Trajaan vs. Google Trends: Taking Search Listening To The Next Level

google trends

Why You Should Listen To Online Searchers.

Search listening is all about extracting, collecting, processing, and analyzing online searches that people are typing into their search bar(s). Every Web user does such easy actions on a daily basis when connecting to websites such as Google or Amazon.

For companies and businesses, search queries represent a goldmine of insights. Not keeping an eye on search trends could be risky, as these provide a significant amount of information about what consumers want.

A single online search can have different objectives for a user: looking to buy something, looking for alternatives to a given product, finding a shop near their home, or just getting informed on something. All search queries can be interpreted to decrypt consumer behavior & spot emerging needs.

Google search engine / pizza

Search engines are the real mirrors of the world. Investigating Web users’ queries is like diving directly into users’ psychology, with no bias, deductions, and withholdings. If the Internet is where people connect to others, search engines are where people confess their deepest fears & desires.

If you manage to collect, process & analyze thousands of search queries, your company can stay ahead of your market & launch new targeted offers before your competitors do. 

But search data analytics have become too big & too complex to be made without the proper technology. Let’s review together a few tools to help you extract value from search data. 

Google Trends: The Pioneer.

google trends

On the 5th of August, 2008, Google Insights for Search was launched – as an advanced service to monitor search data trends. On the 27th of September, 2012, Google rebranded Google Insights for Search as Google Trends

Google Trends is a website that analyzes the popularity of top search queries in Google Search across various regions and languages. The website uses graphs to compare the search volume of different queries over time. Google Trends provides access to a large unfiltered sample of actual search requests made to Google. 

Google Trends enables users to get interested in a particular topic from around the globe or down to city-scale geography, in a given country.

Google Trends: a good place to start with search listening

Google Trends is easily accessible and freely available.

The data Google is collecting is valuable because of its continuity and global data collection. 

There is no such thing as a survey providing fresh data each week, across all geographical borders. 

Because Google Search is the most used search engine in the world, Google Trends can represent a good percentage of all people with free access to the Internet.

google trends

A lack of accuracy in search volume estimation

Long story short: Google Trends doesn’t exactly tell you how many searches occurred for your topic, but it does give you a nice proxy.

The main issue with Google Trends is the search data normalization. The following procedure is used to normalize search volumes to the time and location of a query:

  • Each data point is divided by the total searches of the geography and time range it represents to compare relative popularity. Otherwise, places with the most search volume would always be ranked highest.
  • The obtained numbers are then scaled from 0 to 100 based on a proportion of a topic in comparison to all research on all topics.
  • Different regions that show the same search interest for a term don’t always have the same total search volumes.
google trends
Despite what Google Trends says, people in the UK and South Africa do care about the effects of aloe vera during pregnancy.

A lack of depth to detect weak signals

Google Trends does not provide much insight for all queries exceeding 5 terms – which are commonly considered weak signals.

Of course, these searches are rather rare. Yet it is still a limitation in the process, especially considering all the people typing for specific questions:

  • Best French restaurant in Manhattan
  • Is aloe vera good for acne?
google trends
No similar query suggestion, not many geolocated insights ... Despite a significant search volume on that query in the UK.

No comparison with other data sourcces

Google Trends only provides … Google Search data. Which is a good start. But consumers are not using Google only when searching for information online.

Consumers also use other search engines from marketplaces like Amazon, Target, or Fnac – but also local search engines like Naver (in South Korea) or Baidu (in China).

Every international brand or retailer needs to think outside Google to predict what consumers will buy more in a near future.

Trajaan: The First Enterprise Search Listening Platform.

Trajaan has been launched in 2021 to help global brands & consultancies extract strategic value from search engine data. Based on a clear vision: fast-moving consumer expectations can be monitored from large-scale search data analyses. 

Trajaan has been designed to tackle three main issues in the retail and consumer goods industries:

  1. Get alerted of trending needs & emerging competitors in any local market
  2. Define the perfect product mix & merchandising to increase conversions (off & online)
  3. Discover how to adapt content marketing operations at a local scale – depending on local consumer expectations & affinities

Get all your search data unified

unified search data

Think outside the bot! There is a world of search engines beyond Google. 

With Trajaan, you can blend all the alternative search engine data sources such as Amazon, Baidu, or Bing (the second search engine in North America – and even your 1st-party data sources.

Map thousands of queries searched by consumers

Trajaan / Queries

Trajaan connects to multiple service providers to generate lists of all similar topics driving online interest. Our algorithms guarantee the identification of more than 95% of the volume of search queries associated with a market. Trends on 5 keywords are good. Over 5000 is better!

Tracking thousands of search queries is good to be sure you get a big picture of your market – but it can lead to time-consuming analyses if you consider monitoring each query one after the other. 

Think macro, not micro! The best strategy is to group similar queries – to get analyses for each group of queries.

Enterprise search listening solutions like Trajaan provide the best artificial intelligence to group similar queries based on topic or semantic proximity. 

Keep control of data quality

Trajaan / data quality checker

Trajaan contains specific algorithms to identify duplicate queries – before you get access to your analytics dashboard: 

  • Typos: queries that are too similar, like typos or singular/plural
  • Volume clusters: queries whose search volume is considered identical by Google or Amazon, as search intent is allegedly the same (e.g. PSG & Paris Saint-Germain)
  • Volume modified: queries whose volume has been modified over time by Google – thus providing “false positives” in trend detection or alerting

Get the right signals & alerts

Trajaan / Trends

With Trajaan, you just get automated reports on-demand, when you need them. 

Our platform provides simple access to a large set of charts and data tables co-constructed with leading references in the strategy consulting world. 

Our analytics framework is to make trend detection easier, with a built-in growth matrix, rankings of geolocations with higher affinity for your brand and products – or seasonality effect analysis. 

Consider our platform as a cockpit to monitor in real-time fast-moving consumer expectations. Take a look, see from above & be prepared for your next strategic move!

In this article

Versus analysis



google trends
  • Free
  • Simple to use
  • Useful to test if a query is a strong signal in multiple countries
  • No exact search volume (index from 0 to 100)
  • Comparison is limited to 5 different search terms
  • No weak signal analysis
  • No built-in analytics for market research (emerging brands, top regions in Winter …)
Trajaan logo / white
  • Multisource (Google, Amazon, 1st-party data…)
  • Query discovery
  • Query segmentation
  • AI for data quality
  • Built-in KPIs
  • Alerting scripts
  • Pro Services
  • More complex: onboarding session is required
  • Easy to get lost in the ocean of data facts
  • More expensive

Learn what's happening before others

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Trajaan search listening platform


Consumer insights

Discover what people want to buy or learn online.

Content planning

Get all teams aligned on search channel opportunities.

Retail strategy

Adapt your merchandising to local trends.

Strategy consulting

Serious data for due diligence & market research.

See also: Healthcare