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Google Planner vs Google Trends

Visitor ✭ ✭ ✭
# 1
Visitor ✭ ✭ ✭

Comparing results for a couple search terms between Trends and Adwords, I see some discrepancies. Comparing "cough" to "asthma", for example: trends shows an average interest for the US of 49 for "cough" and 30 for "asthma" (i.e., "cough" is searched substantially more than "asthma"). 

 

Comparing the same two words on Adwords, i see average monthly searches of approximately 27,000 for "cough" and 135,000 for "asthma". 

 

It seems to me that this discrepancy may exist because Adwords reports volumes for paid clicks rather than total searches. First, is this the case? Second, I am far more interested in total searches -- is there any way to see total searches through Adwords (or any other service) versus paid clicks?

 

thanks

2 Expert replyverified_user

Trends and Adwords discrepancies

Visitor ✭ ✭ ✭
# 2
Visitor ✭ ✭ ✭

I am essentially wondering about the discrepancies I'm seeing between search volumes and search rates between adwords and Trends. Below I have search volumes from Adwords for several health related words, and search rates from Trends for the same words. Both are comparing average searches over the last 12 months for the entire US. 

 

An example of my concern is easy to see with "COPD" vs. "asthma". Adwords shows that COPD is searched more than asthma, but Trends shows that the search rate for asthma is much higher than COPD.

 

What's going on here? I have a feeling that the Adwords search volume is not exactly the number of people that are searching the word, but has something to do with advertising, competition for the keyword, or something like that. Can't find much in the way of information to figure it out, however. If this is the case, is there a way to get data from adwords on actual search volumes for specific terms?

 

thanks

 

adwords_searches.jpgtrends_searches.jpg

Re: Google Planner vs Google Trends

Google Employee
# 3
Google Employee

Re: Google Planner vs Google Trends

Top Contributor
# 4
Top Contributor

Hi;
The difference is that while "trends" data is normalized Adwords reports actual figures. You cannot compare between the two.
Read more:
https://support.google.com/trends/answer/4365533?hl=en

Moshe, AdWords Top Contributor , Twitter | Linkedin | Community Profile | Ad-Globe
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Re: Google Planner vs Google Trends

Top Contributor
# 5
Top Contributor
Ohhh... Please avoid multiple postings on the same topic..
I merged the discussions.
Moshe, AdWords Top Contributor , Twitter | Linkedin | Community Profile | Ad-Globe
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Re: Google Planner vs Google Trends

Visitor ✭ ✭ ✭
# 6
Visitor ✭ ✭ ✭
Sorry for the duplicate posts, I thought I figured out a better way to explain the problem so I posted again (should've posted it on the same thread).

I understand that the Trends data is normalized, but comparing relative search rates here should still be valid, unless I'm misinterpreting something here; if the average value Trends reports for "asthma" is higher than the value it reports for "COPD" for the same time period and location (when comparing terms, as I have done above), it does suggest that "asthma" is searched more, on average, relative to "COPD", does it not? If so, Adwords seems to contradict this.

thanks again

Re: Google Planner vs Google Trends

Top Contributor
# 7
Top Contributor
No. The average of "trends" is normalized, while the average of Adwords is not.
Read the link I provided.
Moshe, AdWords Top Contributor , Twitter | Linkedin | Community Profile | Ad-Globe
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Re: Google Planner vs Google Trends

Visitor ✭ ✭ ✭
# 8
Visitor ✭ ✭ ✭
The link provided describes how Trends normalizes the searches when compared across locations. This process is easy to understand -- they essentially divide by the total number of searches for each location, such that you're comparing search rates across locations, where everything is measured relative to the location with the highest search rate.

What I'm doing is comparing searches across terms (within the same location -- US -- and time period -- past 12 months). Here, the total number of searches component becomes irrelevant, because it's the same for every term (because they're all measured in the same location and time period), but everything is apparently normalized by the search term with highest search rate -- such that the term that is searched most has the highest value. Unfortunately, I haven't been able to find any documentation explaining how exactly Google does the normalization for this type of query, but this how it seems to be working.

In further support of my previous statements (the search rate for "asthma" seems to be higher than "COPD" in Google Trends), I am able to get data on many more small metro areas for terms like "asthma" or "cough" that have relatively higher search rates reported on Google Trends, suggesting that the search volume is high enough that they hit Google's threshold for data reporting. But, many of these terms are showing relatively low search volumes on Adwords.


Anyone able to give me a little further insight into what's going on here?

thanks again.

Re: Google Planner vs Google Trends

Top Contributor
# 9
Top Contributor
You cannot compare normalized data to real data (Adwords) - The baseline is different!.
And since Google does NOT disclose the normalization formula, you are trying to "compare apples to oranges"...
Moshe, AdWords Top Contributor , Twitter | Linkedin | Community Profile | Ad-Globe
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Re: Google Planner vs Google Trends

[ Edited ]
Top Contributor
# 10
Top Contributor

Oh... And another point;

Note that "the average monthly searches" in Adwords represents only queries in which the search query excaly matched the keywords. In other words: when a search query was matched to a synonym of a keyword - this does not count.

 

This, however, should not change  the underlying / fundamental mathematics: trends represents  the "vector" / trajectory (of search queries),  while Adwords reports real data.

Moshe, AdWords Top Contributor , Twitter | Linkedin | Community Profile | Ad-Globe
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