What People Searched For Most On Getty Images Last Year

GRABOVO, UKRAINE - JULY 17:   Debris from Malaysia Airlines Flight 17 is shown smouldering in a field  July 17, 2014 in Grabovo, Ukraine near the Russian border. Flight 17, on its way from Amsterdam to Kuala Lumpur and carrying 295 passengers and crew, is believed to have been shot down by a surface-to-air missile, according to U.S. intelligence officials and Ukrainian authorities quoted in published reports. The area is under control of pro-Russian militias.  (Photo by Pierre Crom/Getty Images)

Getty Images’ annual top searches reflect a mix of the year’s events, news, sports, popular celebrities and other major stories and trending ideas that connect the thinking of our visitors around the globe.

Anne Flanagan
Posted by Anne Flanagan

Our Search Data and Creative Research teams collaborate on identifying terms that capture the shifts and changes of our time to inform their work. Digging deep into the data they are able to pick up on the cultural mood.

In 2014 our list of top searched celebrities is led by Beyoncé, Kim Kardashian and Taylor Swift, all of them had already made it into the Top10 of most searched celebrities in past years, but managed to even grow their popularity. The three women had a great year. Beyoncé enjoyed the success of her album, live performances at the Grammys as well as the MTV Video Music Awards and a sold-out summer tour with Jay Z. Kim Kardashian got married, released her app and almost ‘broke the Internet’with her appearance on the cover of Paper Magazine, while Taylor Swift released her record-breaking new album, 1989.

Three celebrities that didn’t make the Top10 (yet), but who saw a spike in search interest with our visitors are George Clooney’s newly wedded wife Amal Alamuddin, Lupita Nyang’o and Anne Hathaway.

Rachel Murray/Getty Images

Rachel Murray/Getty Images

We all remember the pictures of the great matches in Brazil, 2014 was for sure a year for football! It’s not at all surprising that the FIFA World Cup turned out to be our top searched sport event and ‘football’ (soccer) the most searched sport on Getty Images.

Bastian Schweinsteiger/Getty Images

Sean Botterill/Getty Images

The two top searched news events in 2014 were ‘Malaysia Airlines Flight 370’and ‘Malaysia Airlines Flight 17’. It has been a bad year for Malaysia Airlines, first the mystery of the Boeing 777 that disappeared over the South Indian Ocean and only months later the jet that crashed in Ukraine, circumstances still remain unclear.

Other news events that dominated the searches of our customers in 2014 were the conflict in Ukraine, the Ebola outbreak in West Africa, the rise of ISIS and the unrest in Ferguson, Missouri.

John Moore/Getty Images

John Moore/Getty Images

On the Creative side a set of data that is always insightful to analyse is the conceptual terms that our customers use for their searches, as these words capture the thinking behind their content needs. In 2014 the three top conceptual searches evolved around the themes of ‘cooperation’, ‘success’and ‘connection’. Within the Top10 concepts visitors showed more interest in imagery visualising ‘inspiration’, ‘direction’and ‘change’this year than in 2013.

The popular topics that our customers searched for in 2014 were fairly predictable: ‘sport’, ‘science & technology’, ‘business’, ‘finance’and ‘healthy lifestyle’. But within the millions of searches the team always identifies early on fast rising keywords that highlight areas in which our customers are starting to show increasing interest. For the second year we saw a significant spike for the term ‘selfie’, echoing the increased significance of mobile photography and honest self-portraits.

Another phrase we are currently following is ’3D Printing’. As more companies put their weight behind the technology 3D printers are becoming more affordable as well as easier to use and industry experts expect 2015 to be the year when 3D printing reaches the mainstream.

While many of the search trends capture the global zeitgeist, the regional differences are always worth checking out. World Cup winner Germany celebrated ‘soccer’in their Top10 searched terms, while visitors in France expressed their love for food and customers in Japan showed the importance of technology in their search behaviour.

As 2014 comes to a close we can’t wait to find out what the New Year will bring and what will drive the searches of our visitors! To find out more about the key visual trends that the Creative team at Getty Images predicts for 2015 download our free Creative in Focus on iBooks.

Lead image: Pierre Crom/Getty Images