As the leading search engine in Russia, everyday Yandex provides results to over 250 million user queries. At the end of the year our research team compiles these queries and analyzes them to publish a list of the year’s top search trends. Usually we don’t publish this in English but since we heard the world was wondering what makes the average Russian laugh, cry, and pay attention, we thought we’d translate their research to English this year.
While these categories don’t cover everything, it gives us a great picture of what united Yandex users throughout 2017. Although it’s our job to provide information, we connect with it too. As our world has become increasingly intertwined through the power of technology, you may find that from your phone or laptop thousands of miles away from Russia, you too searched for similar topics in 2017 and can relate to this list.
The very top of the first category “Events” starts with one of the more difficult moments of the year that united us - a deadly terror attack in a Saint Petersburg metro station. Events such as these create concern but ultimately bring us together as a community. That week people came together such as offering their homes to those in need and at Yandex we were glad to be among those helping by providing free Yandex.Taxi rides.
When it comes to the categories of “Men” and “Women,” Yandex users searched for a number of local and international celebrities, taking interest in their lives, such as the beloved Eurovision star, Dima Bilan and opera singer, Maria Masksakova. As for the “Things and Phenomena” category, cryptocurrencies, fidget spinners, and the iPhone X proved to be just as popular in Russia as they were elsewhere.
In the same category, we were pretty humbled to see our intelligent assistant, Alice, make waves with Yandex users after its mid-October launch this year. Not only has Alice gained popularity for being useful but also for being sassy and entertaining. Thanks to all our users for appreciating our unpredictable robot and sharing your interactions.
It wasn’t a major surprise to see the Ice Hockey World Championship topping the “Sports” category in 2017. Fans searched for information on hockey, football, and the McGregor Mayweather fight among other sporting events.
For users who weren’t watching sports or were in between sporting events, they were looking up movie times to go see It and Despicable Me 3 among others. And when at home, of course, our users were watching Game of Thrones and other popular shows. Before the premier of season seven in July, we actually had the privilege of giving Jon Snow a Yandex.Taxi ride among our millions of other rides in 2017 (passengers don’t usually ride shotgun or carry swords but we made an exception).
Last but certainly not least, is our category on “Memes,” which these days some would argue includes some of the most valued content on the internet. Once again, our list of memes proves we can all appreciate a good laugh and there’s always that one viral trend we enjoy. This year Yandex users appreciated a solid list of memes, including “Zhdun” or “the one who waits” all over the place, including at our office in Moscow.
Thanks to our users’ queries and also to our new and improved deep neural network based search platform, we continue to provide users with the quality service they have known and loved for two decades. Thanks to our millions of users for turning to Yandex in 2017 to navigate their daily lives, we look forward to 2018!
For more comprehensive version of this research in Russian, please visit our research page.