YouTube says people are watching instructional videos more than ever as they seek new skills during lockdown.

Videos with titles like “how to” and “step-by-step” are being viewed for 65% longer than this time last year, the platform said.


Meanwhile, questions which begin “how to…” are increasingly appearing in search engine trends.

At the same time, online shoppers are in the market for garden plants, lawn mowers, free weights and hair dye.

“There are lots of ‘how to’ questions,” said Nalina Eggert, an SEO expert at the BBC.

“How to make hand sanitiser, face masks and bread, how to cut your hair.”

Nalina has seen a notable rise in questions about grammar, punctuation, fractions, human biology and history since the closure of UK schools – as well as specific medical queries surrounding Covid-19, such as whether the virus can be caught twice, and whether it affects pets.

Then there are more serious search trends – questions about furlough, the R number and medical queries specific to Covid-19 symptoms and prognosis.

“There’s also a much higher-than-usual search for sympathy cards,” Nalina added.

“It’s the highest it’s ever been. People are looking to buy them, but the most related search is what to write in them. You imagine it may be people who have never had to send one before. My heart goes out to them.”

And on a lighter note, there’s one question which pops up on Nalina’s charts every Friday.

“‘What time can you buy alcohol in Scotland?’ is a regular Friday search. We all need to mark the weekend somehow.”

 

-BBC