Top YouTube Searches (as of 2018)

Top YouTube Searches (as of 2018)

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Have you ever wondered what people search for most on YouTube?

Today, I’m excited to share with you some brand new data:

  • Top100 YouTube searches (US)—a list of the most popular YouTube searches in the US.
  • Top100 YouTube searches (Worldwide)—the same data but filtered to show searches outside of the United States too. And with global search volumes.

But first things first—some news:

Not only will we soon add Bing keyword data to Keywords Explorer (as announced on our list of the top Bing searches), but also YouTube and Amazon search volumes and metrics.

Here’s a preview of how it will look for YouTube:

So basically, you’ll soon be able to use Keywords Explorer to see keyword metrics for all the major search engines—Google, Bing, Amazon, and YouTube.

Now, without further ado, let’s find out just how popular cat videos really are!

Top 100 YouTube search queries in the US

It’s clear right away that searches for songs and musicians dominate this list.

# Keyword Search Volume
1 jake paul 7,900,000
2 asmr 7,500,000
3 markiplier 7,480,000
4 logan paul 7,040,000
5 pewdiepie 5,580,000
6 despacito 5,480,000
7 jacksepticeye 5,420,000
8 music 5,060,000
9 dantdm 4,540,000
10 bts 4,500,000
11 ricegum 3,680,000
12 game grumps 3,490,000
13 fortnite 3,040,000
14 wwe 3,030,000
15 eminem 2,920,000
16 popularmmos 2,870,000
17 buzzfeed 2,860,000
18 snl 2,830,000
19 minecraft 2,760,000
20 john oliver 2,660,000
21 stephen colbert 2,590,000
22 taylor swift 2,530,000
23 cnn live 2,490,000
24 drake 2,460,000
25 try not to laugh 2,430,000
26 ssundee 2,420,000
27 vanossgaming 2,410,000
28 rick and morty 2,390,000
29 shane 2,330,000
30 h3h3 2,290,000
31 joe rogan 2,250,000
32 fox news live 2,230,000
33 shane dawson 2,100,000
34 xxxtentacion 2,080,000
35 david dobrik 2,070,000
36 cardi b 2,070,000
37 post malone 2,050,000
38 last week tonight 2,040,000
39 cnn 2,010,000
40 alex jones 1,990,000
41 kendrick lamar 1,960,000
42 trump 1,950,000
43 ed sheeran 1,910,000
44 bruno mars 1,870,000
45 nightcore 1,870,000
46 tyt 1,820,000
47 dragon ball super 1,790,000
48 msnbc 1,760,000
49 slime 1,750,000
50 fox news 1,710,000
51 roblox 1,710,000
52 game theory 1,710,000
53 idubbbz 1,680,000
54 dude perfect 1,660,000
55 ninja 1,650,000
56 ariana grande 1,630,000
57 rachel maddow 1,620,000
58 fgteev 1,620,000
59 guava juice 1,610,000
60 songs 1,610,000
61 2018 fifa world cup 1,600,000
62 nicki minaj 1,600,000
63 liza koshy 1,590,000
64 seth meyers 1,590,000
65 justin bieber 1,580,000
66 documentary 1,570,000
67 fox news live stream 1,570,000
68 linkin park 1,540,000
69 lil pump 1,540,000
70 overwatch 1,540,000
71 logic 1,520,000
72 aphmau 1,480,000
73 romanatwood 1,480,000
74 youtube 1,470,000
75 peppa pig 1,460,000
76 lil uzi vert 1,460,000
77 ben shapiro 1,460,000
78 live 1,450,000
79 chris brown 1,440,000
80 havana 1,430,000
81 philip defranco 1,430,000
82 study music 1,410,000
83 amv 1,410,000
84 migos 1,400,000
85 movies 1,400,000
86 colbert 1,390,000
87 michael jackson 1,390,000
88 trevor noah 1,390,000
89 jimmy fallon 1,380,000
90 telugu movies 1,380,000
91 bill maher 1,380,000
92 gorillaz 1,370,000
93 dunkey 1,370,000
94 jimmy kimmel 1,370,000
95 ksi 1,360,000
96 react 1,350,000
97 jontron 1,330,000
98 ice poseidon 1,330,000
99 vines 1,320,000
100 funny videos 1,320,000

In fact, almost ⅓ of the top 100 searches are music related.

