If Google search activity is any sort of yardstick, residents of the St. Louis, MO, metro area really cared about lawn care last year.
A LawnStarter review of Google Trends data found that people in the St. Louis area searched for the term “lawn care” more than residents of any other metro area did in 2015.
Google Trends analyzes a percentage of all searches for a term like “lawn care” within the same time and location parameters, and then assigns a search score (1 through 100) to a geographic region. In 2015, the St. Louis area hit the highest number on the Google Trends scale — 100 — for the term “lawn care.” That far outdistanced the second-place region on the list: the Google-combined Florida metro areas of Tampa-St. Petersburg and Sarasota, which collectively scored an 83.
For a detailed explanation of how Google Trends works, visit https://goo.gl/M7QJxw.
‘Perfect Storm’ for St. Louis
Nathan Brandt, a horticulture specialist with University of Missouri Extension in the St. Louis area, attributes the local spike in Google searches for lawn care to “some pretty intense” issues with lawn disease following Tropical Storm Bill, whose remnants dumped heavy rain on the region in June 2015.
“Ugly brown patches were showing up in just about every lawn. The storm was literally a ‘perfect storm’ for this disease, which is called ‘brown patch’,” Brandt says.
In June 2015, the St. Louis area received a deluge of rain thanks to Tropical Storm Bill.
Brandt thinks last year’s bump in search traffic related to lawn care in the St. Louis area was a one-time occurrence. He bases that assessment on the number of visits to his Facebook page during the week that Tropical Storm Bill struck.
“I’ve never had more than a few hundred people reached by my Facebook posts, but that week’s post on ‘brown patch’ hit about 7,000,” Brandt says.
Here is our list of the top nine metro areas for “lawn care” search activity on Google in 2015.
1. St. Louis, MO
Google Trends Score: 100
2. Tampa–St. Petersburg/Sarasota, FL*
Google Trends Score: 83
3. Orlando/Daytona Beach/Melbourne, FL**
Google Trends Score: 78
4. Detroit, MI
Google Trends Score: 75
5. Minneapolis-St. Paul, MN
Google Trends Score: 72
6. Atlanta, GA
Google Trends Score: 65
7. Philadelphia, PA
Google Score: 57
8 (tie). Chicago, IL
Google Score: 55
8 (tie). Dallas-Fort Worth, TX
Google Score: 55
*Tampa-St. Petersburg and Sarasota, FL, are separate metro areas that were grouped in search results by Google Trends.
**Orlando, Daytona Beach and Melbourne, FL, are separate metro areas that were grouped in search results by Google Trends.
Top photo: Flickr/Izee