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What Happened On Google Search In 2018? ⋆ Crypto New Media


For many in the crypto and blockchain space, 2018 ends with some laudable achievements; research into blockchain and cryptocurrencies, and their impact on banking, e-commerce, global remittance, and other sectors increased. Many financial institutions joined the blockchain titanic, developing and researching into distributed ledger systems, and collaborating with blockchain startups to build the next financial infrastructure for the world.

For the cryptocurrency traders, 2018 looked like a year that will never end. The charts were mostly red, hodlers had it rough, the Lambos weren’t in, and consequently, the crypto Christmas tree was dry. But on the world’s largest search engine, something was going on. People were interested in blockchain, bitcoin, and cryptocurrencies, and searches for these terms rose. Here’s how the industry has performed in 2018 according to data from Google.


Interest in blockchain has been very low compared to cryptocurrencies, and over the years, ‘blockchain’ as a term has thus received low search volume on Google. Something changed around July 2018, when the term ‘blockchain’ surpassed the term ‘cryptocurrency’ for the first time in search frequency on Google. Though the increase in search is not skyrocketing, the search momentum for blockchain has been strong since July.

Data from Google’s Year In Search 2018 reveals that searches for the term ‘blockchain’ were especially strong in Malta, China, Singapore, Ghana, Hong Kong, Switzerland, Nigeria, United Arab Emirates, Slovenia, and many other regions. Blockchain as a term was also higher than other emerging technologies like Machine Learning, Robotics, the Internet of Things, and Big Data in search volume throughout 2018. Artificial Intelligence, however, beat blockchain in search frequency the whole year.

One possible explanation to the high search frequency for the term blockchain is that the distributed ledger technology has become an important technology that companies and governments all over the world are looking into for the next technology infrastructure. Companies like IBM, Microsoft, Facebook, and many other tech conglomerates are researching into and building distributed ledger systems.

Additionally, the increasing interest in blockchain depicts that, truly, many cryptocurrency enthusiasts are not in the game just for the prices of cryptos, but they are in it for the tech, as a popular crypto meme depicts.


For cryptocurrency as a search term on Google, the year 2018 hasn’t been that good. Since the end of 2017, which was regarded as the year of cryptocurrencies, interest in ‘cryptocurrency’ as a search term has been declining. Google Search ranks search popularity from 0 to 100, and cryptocurrency as a search term, has been falling from 100 in December 2017 to below 10 in December 2018. Some of the regions that received more interest in cryptocurrency searches in 2018 were Singapore, Slovenia, Australia, Cyprus, South Africa, Ghana, United Arab Emirates, St. Helena, Ireland, and Nigeria among others.


Bitcoin leads as the most searched ‘crypto’ term for some years now. Google trends data shows that the term ‘Bitcoin’ is about 10 times more popular than the terms ‘blockchain’ and ‘cryptocurrency’. Searches for the term Bitcoin reached a 6 months high in November 2018, even when bitcoin took a 30% fall. Other terms, such as ‘Is Bitcoin dead?’ and ‘HODL’ also surged upwards. Data from SEMrush also shows that apart from the term ‘Bitcoin’, other terms such as ‘bitcoin price’, ‘bitcoin value’, and ‘bitcoin to usd’ got a lot of attention on Google trends.


In a blog post, Investopedia revealed that there has been a sudden increase in readership for bitcoin-related content on its platform, adding that some of their most viewed landing pages have been those related to bitcoin. According to the post, some of their most viewed pieces over the course of 2018 have been related to bitcoin, what is bitcoin, bitcoin stock symbol (BTC), bitcoin mining, why is bitcoin volatile etc.

To culminate the high interest in Bitcoin, “What is Bitcoin?” topped the Google Year in Search 2018 charts in the “What is…?” category in both the US and the UK. The same “What is Bitcoin” was the number one search term in Romania. In the “How to…?” category in the US, “How to buy Ripple” was the fourth (4th) most searched phrase.

Increase in search volume doesn’t guarantee mainstream adoption or regulatory acceptance, but it shows that people are ready to learn about cryptocurrencies, bitcoin, and blockchain. This move, of course, will contribute to mainstream adoption.

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