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Gen Z is using TikTok and Instagram in place of Google

Google is being affected by Gen Z’s use of social media in place of Google as a search engine

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The Google logo is seen at the Google headquarters in Brussels, Tuesday March 23, 2010.

The Google logo is seen at the Google headquarters in Brussels, on Tuesday, March 23, 2010. Google’s spot as the top search engine is being impacted by TikTok, Instagram.

Virginia Mayo, Associated Press

According to internal data, Google found that around 40% of Gen Z is using social media in place of Google. When looking for a place to eat or to find an answer to a question, Gen Z is becoming more likely to search on TikTok or Instagram, according to Insider.

The news: At Fortune’s Brainstorm Tech conference, Google’s Senior Vice President Prabhakar Raghavan highlighted the shift in internet usage among generations.

  • “In our studies, something like almost 40% of young people, when they’re looking for a place for lunch, they don’t go to Google Maps or Search,” Raghavan said, per TechCrunch. “They go to TikTok or Instagram.”
  • This data was accumulated through Google’s internal research, including a survey of U.S. internet users ages 18-24.

Why? The survey found that younger people prefer “visually rich” forms of search, according to TechCrunch.

  • Morning Brew commented on the data, “Turns out when it comes to finding a lunch spot, young people are more interested in seeing @user17893490234’s fancam of its most aesthetic cocktails than a one-star Yelp review about its least accommodating manager.”

Google’s response: After these findings, Raghavan realized that Google needed to lean toward more visually oriented content to keep younger users engaged, TechCrunch reported. The company already has a couple of features that have recently launched or are in development that lean into visual content.

  • Multisearch, a feature recently launched by Google, allows you to use image and text to find what you’re looking for. By uploading a screenshot to Google, the technology will find similar options near you.
  • “For example, say you see a colorful dish online you’d like to try — but you don’t know what’s in it, or what it’s called. When you use multisearch to find it near you, Google scans millions of images and reviews posted on web pages, and from our community of Maps contributors, to find results about nearby spots that offer the dish so you can go enjoy it yourself,” Google stated about its new plan.
  • Currently, Google has a feature called “scene exploration” in development. This feature allows you to point your camera at objects around you, and Google will give you insights on the scene.
  • “Imagine you’re trying to pick out the perfect candy bar for your friend who’s a bit of a chocolate connoisseur. You know they love dark chocolate but dislike nuts, and you want to get them something of quality,” Google explained. “With scene exploration, you’ll be able to scan the entire shelf with your phone’s camera and see helpful insights overlaid in front of you.”