Google Searches Are Weird (AKA: You Found Me HOW?)

March 25, 2020 Let's Discuss 17

So, the other day, I noticed that Celesta Rimington, author of the upcoming The Elephant’s Girl followed me on Instagram. Since I had recently announced my receipt of a review copy of her book, that didn’t seem excessively odd, but I hadn’t posted anything to Instagram about it (since it wasn’t a physical copy), and it made me wonder how she found me.

For some reason, I randomly Googled her book to see if my blog somehow came up from just this one mention. I don’t even know why, but I clicked on the Images tab and found something that sort of shocked me:

Relatively close to the top of the search results were two random images from my blog. One was the graphic for my February 2019 Wrap-up(???) and the other was a random Bite-Sized Reviews post. None of the reviews had anything to do with this book. Or elephants. I mean, there might have been a “girl” mentioned?

Scroll down just below these and there are even MORE images from my blog or Instagram:

In fact, I counted and random images from my blog showed up 15 times without hitting the More Search Items button. I thought maybe the search was somehow tailored to me, so I logged in on an Incognito browser with the same results.

No wonder Rimington followed me—she must’ve been wondering who this person was who showed up so many times when she searched for images of her book! Why are we connected? Does this mean I’m destined to love her book as much as I think I will based on the adorably compelling synopsis?

I’m not complaining, and there is no moral to this story except that I totally, completely do NOT understand Google search results.

I am clueless. The End.

Seeing this made me curious enough to check out what OTHER random things might be leading people to my blog.

A quick look at Google Analytics showed me that in the last 30 days lots of people have found my blog because they’re searching for (in order of number of searches):

Then there are some strange searches, like these:

  • “how to disappear for a little while” and “is it good to disappear for awhile”
    • I mean, it’s probably not all that emotionally healthy? I’m sort of nervous for the person who searched for that first one. PLUS, there were multiple other variations of this search that I found too! Maybe they’re referring to social distancing?
    • Though I guess I’m contradicting myself since I posted Sometimes You Just Need to Disappear for a Little While. I was referring to blogging, though, not like, life.
  • “3 addictions menu”
    • I pretty much only have the one addiction: books
  • “adam silvera judge”
    • Adam Silvera is a really nice guy—not at all judgmental
  • “agile guitar reviews”
    • Hmmm… I have no idea how this led you to my blog. I am not particularly agile and I don’t play guitar (maybe I mentioned that my daughter does?)
  • “another word for book lover”
    • Oooh! There are lots of those! Bookworm? Bookishly obsessed? Or how about tsundoku, which is the Japanese word for hoarding books. Maybe we could change that into a tsundokuer? Hmmm…
  • “best chinese in fresno”
    • Well, I can obviously see why this led you to my blog. Because … reasons.
  • “I don’t have a favorite food”
  • “how to say its my birthday”
    • Okay, repeat after me: It’s. My. Birthday.
    • You did great!!

And that is where I’ll leave you. More confused than ever.

Do you ever find weird searches that lead to your blog in mysterious ways? Or search for things and get unpredictable results? I want to know!

17 Responses to “Google Searches Are Weird (AKA: You Found Me HOW?)”

  1. shooting

    HAH How to say it’s my birthday. That’s the best one. I’m glad some searches led to helpful posts, but some of these are so random – it does make me giggle. I know a couple bloggers that will share these. I’ve never really looked into mine!

    -Lauren
    http://www.shootingstarsmag.net

  2. Aj @ Read All The Things!

    Haha, I love wayward Googlers. I put my blog’s search results in my monthly wrap-up posts. You should check what you named those images. Google’s bots aren’t great at “seeing” images, but they do know the file names of the images. You and the author might have images with similar names, so the bots think they’re about the same topic.

    • Nicole @ Feed Your Fiction Addiction

      Yes, I’ve seen this in your monthly wrap-up, but I’d never figured out how to look this up myself! I always love seeing this in your wrap-ups.

      My images are pretty simply named. The bite-sized reviews ones are basically just “Bite-sized reviews” and then the names of the books (none of which had anything to do with elephants or girls). But I didn’t think about similarities between my images and hers—maybe there’s something to that. I’ve just determined that I will probably always be clueless about the Google algorithm.

  3. Malka @ Paper Procrastinators

    I find it so interesting to see what people search to find our blog! We don’t have Google Analytics, so I had to rely on whatever WordPress took note of. It mostly listed search terms like “how to persuade friend to read this book” or “tips to convince to read the book” which definitely leads to 10 Ways to Convince Convince People to Read Your Favorite Books. What I’ve also tried doing is searching for our blog in general on incognito mode and seeing what pops up. Google images chooses some random posts and makes them show up when people search for Paper Procrastinators. Although it’s probably not random. I’m sure there’s some complex algorithm in place, but I can’t guess how it works just by seeing the results.

    I really enjoyed this post! It reminded me a lot of Fun With Spam, in the sense that you need to play a guessing game of what exactly people meant when they were searching on Google.

    Malka @ Paper Procrastinators recently posted: How Do You Discover New Books?
  4. Kristen @ Metaphors and Moonlight

    Yeah, but, what *does* omyw mean??? Lol. I don’t use Google Analytics, so I rarely get to see what people search to find my blog (just when it shows up in Jetpack). But it always makes me happy when I see someone has searched something that I do in fact have a post about because I feel like I helped!

    • Nicole @ Feed Your Fiction Addiction

      Hahahaha! I had to look it up. Apparently, it means “older man/younger woman” (or vice versa if it’s the other way). I added it to the acronyms post—learn something new every day!! And, yes, it definitely makes me happy when I see people finding my posts through specific searches, especially when it comes to older posts. That acronym post has been around for a really long time, but it’s still apparently useful! And the post about The Rain tells about how to view it in the original language with subtitles, so that’s pretty useful.

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