EU Referendum : Google Reveals the Nation’s Real Concerns

It’s the subject you can’t avoid, whether you’re scrolling through your newsfeed, watching TV, reading the paper, or eavesdropping on general chit-chat in the office. The EU referendum and its outcome has completely consumed the country over the last week, and for good reason. The knock-on effect it will have, not only for our country but on a global scale, is huge and will be felt for years to come.

With that said, our favourite search engine (Google, obviously!) has had its part to play in revealing the nation’s true understanding of what is happening. Hours after it became clear Britain was headed for Brexit, Google was inundated with “What happens if we leave the EU?” and “What is the EU?” – arguably quite concerning, given that over half the voting population had already decided to not be a part of it.

Google reported that searches for the phrases had surged by 250 percent just hours after the referendum results were made clear. Following this, news articles have flooded the internet from the likes of The Independent regarding concerns on why the population hadn’t asked these questions sooner.


(Google trends, what is the EU, last 30 days search results)

Other top searches the following day after the referendum included ‘Pound to Euro’ ‘FTSE 100’ and ‘exchange rates’, demonstrating the nation’s curiosity over what effect the 52% leave outcome was having on the UK’s economy.

Another telling search term found ‘Irish Passport’ surge in the hours following the results, following concerns from UK passport holders with Irish heritage wanting to maintain their prior EU status, previously held with their UK passport.

Arguably, having the ability to see the population’s seemingly anonymous questions following such events changes the landscape of subsequent reporting, and reflection. Now more than ever we are able to analyse tangible data regarding a significant number of the population’s thoughts at any given time. Just another reason Google is one of the most powerful tools that exists in the modern world.

Written byTony Conte

Founder and Owner of Brave Agency, an Integrated Agency transforming businesses through design, digital and marketing, helping you, our clients to get results by applying the right strategy.

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