Google: Healthcare and Haiti dominated 2010 tax search results

Posted by Aharon Etengoff

An analytics report compiled by Google indicates that topics such as healthcare and the devastating earthquake in Haiti dominated tax-related searches in 2010.

"In general, tax season search trends look pretty similar each year, but if we dive deeper, there are lots of mini-trends to explore, often triggered by unforeseen and/or unique world events. For example, we saw a flurry of search interest following the passage of the healthcare reform bill in March," explained Jon Kaplan, Google's director of Financial Services.

Google: Healthcare and Haiti dominated 2010 tax search results"The sharp increase in searches for terms like [taxes healthcare] and [healthcare tax increase] likely reflected curiosity about the implications of the new law on tax filings. 



"We saw a similar trend following the tragic earthquake in Haiti. The outpouring of support for victims in Haiti generated increased interest in the details of charitable donations as they related to taxes; searches queries like [haiti donation tax] were noticeably high in January."

Kaplan also noted that "implications" of heightened unemployment levels were also "top of mind" in 2010, with a noticeable "interest" in the effects of joblessness and tax filing.

"Queries like [unemployed taxes] and [unemployment tax refund] were noticeably elevated compared to 2009 search volume, in particular around the season's first spike," added Kaplan.