Top Google searches 2009: why the UK would love a bargain celebrity-endorsed swine flu remedy

306 google.jpgThe time has come. Once a year Google delves into its information treasure trove and coughs up a few nuggets of trivia to amuse us simple netizens.

Yesterday, they revealed the UK’s most searched terms of 2009, along with a look back at the hottest topics of the “noughties”, as seen through Google searches across the country

The 2009 lists show that Britons were particularly interested in celebrities, bargains, and swine flu this year. So, thinking logically – a cut-price celebrity endorsed swine flu remedy would make a killing on SEO, if such a thing ever existed.

Celebs searched for included the living: Lady Gaga and Susan Boyle, but also the sadly deceased: Stephen Gately, Jade Goody, and Michael Jackson.

Otherwise people were looking for web services: Facebook, eBay and Spotify or bargains – cheap holiday options in particular – these all featured on 2009’s fastest rising searches.

Given the goldmine of information that Google is sitting on, as the most popular search engine in the world, owner of the most popular video site youtube and of webmail service gmail, the lists below are peanuts but still interesting.

Anyone can explore search patterns in more detail at

A look back at the noughties (the hottest topic for each year):
• 2001: notradamus
• 2002: spiderman
• 2003: prince charles
• 2004: big brother
• 2005: james blunt
• 2006: steve irwin
• 2007: iphone
• 2008: iplayer
• 2009: stephen gately

Top searches 2009

1. facebook
2. bbc
3. youtube
4. hotmail
5. games
6. ebay
7. news
8. google
9. yahoo
10. bebo

What was hot this year (fastest rising search queries in 2009)
1. facebook login
2. jogos
3. ebay uk
4. yahoo mail
5. hotmail
6. bbc iplayer
7. hi5
8. stephen gately
9. bing
10. spotify

The biggest stories (fastest rising news searches in 2009)
1. swine flu
2. susan boyle
3. jade goody
4. robert pattison
5. rihanna
6. michael jackson
7. google maps
8. twitter
9. stephen gately
10. iran

Bargain hunting (top cheap searches in 2009)
1. flights
2. holiday
3. train tickets
4. car insurance
5. hotels
6. laptops
7. travel insurance
8. car hire
9. tyres
10. tickets

How is Britain feeling? (top searches for “i feel…” in 2009)
1. i feel love
2. i feel alone
3. i feel fine
4. i feel good
5. i feel sick
6. i feel fat
7. i feel ill
8. i feel pretty
9. i feel ugly
10. i feel free

The hottest tickets (fastest rising ticket searches in 2009)
1. lady gaga
2. michael jackson
3. taylor swift
4. whitney houston
5. pixies
6. jls
7. beyonce
8. green day
9. tinchy stryder
10. u2

Related: The Top Ten Bing searches for 2009

Anna Leach


  • Hi, I was wondering how you got this data? Do you have to contact Google? I wanted to find the top Irish searches for research purposes. Could you tell me how to do that?
    Leonie Howlin

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