It appears that in 2018, people were hoping to get rich quick, learn how to perform the Fortnite victory dances, and register then vote in an election.
As part of its annual “Year in Search” series, Google has released its list of 2018’s most trending search topics that begin with the phrase “How to…” It’s a fresh and fun look at all of the things people needed assistance with in 2018. Many are understandable, and some are intriguing.
Google selected the top 10 “How to…” searches that saw a significant spike in search traffic compared to the year prior, the company shared. It’s no surprise that a large number of searches were conducted about November’s midterm elections, a reflection of the sizable surge in voter turnout that ultimately swayed the national balance of power between Democrats and Republicans.
As a couple of lottery jackpots swelled to impressive amounts, Google was asked repeatedly how to play and how to win. Below are the top 10 most trending search topics per Google, as reported by Business Insider.
- “How to get boogie down emote”
Fortnite fans know what flossing means, as does a chunk of parents whose kids can’t get enough of this video game. In Fortnite: Battle Royale, players can unlock what’s called emotes, or special victory dances that their characters perform. Apparently, the boogie down emote was wildly popular among Fortnite fans this year.
- “How to screen record”
If you’ve just now mastered how to screenshot something, you might be wondering what it means to screen record. Apple doesn’t offer instructions on how to capture screen recordings on its products, so its users had to ask Google how to do this.
- “How to buy Bitcoin”
Last December, Bitcoin shot to $19,843 per piece. Naturally, everyone turned to Google to learn how they can get in on this cryptocurrency craze. Sadly, the momentum didn’t continue and Bitcoin’s value dropped steadily throughout this year.
- “How to play Powerball”
People who have never tried their luck at gambling bigtime asked Google how to play Powerball after someone won the $1.57 billion Mega Millions jackpot in October, followed by two Americans winning a Powerball jackpot just four days later worth $750 million. Everyone wanted a piece of that easy money.
- “How to get the old Snapchat back”
In February, Snapchat released a redesign that irked many users. It separated celebrity Snapchat stories from friends’ stories. Even famous people were angry with the update, including Kylie Jenner and Chrissy Teigen. Snapchat listened and tweaked its design in May.
- “How to turn off automatic updates”
When you’re in the middle of a meeting or studying for a big test and your phone dings repeatedly with pop-up notifications for new software, it can be annoying. It’s not a shock that numerous people begged Google to help them turn off those random and ill-timed notifications.
- “How to buy Ripple”
Bitcoin wasn’t the only household name for cryptocurrency this year. XRP or Ripple emerged on the scene this year and was worth more than $120 billion in January. Now it’s worth only 10 percent of its peak value today.
- “How to play Mega Millions”
When the Mega Millions jackpot reached a near-record $1.54 billion in October, people went wild trying to learn more about this lotto and how to win. One lucky duck from South Carolina ended up claiming the entire prize.
- “How to register to vote”
Disgruntled Americans turned to Google for help navigating the election process. The November 2018 midterm elections saw a jump in registered voters. More than 800,000 people registered to vote on September’s National Voter Registration Day.
- “How to vote”
On the heels of the second most popular Google search was “How to vote…” The 2018 U.S. midterm elections were at the top of everyone’s newsfeed and saw the highest level of voter turnout at a midterm election in more than 100 years.
President Donald Trump alleged this fall that Google’s search results are “rigged” when it comes to him and his administration. He told reporters that Google, Twitter, and Facebook are “treading on very, very troubled territory and have to be careful,” NBC News reported.
“Google search results for ‘Trump News’ shows only the viewing/reporting of Fake New Media, 96% of… results on ‘Trump News’ are from National Left-Wing Media, very dangerous. I think Google is really taking advantage of a lot of people. I think what Google and what others are doing, if you look at what is going on with Twitter and if you look at what’s going on in Facebook, they better be careful because you can’t do that to people,” he tweeted.