If you’ve ever been in any doubt as to just how popular Justin Bieber is, doubt no more. There are a staggering 5.48M monthly searches for Despacito (a song that—while not originally a Bieber song—saw a huge boost in popularity after the release of Justin’s remix) and a further ~1.57M monthly searches for Justin Bieber.

So it probably comes as no surprise that the official video for Despacito (note: this is not actually the Justin Bieber version) is the most viewed video of all‐time on YouTube with 5.74 BILLION views.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kJQP7kiw5Fk

To put that in perspective, Gangnam Style—the first video to reach a billion views on YouTube—currently has just 3.24B views.

But it’s not all about music…

You’ll notice that 6 of the top 10 searches are “branded” searches—i.e., folks searching for channel names or YouTube personalities. This is a trend that continues beyond the top 10, with 40% of the top 100 searches being for specific YouTube personalities and channels.

Here are the top 10 most popular YouTube channels and “celebrities” according to our data:

# Keyword Search Volume
1 jake paul 7,900,000
2 markiplier 7,480,000
3 logan paul 7,040,000
4 pewdiepie 5,580,000
5 jacksepticeye 5,420,000
6 dantdm 4,540,000
7 ricegum 3,680,000
8 game grumps 3,490,000
9 popularmmos 2,870,000
10 buzzfeed 2,860,000

These searches get a combined 50.86 MILLION searches per month in the US.

Interestingly, quite a few of these folks are gaming vloggers (or gaming vloggers turned YouTube personalities, like PewDiePie), which brings us neatly onto what appears to be the next most popular genre of videos on YouTube: gaming videos.

Here are all the searches that somehow relate to gaming (and their respective search volumes):

# Keyword Search Volume
1 markiplier 7,480,000
2 pewdiepie 5,580,000
3 jacksepticeye 5,420,000
4 dantdm 4,540,000
5 game grumps 3,490,000
6 fortnite 3,040,000
7 popularmmos 2,870,000
8 minecraft 2,760,000
9 ssundee 2,420,000
10 vanossgaming 2,410,000
11 game theory 1,710,000
12 ninja 1,650,000
13 fgteev 1,620,000
14 overwatch 1,540,000
15 dunkey 1,370,000

Having looked through some of those channels myself, live gaming videos—aka, “let’s plays”—seem very popular. Not familiar with such videos? Here’s one of the most popular let’s plays from one of the most popular YouTubers on our list—jacksepticeye:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rJmsCDWKCnc

Speaking of live videos, it looks like millions of people are watching live TV on YouTube. “CNN Live,” “Fox News Live,” and simply “live” each have millions of searches per month.

Live videos are so popular, in fact, that YouTube now has a dedicated channel for live streams.

youtube live

youtube live

It’s not just live TV that people like watching on YouTube either: John Oliver, Stephen Colbert, Jimmy Kimmel, Jimmy Fallon, and many other US TV personalities also get millions of searches per month.

So, to summarise, people flock to YouTube in search of entertainment.

Hardly surprising, right? But what is surprising is this:

None of the top 100 YouTube searches in the US have anything to do with cats. That’s a shame because I love cats. 😉

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sP4NMoJcFd4

Now let’s see how these US stats compare to the Worldwide stats.

Top 100 YouTube search queries in the World

It looks like it’s not just the US that has an unhealthy obsession with the song Despacito, with monthly searches topping 79M worldwide!

