Tag: Google Insights for Search

Check out Google Insights for trends in health and policy

Web users already know that Google searchers are a treasure trove for advertisers. A search for “stop smoking” leads to region-specific ads next to the search results, such as those for the “Vapor Stick As Seen On TV,” or the “Quit For Life Program.”

For public health researchers, Google searches are also a jackpot of data thanks to a program called Google Insights for Search. At a November talk at the UNC – Chapel Hill Psychology Colloquium, Dr. Kurt Ribisl of the UNC Gillings School of Global Public Health explained how he and other researchers are using search trends to test the impact of public policy and even celebrity health diagnoses – all for free.


Public policy changes can lead to changes in consumer web searching behavior. What does this mean for the way we communicate about public health problems?

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