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Earth Day Piques Interest in Environment-Related Searches

  |  April 21, 2006   |  Comments

Earth-conscious day generates interest in the Web's environmental information.

The environment is an evergreen topic, but as Earth Day approaches, AOL Search and Hitwise report on the Web's search for green.

The top searched-for terms on the portal include: recycling, global warming, endangered species and solar power. Hybrid cars came in as the fifth-highest searched for environmental term. While Earth Day may trigger a handful of these searches, overall, drivers are likely more eco-conscious due to the increase in gas prices.

Top Environmental-Related Topics on AOL Search April 1 - 15
RankSearch Topic
1 Recycling
2 Global Warming
3 Endangered Species
4 Solar Power
5 Hybrid Autos
6 Pollution
7 Composting
8 Radon
9 Wetlands
10 Coral Reefs
11 Air Pollution
12 Pesticides
13 Acid Rain
14 Drinking Water
15 Wind Power
16 Water Pollution
17 Asbestos
18 Oil Spills
19 Watershed
20 Lead Poisoning
Source: AOL, 2006

Hitwise captured clickstream data across the Web to report on searches for Earth Day and other environment-related queries. Internet users who typed "Earth Day" into the search bar most often visited earthday.net, which earned a 19.01 percent market share. Earthsite.org, and earthday.wilderness.org followed second and third.

Top Web Sites That Received Traffic From the Term "Earth Day," March 15-April 15, 2006
Web SiteMarket Share (%)
www.earthday.net 19.01
www.earthsite.org 10.98
earthday.wilderness.org 8.41
www.worldwildlife.org 8.36
www.kaboose.com 8.31
earthday.envirolink.org 5.89
www.epa.gov 5.3
www.earthday.gov 4.86
www.getgreen.com 2.19
www.nature.org 1.8
www.oriental.com 1.75
Source: Hitwise, 2006

The EPA ranked seventh with a 5.3 percent market share in terms of searches for Earth Day, but a handful of other eco-minded queries routed visitors to EPA.gov. 'Global Warming,' 'EPA' and 'acid rain' garnered the most traffic to the site. A handful of searchers visited the EPA site for information on household issues such as 'old,' 'radon' and 'asbestos.'

Top Search Terms Delivered to EPA.gov
RankSearch TermVolume (%)
1 global warming 3.99
2 epa 3.76
3 acid rain 1.18
4 mold 1.10
5 recycling 0.94
6 environmental protection agency 0.75
7 radon 0.74
8 greenhouse effect 0.57
9 recycle 0.46
10 asbestos 0.40
Source: Hitwise, 2006

The search term 'recycle' ranked ninth in terms of traffic to the EPA site, however Web users often search for recycling information to learn about how to dispose of recyclables. "Recycling" is the top recycling-related term, with 8.5 percent of searches. 'Recycling paper,' 'computer recycling' and 'paper recycling' are all common Internet search terms.

AOL reports on top-level activity on its site and search engine. Hitwise captures anonymous clickstream data at the ISP level.

Most Popular Search Term Suggestions For "recycling"
RankSearch TermVolume (%)
1 recycling 8.51
2 recycling paper 0.64
3 computer recycling 0.48
4 paper recycling 0.37
5 recycling center 0.37
6 tire recycling 0.33
7 importance of recycling 0.32
8 recycling quotes 0.32
9 recycling lesson plans 0.27
10 recycling facts 0.27
Source: Hitwise, 2006

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Enid Burns

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