America and Canada’s top Google searches

As we bid farewell to 2023, it’s time to walk down memory lane of the past 12 months. What did we learn this year? Who popped up on our discovery radar? When did the hottest events happen? Where did our wandering feet take us this year? Why did certain occasions happen? How did we pick up that nifty new skill? 

A multitude of questions have waltzed through our minds this year, but let’s cut to the chase. What were the burning questions that united us all in the search for answers this year? As an end-of-year recap, we utilized Google Trends to unveil the most sought-after ‘who, what, when, where, why, how’ queries to spill all on America’s and Canada’s 2023 curiosities.

Key Findings:

  • Who: “Who is Erin Carter” shared breakout searches in both the US and Canada
  • What: “What is ChatGPT” ranked #1 in America (2,700% increase in search volumes), while “What kind of bird is Scuttle” skyrocketed by 3,350% in Canada
  • When: Americans were on the edge of their seats, frantically searching “when are taxes due” (up by 3,250%); Canadians were more focused on “when is Black Friday 2023” (surging by 4,400%)
  • Where: “No Hard Feelings where to watch” rose 1,800% in search (US); “Where to watch The Last of Us” spiked by 1,750% (Canada)
  • Why: Americans wanted to know “Why are actors striking” (1,600% surge), and Canadians were curious as to “why is Twitter called X” (up by 1,950%)
  • How: “How to change background color Instagram story” was asked amongst Americans (2,650% increase), while Canadians scored a breakout search in “how to change time on Fitbit” and “how to delete Snapchat AI”

America’s 2023 curiosities revealed

In the realm of the nation’s digital curiosity, Erin Carter and the Super Bowl LVII surfaced as 2023’s search champions – with both leading to viral breakout searches (when a search term exceeds 5,000% in popularity). “Who is Erin Carter” soared in fame as the Netflix thriller series broke records, hinting at its must-watch status. Meanwhile, “who won the Super Bowl 2023” skyrocketed across the nation, revealing the triumphant Kansas City Chiefs. 

In the quest for knowledge, “what is ChatGPT” ranks as America’s most searched for ‘what’ question. Despite its year-long existence, the AI chatbot catapulted into the spotlight, slipping into everybody’s daily lives. The impressive tool has undoubtedly made its mark on the American landscape. 

Hit the panic button! “When are taxes due” skyrocketed by 3,250% in Google searches over the last 12 months. It seems that millions of Americans collectively experienced the last-minute fight as the search query hit an all-time high from April 9th to the 15th (the tax deadline was April 15th). The anxiety-inducing question wasn’t a blip though, as it topped any other ‘when’ questions Americans had in 2023. 

“No Hard Feelings where to watch” seized the #1 spot in America’s ‘where’ Google searches. The Netflix film drew in 2.4 million household users and the data shows! Google Trends witnessed a 1,800% surge during its premiere week, etching its mark on the pop culture landscape.

Speaking of Netflix and all things entertainment, the nation experienced a halt in viewing content with the Hollywood strike. The event resonated with citizens in reality and online, as “why are actors striking” grew by 1,600% in Google searches. This top ‘why’ search query highlights America’s curiosity and concern around Hollywood and its effects on the entertainment industry.

As the digital age continues to advance, sometimes tech-related guidance is needed every now and then. “How to change background color Instagram story” reigns as America’s top ‘how’ question for 2023, spiking by 2,650% in search volumes consistently throughout the year. With social media jobs on the rise, being able to master aesthetics and tech is a must! 

Canada’s 2023 curiosities revealed

Like their neighbors down south, Canadians also found themselves intrigued by the Netflix series “Who is Erin Carter”, resulting in breakout search volumes in the Great White North. For those sports enthusiasts, “who won the Super Bowl 2023” secured a solid second place, with a whopping 4,800% increase in popularity – just 200% away from breakout status. 

Flipping over to a rather interesting ‘what’ question…the live-action Little Mermaid film had Canadians scratching their heads over a certain character. “What kind of Bird is Scuttle” flew by 3,350% in search volumes, creating confusion beyond the box office. People took it to TikTok to figure out what Scuttle’s identity was as it clearly wasn’t a seagull – but a Northern Gannet! The viral topic undoubtedly contributed to the percentage spike in Canada’s Google search bars.

While Black Friday has its roots in the US, the shopping frenzy extends globally – and Canadians are no exception. “When is Black Friday 2023” ranks as Canada’s top ‘when’ question, surging by a whopping 4,400%. A great sale knows no borders, as both countries share the spirit of Black Friday and into the hearts (and shopping carts) of Canadians. 

In the stunning province that is Alberta, the award-winning show The Last of Us debuted its cinematic magic, making Canadians determined not to miss out on one of the biggest TV shows of 2023. The question “where to watch The Last of Us” rose by 1,950% across the nation, making it Canada’s #1 ‘where’ question of the year. As an honourable mention ‘where was The Last of Us filmed’ also witnessed a growth of 1,450% – solidifying the TV series as Canada’s most searched-for show in 2023. 

When Twitter underwent its journey to becoming X, it left Canadians pondering the reason behind the change. “Why is Twitter called X” emerged as the country’s leading ‘why’ question of the year, surging by 1,950% in search volumes. For those who don’t know, Elon Musk simply felt the need to rebrand to secure X users’ freedom of speech within the app. 

As for Canada’s 2023 digital dilemmas, two pressing ‘how’ questions earned breakout status this past year: “how to change time on Fitbit”, and “how to delete Snapchat AI”. It seems that Canadians were on a mission to navigate the intricacies of both tech and time for 2023! 

The search trends of 2023 offer a reflective glimpse of the common questions Americans and Canadians shared in the online world. Whether it’s the lure of blockbuster films, TV series, sporting events, or tech troubleshooting, it mirrors the diverse interests of both nations. 


In December 2023, we used the search query ‘who’, ‘what’, ‘when’, ‘where’, ‘where’, ‘why’ and ‘how’ on Google Trends to identify the most searched for questions in both the US and Canada. Our search parameters were set from January 1st, 2023 to the present day, to specifically target 2023 search volumes.

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