Amid the confusion and chaos that was 2020, all of us turned to Google at one point or another for responses to the questions we couldn’t answer on our own.
When the COVID-19 pandemic was declared and the world was sent into lockdowns, we searched for explanations around the best ways to look out for ourselves and each other, and answers to our common questions, including: Should you cancel the cleaners during the COVID-19 pandemic?
And now, as Australia begins to open up once more, with light at the end of the tunnel after a trying year, we find ourselves asking… When will we be able to travel again?
Looking at Google Australia’s Year In Search, which collates the top search engine questions and results from 2020, it’s easy to see how we’ve all struggled with unfamiliar questions.
“From fires to facemasks and sourdough, this year’s top trending searches show our wide spectrum of curiosities, worries and cravings,” Google says on its blog.
“We sought definitions, made sense of restrictions and looked to help people in need. We were stood down from jobs, stood up for Black Lives Matter and stood behind Quaden Bayles. We hunted for hand sanitiser, stocked up on toilet paper and donated bales of hay. And looking abroad, we followed the US election, the Beirut explosion and said goodbye to some greats.”
Most Googled terms in 2020
When it came to the news and current affairs, we hoped to stay in-the-know by frequently searching for additional updates around the ‘fires near me’, the coronavirus situation in Victoria, and ‘toilet paper’.
As we spent more time at home and indoors, our appetites, both relating to crisis foods and hobbies, spiked. In a bid to whittle away the time, we searched for recipes around sourdough bread, banana bread, Dalgona coffee and even hand sanitiser.
Unsurprising when you take a look at Afterpay’s share price in 2020, our credit cards also saw a huge workout in 2020. This year, we wanted to know: ‘Where to buy face masks‘, ‘Buy toilet paper online’, ‘Buy from the bush’ and ‘Buy Ps5‘ (we’ll never give up).
And now, as we start to emerge from the other side, just in time to welcome in a new year, we’re asking the questions: “How many people can I have in my house”, “How to buy shares” and “Can I leave Australia”.
It’s been a wild year — one we’d rather not re-live — despite how much we’ve learned about ourselves, our planet, its people, and our sourdough starters.