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Economic Woes Top Online Search Terms

Web tracking firm comScore, Inc. released an analysis of changes in Americans’ searching behavior resulting from the economic downturn, based on December 2008 data.

Searches for several terms related to the economic downturn showed dramatic gains during the past year. Among the most notable increases were searches relating to the deteriorating job market, including searches using the term “unemployment” (8.2 million searches) and “unemployment benefits” (748,000 searches).

Meanwhile, terms relating to housing, including “mortgage” (up 72 percent to 7.8 million searches), “bankruptcy” (up 156 percent to 2.6 million searches), and “foreclosure” (up 67 percent to 1.4 million searches) also grew strongly. And Americans, resilient as they are, are seeking ways to save money, as evidenced by the increase in the number of searches for “coupons” (up 161 percent to 19.9 million) and “discount” (up 26 percent to 7.9 million).


Search Term Total Searches (000)

Dec-2007 Dec-2008 % Change

“Coupons” 7,637 19,921 161%

“Unemployment” 2,688 8,214 206%

“Discount” 6,271 7,928 26%

“Mortgage” 4,518 7,756 72%

“Bankruptcy” 1,012 2,589 156%

“Foreclosure” 824 1,373 67%

“Unemployment Benefits” 215 748 247%

Source: comScore Marketer

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