# Keyword Search Volume
1 despacito 79,250,000
2 bts 31,940,000
3 bad bunny 27,280,000
4 shape of you 25,120,000
5 ed sheeran 24,860,000
6 pewdiepie 23,350,000
7 asmr 22,820,000
8 ozuna 22,770,000
9 justin bieber 21,320,000
10 eminem 20,680,000
11 logan paul 19,000,000
12 wwe 18,550,000
13 minecraft 18,000,000
14 music 17,730,000
15 jake paul 17,700,000
16 bruno mars 16,940,000
17 maluma 16,840,000
18 peliculas completas en español 16,540,000
19 ariana grande 15,620,000
20 shakira 14,930,000
21 peppa pig 14,780,000
22 xxx 14,690,000
23 linkin park 14,140,000
24 havana 14,120,000
25 taylor swift 13,900,000
26 dragon ball super 13,840,000
27 youtube 13,280,000
28 twice 12,800,000
29 rihanna 12,730,000
30 coldplay 12,490,000
31 katy perry 12,260,000
32 alan walker 12,190,000
33 markiplier 12,110,000
34 fernanfloo 12,100,000
35 sia 11,920,000
36 michael jackson 11,890,000
37 2018 fifa world cup 11,770,000
38 selena gomez 11,620,000
39 fortnite 11,390,000
40 drake 11,380,000
41 mi gente 10,940,000
42 blackpink 10,630,000
43 nicki minaj 10,570,000
44 dua lipa 10,510,000
45 jacksepticeye 10,320,000
46 la rosa de guadalupe 10,230,000
47 enes batur 9,960,000
48 musica 9,760,000
49 imagine dragons 9,670,000
50 songs 9,590,000
51 dantdm 9,360,000
52 karaoke 9,110,000
53 despacito justin bieber 9,070,000
54 j balvin 9,040,000
55 maroon 5 9,000,000
56 vegetta777 8,760,000
57 funny videos 8,750,000
58 exo 8,740,000
59 baby shark 8,690,000
60 live 8,670,000
61 xxxtentacion 8,570,000
62 movies 8,440,000
63 telugu movies 8,250,000
64 chris brown 8,190,000
65 faded 8,180,000
66 adele 8,160,000
67 peliculas completas 8,040,000
68 juegagerman 8,020,000
69 shawn mendes 7,990,000
70 nightcore 7,810,000
71 lil pump 7,770,000
72 beyonce 7,710,000
73 romeo santos 7,700,000
74 me rehuso 7,700,000
75 barbie 7,620,000
76 filmes 7,600,000
77 enrique iglesias 7,560,000
78 martin garrix 7,540,000
79 post malone 7,540,000
80 gta 5 7,470,000
81 rockabye 7,470,000
82 the weeknd 7,400,000
83 felipe neto 7,390,000
84 dross 7,370,000
85 los polinesios 7,330,000
86 twenty one pilots 7,300,000
87 nicky jam 7,200,000
88 ncs 7,120,000
89 cnco 7,120,000
90 ricegum 7,110,000
91 perfect ed sheeran 7,090,000
92 squeezie 7,010,000
93 rap 6,990,000
94 skrillex 6,960,000
95 doraemon 6,890,000
96 mc kevinho 6,700,000
97 mr bean 6,640,000
98 felices los 4 6,640,000
99 cardi b 6,600,000
100 gorillaz 6,590,000

That’s over 30 searches per SECOND on average.

And this isn’t the only song racking up the YouTube views. Searches for artists, bands and songs dominate our list of the top 100 worldwide YouTube searches with a staggering 65/100 searches (almost ⅔) being music‐related.

So compared to the US, it seems that the rest of the World uses YouTube far more for music.

What else are they listening to? Ed Sheeran, Bruno Mars, Coldplay, and of course, South Korean boy band BTS.

Not heard of BTS? Get listening. 😉

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MBdVXkSdhwU

There are also far fewer “branded” searches (i.e., for YouTube personalities) Worldwide. Only one of the top 10 searches is branded, which is quite a contrast to the US where over half the top 10 searches are.

ASMR videos appear to be popular around the globe.

Not familiar with ASMR videos? You’re in for a treat#DontJudge

And how about this:

There are 13.2M monthly searches on YouTube for… um, Youtube. #GoFigure

Full YouTube Keywords Explorer is coming soon!

Some of you may know that we have a tool called Ahrefs’ Keywords Explorer.

With this, you can enter any seed keyword (e.g., “Xbox”) and see exactly how many times people are searching for it on Google each month.

xbox keywords explorer

xbox keywords explorer

You can also discover a ton of related keyword ideas using the various reports.

keywords explorer phrase match

keywords explorer phrase match

Unfortunately, we don’t know of any tool that does the same thing for YouTube, which is a big blow for video marketers.

So we decided to make one.

Here’s a sneak peek:

It will show estimated YouTube search volumes (in the US and other countries), clicks, and search trends over time. You can also generate YouTube keyword ideas using the various reports on the left‐hand menu.

We’re hoping to launch this tool in early 2019.

Stay tuned! 🙂

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