How can DTC brands turn search trends into traffic?

Carrie Rose, founder and CEO of search-first creative agency Rise at Seven, has spent the last few years successfully capitalizing on search trends and user intent, which has led to SEO and link building for brands ranging from PlayStation to the Kardashians.

At a recent Affiliate World event, Carrie shared four of the tools she uses to analyze trends and identify opportunities to turn search volume into traffic quickly. And one of those tools is right under your nose…

1️⃣ Site Search Bar

If you have an ecommerce store or DTC brand, your storefront’s search bar is a gold mine for consumer data. Roughly one in three visitors will perform a site search if they have the option, and users who do are more likely to convert.

Further, if your site is integrated with GA4, you can find site search data in your analytics reports and set up alerts for spikes that indicate a product is trending.

Site Search Bar

2️⃣ Exploding Topics

Did you know that roughly 15% of searches every year on Google are for new terms? And given that Google processes about 2 trillion searches annually, that’s a massive potential market that you can’t unlock by looking for existing terms and phrases.

The solution to this conundrum is a paid tool called Exploding Topics, which surfaces new Google search terms by volume over time:

Exploding Topics

This tool empowers marketers to identify undiscovered trends and capitalize on them as search volume increases.


Even though Google still dominates the overall search market, users on platforms like TikTok, YouTube, and Pinterest are starting to rely more on in-app searches – and marketers need to be able to track these searches too in order to capture conversions.

Carrie has found that is a useful tool for tracking these in-platform searches. That said, Pinterest Trends also makes keyword and search information available for free.

4️⃣ Early Risers

Finally, Carrie wanted a more proactive way to track and identify search trends quickly, so she and her team built Early Risers. Early Risers is a proprietary tool that provides near-real-time updates on trending searches across platforms, including Google, TikTok, YouTube, Pinterest, and more.

The timeliness of the Early Risers data, especially when compared to information from Google Trends and BuzzSumo, makes it easy to verify the trend and leverage that information in everything from product ads to media placements.

For example, Carrie and her team noticed a surge in searches for white Vans shoes after the debut of the Netflix series Squid Game, in which all of the characters wear those shoes. By contacting media outlets with this information quickly, they were able to generate hundreds of links and thousands of visits in a 24-hour period:

Exploding Topics

With all of these opportunities to collect timely user search data, it’s important to keep in mind that the data is only a means to an end. Remember that you’re not trying to capture traffic, or even leads — you’re trying to capture people. The content you create around trending searches should be creative and reflect what people are looking for, not what you think will maximize your algorithmic performance.