra Modi was just the second most searched personalities this year, coming behind of Bollywood import Sunny Leone but ahead of Bollywood export Salman Khan. Strangely, Leone does not find a place is most searched female actors in Bollywood.
The top searches across categories were all for websites, leading with IRCTC and Flipkart, showing that there is something intrinsically wrong with the way we search. These are all destinations that can be reached without any help from Google or any other search engine.
As expected topping the trending searches were sports tournaments such as FIFA World Cup 2014, Indian Premier League 2014 and even the iPhone 6, which most of us tend to write off as too expensive to trend anywhere in India. Cricket is second only to Bollywood in trending searches. A Google release said the death of Sunanda Pushkar and the unsolved mystery of Malaysia Airlines 370 also generated search curiosity.
Rajan Anandan, Managing Director, Google India, said the findings of Google’s Year in Search is a clear testimony of India’s growing interest in issues of national importance.
“The 2014 Lok Sabha elections pointed to the power of digital media and also to the unprecedented demand for information. These elections were fought as much on India’s dusty plains as it was on digital platforms, including social media such as Google Hangouts and YouTube. We’ve seen an exponential increase in the number of Internet searches this year, not just on desktops but also smartphones, a trend that is reflective of India’s growing digital emergence as the next billion Indians begin to embrace the power of the Internet,” he said.
The big surprise seems to be thriller Ragini MMS 2 emerging as the most searched-for movie. Maybe, we have Leone to thank for that as well.