Google Data Tool Helps Brands Understand Changing Consumer Behaviors Since COVID-19

Google on Thursday will launch an interactive tool to help brands understand rapidly rising retail categories in Google Search, the locations where they are growing, and the queries associated with them.

The Rising Retail Categories tool -- found on Think with Google -- surfaces changes in consumer behavior as it changes rapidly based on the COVID-19 pandemic.

“Last month, we saw spikes in search interest for household supplies and jigsaw puzzles as people spent more time at home,” Pallavi Naresh, Product Manager at Google, wrote in a post. “This month we’ve seen surging interest for sewing machines and baking materials in the US, and tetherball sets and chalk in the United Kingdom and Australia.”

It’s the first time Google will provide this type of information for brands in an effort to help them understand how consumer interests have changed since the beginning of COVID-19.

Google Trends, social listening, surveys, and their own data are some other tools that brands typically use to help them make decisions based on consumer interests. Now they have a new tool.

Companies that had the opportunity to preview the tool had creative ideas for how they might apply it.

Some mentioned content creation or promotional efforts, while others said product and service ideas, Naresh wrote.

There are numerous ways to use the tool. When a cookware company noticed that “flour” was a growing category in the United States, for example, the team explores partnering with a famous local chef to create engaging content about recipes that incorporate flour.

A jewelry and accessories company noted rising interest in products in the “free weights” category, so the team partnered with fitness influencers who could help promote their products.

Google plans to update the tool with fresh data daily during the next few months.

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