Russian Winter Search Behavior

Throughout the year, the seasons can really impact the way people turn to their local search engine to solve their everyday needs and problems.  From the change of temperature to the change of sports seasons, the types of queries search engines see from month to month can be pretty eclectic.

People living in Russia, a place famously known for harsh winters, fur coats, and hockey also enter a number of different search queries during the winter.  Analysts at Yandex, Russia’s leading search engine, recently put together data on search queries on organizations/locations to visit by month and season.  While some of the searches seem quite obvious for winter queries, other aspects of this Russian winter search behavior may surprise you.

Of course, earlier this winter searches for Christmas tree bazaars peaked as Russians were preparing for the Christmas and New Year holidays.  As seen below, some Russians are still searching for Christmas trees into January because the New Year Holiday is the main celebration and gift-giving day of the season. Russian Orthodox Christmas is also celebrated on January 7th and 8th, so last minute shoppers and decorators are still searching for holiday related places into January.

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Winter is also a peak period for Russians to be searching for sports bars.  Last year the Winter Olympics obviously impacted the rise in sports bar searches for Russians but still before the winter games even started, you can notice a rise in searches for a place to get a drink and watch a sporting event.  A number of televised sporting events from skiing to ice hockey draw Russian viewers into sports bars to warm up during the winter months.

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Naturally, there is an increased amount of searches for flower shops during the winter as well. The rise can be attributed to three major holidays during February and March: Valentine’s Day, Men’s Day, and Women’s Day.

Valentine’s Day has become increasingly celebrated and popular in Russia but February 23rd, Men’s Day, and March 8th, Women’s Day, are the traditional Russian holidays that have more people searching for flower shops during the winter. Yes, men appreciate carnations and other flowers on Men’s Day – by the way, it’s today!

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Russians love going to the banya, traditional Russian spa, during the winter. Russians sip tea and alcohol and eat snacks with friends between rounds of going into the sauna, using body scrubs, and rinsing off with cold water.   Winter trips to the banya are a must, as they are known to keep people in good health during the harsh and cold winter.

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Interestingly, Russian searches for outwear varies by location. While some Russians are bracing themselves for the winter ahead by purchasing their coats in the fall, others in places like Rostov-na-donu are buying their outerwear from January to April.

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Seasonality in search is expected but local customs and holidays explain a bit more about the Russian winter search behavior.  Staying up to speed on these seasonal trends is not only important for your Yandex.Direct time targeting but also for your geo-targeting.  Users in different cities are not necessarily searching the same way during different times of the year. The best PPC specialists should stay on top of these changes when they adjust their Yandex.Direct campaigns!