Does Everyone Search Valentine Info On Day? Or Do They Use Other Terms?

Over the past week I have been looking at the various search suggestions being made as I type in Valentine - seems we may not use the holiday name itself when doing shopping or looking for places to take that special someone.

Christmas and Thanksgiving are two that do get heavily searched by name - so I thought V Day would as well. So any online marketers trying to find the right keywords to optimize for to take advantage of this romantic holiday should forget about the actual term and concentrate on the items themselves.

Sandra Heikkinen, of Google's Global Communications & Public Affairs department, sent some information that may help marketers next year.

General insights:

  • Searches for 'gifts for girlfriend' are about 30% higher than searches for 'gifts for wife' in the month of February
  • Searches for 'gifts for boyfriend' are more than 55% higher than searches for 'gifts for husband' in the month of February
  • Searches for 'gifts for boyfriend' are currently outpacing searches for 'gifts for girlfriend' by 81%
  • Searches for 'gifts for husband' are taking place twice as often as searches for 'gifts for wife'
  • This year, after roses, searches for 'lilies' are most popular followed by 'tulips' and 'carnations'
  • Searches for 'date ideas' peak each February, around Valentine's Day

Comparing this February to last:

  • Searches for 'unique valentines day' are up about 20% year over year
  • Searches for 'homemade valentines gift' are up almost 10% year over year
  • Searches for 'romantic restaurants' are up almost 5% year over year
  • Searches for 'free valentines day' are down 5% year over year
  • Searches for 'sapphire rings' are up 15% year over year (still thinking Royal Wedding...)
  • Searches for 'diamonds' are up 5% year over year

Chocolate and other sweet treats

  • While searches for 'chocolate' (which most people assume to be milk chocolate sans qualifier) beat out searches for specific types of chocolate, there are people looking for more specifics. Search volume for 'white chocolate' beats out both dark and milk chocolate by 32% and 30%, respectively. Searches for 'milk chocolate' outpace those for 'dark chocolate' by 2% in the month around Valentine's Day.
  • Searches for 'dove chocolate' have risen by 100% since January 1

In the past 7 days:

  • Searches for 'chocolate strawberries' are up by 120%
  • Searches for 'chocolate covered strawberries' are up by 90%
  • Searches for 'chocolate ganache' are up by 60%
  • Searches for 'chocolate fondue' are up by 50%
  • Searches for 'chocolate truffles' are up by 50%
  • Searches for 'chocolate hearts' are up by 65%
  • Searches for 'heart shaped cookies' are up by 64%
  • Searches for 'valentines day dessert' are up by 35%
  • Searches for 'cookie bouquets' are up by 66%

In the past 30 days:

  • Searches for 'valentines chocolate' are up by 1,450%
  • Searches for 'valentines day chocolate' are up by 1,400%
  • Searches for 'chocolate delivery' are up by 100%
  • Searches for 'chocolate covered oreos' are up by 41%
  • Searches for 'heart shaped chocolate' are up by 76%
  • Searches for 'chocolate flowers' are up by 21%, year over year
  • Searches for 'valentines chocolate' are up by more than 5%, year over year

Clothes and make-up

  • Searches for 'red lipstick' have risen by 24% in the past 7 days
  • Searches for 'red dresses' peak each February, around Valentine's Day

Thanks for the insights.

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Search Suggests from just the days before - sorry Bing would not allow me to do a screen shot but their associated info is interesting - you can see that the two Google ones show an increase in romance as the day approaches, while Yahoo may reflect that women are more in to Valentine's Day by their top search suggest - support what Sandra just told us..

The information should give some insight to marketers and improve what they do to market this major holiday next year. And if you are scrambling at the office to come up with some - it would appear you are not alone.

About the author

Frank Watson has been involved with the Web since it started. For the past five years, he headed SEM for FXCM -- at one time one of the top 25 spenders with AdWords. He has worked with most of the major analytics companies and pioneered the ability to tie online marketing with offline conversion.

He has now started his own marketing agency, Kangamurra Media. This new venture will keep him busy when he is not editing the Search Engine Watch forums, blogging at a number of authoritative sites, and developing some interesting online community sites.

He was one of the first 100 AdWords Professionals, a Yahoo and Overture Ambassador, and a member or mod of many of the industry forums. He is also on the Click Quality Council and has worked hard to diminish click fraud.