Africa: Here's What Africans Searched For On Google In 2018

13 December 2018

Cape Town — It's been a long 12 months, and before we kick 2018 to the curb, we're looking back at all the trends and topics that you, dear Africans, have been searching for.

Fortunately, Google's Year in Search 2018 site doesn't only rank searches globally but allows for country-by-country search breakdowns.

Global search trends saw the world rummage into things like politics, celebrity deaths and sports.

Different countries, on the other hand, had their sights set in a somewhat different direction.

Follow along with us as we look back at the year in review, and we hope this makes you smile more than frown - because you'll surely do both.


Nigeria's top-trending lists contain major events in news, loses, movies, sports, lyrics and questions - with Manchester United footballer Alexis Sanchez as both the most-searched person and the most searched sportsperson of 2018. Black Panther searches made it at the very top too.

Interestingly, this year's top searches were related to voting.

2018's most searched news event was the Osun elections, which gripped national attention in September due to alleged incidents of voter intimidation and interference.

Nigeria's main opposition leader, Atiku Abubakar, the late actresses Tosyn Bucknor and Aisha Abimbola are among the most searched people.

Nigeria's No 1 search terms:

Alexis Sanchez

Stan Lee

One Ticket ( Kizz Daniel Ft. Davido)

Black Panther

Osun Elections

How to check Jamb result

Fever (Wizkid)

Russia 2018

South Africa

This year's trending searches show South Africans' keen interest in local celebrities, politics, and just curious about what is happening in the world. From celebrities to more personal concerns, South Africans have Zuma, listeriosis, Global Citizen, Winnie Mandela, HHP and Loadshedding at the top of their searches list.

Meanwhile, the 'near me' list shows just how much they have come to rely on online sources to find jobs. Oops and fast food too.

South Africa's No 1 search terms:

Jobs near me

How did Avicii die?

Oxtail recipes

World Cup Fixtures


World Cup fixtures 


In Kenya, the trending searches were mainly dominated by events and personalities. Kenyans' enthusiasm for football was once again seen in the fact that 'World Cup 2018' took the top spot in the trending searches, as people went online to find out more about their favourite country teams and players.

The 2018 FIFA World Cup and the slain Rongo University student Sharon Otieno and ex-lover to Migori Governor Okoth Obado respectively topped Google searches. Self-styled National Resistance Movement general Miguna Miguna came third whereas Kenya Certificate of Primary Education results made it to the fourth position in the search engine.

The trending events list was dominated by FIFA World Cup 2018, followed by the swearing-in of Raila Odinga as the People's President in January 2018. The Lunar Eclipse was the third most searched event, followed by the 78-day lecturers' strike. In fifth place was Prince Harry and Meghan Markle's royal wedding.

Others who trended in Kenya were Citizen TV's Jackie Maribe who together with her boyfriend Joseph Irungu were both arrested in connection to the killing of 28-year-old Nairobi businesswoman Monica Nyawira Kimani.

All Kenya's No 1 search terms:

Sharon Otieno

World Cup 2018

Alexis Sanchez

What is lunar eclipse?


The inevitable conclusion from perusing the top question searches is that Zimbabweans are clearly in need of sex education classes. From asking Google how to make love, how to kiss and what is love at the very top.

The top personalities list reflects three opposition politicians, the late Swedish musician Avicii and two sports stars, and five other figures related to current affairs and news events.

What did you think would be the most searched person, term or the most asked question on Google for your country?

All Zimbabwe's No 1 search terms:

Nelson Chamisa

How to make love

World Cup Fixtures

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