Google searches for NFTs spike to record highs

Google’s keyword search data shows interest in nonfungible tokens (NFTs) has surged to record levels, with traffic beating out search terms pertinent to many crypto assets ranked among the top ten.

According to Google Trends, interest in NFTs saw a dramatic spike at the start of the year as Dapper Labs’ NBA Top Shot and vintage Ethereum-based NFTs saw frenzied speculation.

While the bubble initially appeared short-lived — with search volume drying up by roughly 75% as of the end of June, interest began to bounce back in July before breaking into new highs at the end of October.

Search volume for “NFT” (blue) and “non-fungible token” (red) over 24 months: Google Trends

Since then, Google search traffic for NFT-related keywords has continued to surge, doubling over the past three months.

The spike in interest has seen “NFT” overtake many of keywords that have long-dominated crypto-related search traffic, including “DeFi,” “Ethereum,” and even “blockchain.”

Search volume for NFT (blue), Ethereum (red), blockchain (yellow), Dogecoin (green), and DeFi (purple) over 24 months: Google Trends

While Dogecoin firmly captured the public’s imagination during the second quarter — with search volume for “Dogecoin” rising to rival “Bitcoin” in early May, dog-token fever quickly subsided in the third quarter. As such, the Google Trends data suggests the momentum behind the canine-coin rally was immediately channelled into hype for NFTs.

NFT-mania sweeps Asia

According to Google Trends, NFT search traffic is currently dominated by Asian nations, with China, Uganda, Singapore, Hong Kong and the Philippines topping the keyword’s search rankings.

China’s search volume for ‘NFT’ peaked between Sep 5 to 11 this year. The month before the spike, Chinese tech conglomerate Tencent launched its NFT trading platform Huanhe and Alibaba launched a marketplace allowing users to trade licenses to create NFTs from copyrighted content.

However, the Chinese Communist Party released a series of statements denouncing NFTs via official state media publication The People’s Daily on Sept. 10, likely spurring the retracement in search volume since.

Top countries by search volume for “NFT”: Google Trends