As with Mother's Day shopping trends, consumers are getting a head start on the quest for the perfect gift for dad. Taking a look at indexed search volume, we find that searches for "father's day gifts" began to increase in early February.

Though both moms and dads are getting some early search love this gift-giving season, it appears that fathers may win in the end - at their peak, searches for "gifts for dad" outpaced "gifts for mom" by a whopping 12% in 2009.

Will dads continue their reign this year? It's too soon to tell but in the interim expect searches to increase steadily as we head quickly towards Mother's Day and Father's Day 2010.

With the official start of Spring comes the homestretch to carefree summer days for many homework-ridden students. It appears that rather than focusing on their final quarter, many are turning to the web to shop for graduation party supplies, announcements, and dresses. In fact, searches in these key categories make up 9 of the top 10 graduation rising searches on

The other good news for soon-to-be graduates: they aren't the only one's searching for graduation items. Proud parents, relatives, and friends have also started the search for the perfect gift for the child that grew up too quickly. Using Google Insights for Search, we see that searches for "graduation gifts" began to uptick in early January and continue to rise, on par with 2009 search volume.

All this anticipation for summer has us lamenting our lack of a summer vacation! Alas, we'll settle for an invite to one of these parties.

Coming off of a successful Valentine's Day and the highest monthly sales gains since November 2007, retailers (and moms) across the nation may have more good news to look forward to.

Mother's Day, still more than a month and a half away, already has consumers seeking out the perfect gift for mom. Taking a look at US search volume for "mother's day gifts" we find that searches began to increase in late January as consumers shop earlier for key holidays.

And who do you think loves their mother's the most? Turns out that New Yorkers, Virginians, and Californians are already spreading the love, beginning their Mother's Day searches earlier than others.

Keep an eye on these insights as we quickly head towards Sunday, May 9, 2010. For those of you who are bunking the early shopping trend - that's also know as Mother's Day.

Leprechauns won't be the only mischievous ones this St. Patrick's Day. According to Google Insights For Search, searches for ‘st patricks day party’ are on the rise as 48% of individuals plan to attend a private party or celebrate at a local restaurant this year.

Along with the interest in St. Patrick’s Day parties comes a need to prepare appropriately - users are searching for hats, decorations, and of course, green beer. In fact, while St. Patty’s day is celebrated across the world, it seems that Ohio might have the most pride when it comes to the St. Patrick's green drink specialty.

Have a fun, safe St. Patrick’s Day!

With swimsuit season just around the corner, spring vacation planning and the anticipation of beach-worthy weather is driving people to search for the most flattering swimsuits. In fact, the central US is showing its wanderlust for warm weather by dominating the regional search volume rankings of swimwear terms in Google Insights for Search.

Search trends indicate that one piece swimsuits and tankinis will be a hit this year despite fashion show stand outs including cutouts, plunging necklines & one shoulder designs in various bright colors and graphical prints. [1] Be on the lookout for a swing in search queries towards designer looks as the swimsuit season heats up.

Sources: "Swimwear Trends for 2010," Paula Darnell (

Keri Overman

(Cross-posted with the Google Merchant Blog & Google Mobile Blog)

Vic Gundotra, VP of Engineering, demonstrated last December a preview version of Product Search for mobile with local inventory, which lets you see right in your search results whether items are in stock at nearby stores. We're happy to announce that as of today, if you're searching for a product that is sold by participating retailers, including Best Buy, Sears, Williams-Sonoma, Pottery Barn, or West Elm, you can just look for the blue dots in the search results to see if it's available in a local store. If you see a blue dot, you can tap on the adjacent "In stock nearby" link, and you'll be taken to the seller's page where you'll see whether the item is "In Stock" or has "Limited Availability" near you. You'll also see how far away the stores are from you -- as long as you've enabled My Location or manually specified your location.

If you have an iPhone, Palm WebOS phone, or any Android-powered device, and you're in the US, just go to in your mobile browser, tap on the "more" link, and then select "Shopping." Or look for the "Shopping results" section in Universal Search results when you search on

Finally, if you're a retailer and you'd like to participate in this program, we want to hear from you. Please fill out this brief form to let us know that you'd like to be considered. In the meantime, you can get prepared by making sure your Local Business Center data is up to date, and ensuring that your Product Search data is in great shape.

Each year, more than 8 million high school students attend prom. With the night costing anywhere from $150 to $3,000, the prom dress industry generates an impressive $1 billion in sales annually. [1]

As Google Insights for Search shows – it’s never too early for teens and their moms to start shopping for this very important rite of passage. As seen below, “prom dress 2010” is the second most searched term in the US shopping category. Additionally, searches are up 23% from last year, begin to uptick as far back as September, and are forecasted to peak in mid-March based on 2009 trends.

Analyzing rising searches in the prom dress category indicates that shorter dresses will be this year’s must have item and affordability is top of mind. Designers are accommodating teens with collections geared toward this trend and within various price ranges.

Dress stores and e-commerce sites around the country are stocking up on inventory and preparing for the rush of girls looking for their local dress store and affordable brands. Are your online campaigns ready? Be sure to broadcast discount messaging and availability of shorter dress variations this season.

Source: "Outlook Bright for Prom Dress Sales Despite Recession, Retailers Say," Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, January 14, 2010.

Last but not least, our final learning for the rest of 2010: the evolution of multi-channel behavior.

With searches for "buy online, pick up in store" up by as much as 100% this past December, multi-channel shopping has evolved as the new face of commerce, the norm rather than the exception. In fact, when asked, 34% of consumers researched online before buying offline and 21% researched online and offline, before purchasing online.

As we see, consumers leverage both the online and offline worlds in making their final purchase decisions so retailers must also integrate their strategies to reach the "nonline" consumer.

Source: Google/OTX Post-Holiday Consumer Study, January 2010. Q12 Thinking about your recent Holiday shopping experience, in which of the following ways did you approach your Holiday shopping? Select all that apply. n= 1850.