People willing to learn physics might search for something like "physics books", "physics courses", "high school physics", "guide to learning physics", and similar queries. But what I find interesting is that even the combined search volume of all of these queries much lower than that of "physics" alone.

For instance, look at this data: https://trends.google.com/trends/explore?q=physics,physics%20books,learn%20physics,physics%20for%20beginners,physics%20basics

I tried it out with almost a hundred queries (derived from Google's "searches related to [your query]" section at the bottom of the page), and still, the combined search volume would only add up to less than 20 units on Google Trends relative to 72 units for "chemistry".

I guess if there are about 500 frequently used queries (say the ones searched for more than once a week), applying the Pareto principle, the combined search volume would be no more than 30 relative units against "physics".

What do you think?

1 Answer 1


Don't underestimate the weight of long-tail queries. While it may be true that the top 100 queries don't shake a candle at the "main" query, I bet if one could look at ALL queries, the numbers would start to add up more favorably.

For almost everything you can think of, there are 100 people who all typed in 100 "different" queries all with the same intent. So, while you might type in "guide to learning physics", other people with the same intent have typed in "guide for learning physics", "physics guide", "physics book", "books on physics", "physics resources", "resources for physics", "learn physics", "how to learn physics", "how to do physics", "how to practice physics", "how to get better at physics", you get the idea.

So, it's not going to be just 100 queries, or 500 queries that add up to the traffic that just "physics" gets, but there could be thousands or tens of thousands of different ways to word nearly the same intent.

In other words, I would not discount the queries used "less than once per week". Since there are so many of them representing the same intent, they could easily add up much more quickly than anyone would expect.

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