What words, phrases were Googled the most in 2021?

Google releases latest ‘Year in Search’ report

FILE - In this Tuesday, Aug. 28, 2018, file photo, a cursor moves over Google's search engine page, in Portland, Ore. (AP Photo/Don Ryan, File) (Don Ryan, Copyright 2020 The Associated Press. All rights reserved.)

At the end of each year, Google releases a list of the most popular search terms by country for that year.

Last year, the Google search trends in the U.S. largely reflected the pandemic and the 2020 presidential election, as you can imagine. In 2021 -- a year that feels like it lasted for five years (and, simultaneously, five minutes?) -- the search trends were a bit more diverse.

In the U.S., the top five searched topics were:

  • NBA
  • DMX
  • Gabby Petito
  • Kyle Rittenhouse
  • Brian Laundrie

Google’s 2021 report includes the most popular searches in categories like news, people, actors, games, movies, music and more.

The report also examines some “how to” search categories -- let’s break some down.

In the U.S., the top five “how to be” searches were:

  • How to be eligible for stimulus check
  • How to be more attractive
  • How to be happy alone
  • How to be a baddie
  • How to be a good boyfriend

The top five “how to pronounce” searches were:

  • How to pronounce Dogecoin
  • How to pronounce Michael Jackson
  • How to pronounce quinoa
  • How to pronounce Kamala
  • How to pronounce Elon Musk son’s name

The top five “or” searchers were:

  • Effect or affect
  • Barbie, Bratz or Fairy
  • Allergies or COVID
  • Bones or no bones
  • Bougie or boujee

The top search categories included in each report vary by country. You can check out Google’s Year in Search 2021 report right here.

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About the Author:

Cassidy Johncox is a senior digital news editor covering stories across the spectrum, with a special focus on politics and community issues.