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Digital Transformation Brexit EU Referendum

Post-Brexit search trends reveal no changes to searches for holidays in immediate aftermath, but show surge in political questions


By Rebecca Stewart | Trends Editor

July 20, 2016 | 4 min read

The UK’s interest in politics has increased by 7000 per cent post-Brexit, according to internet search data from consumer behaviour tracker Hitwise.

EU brand

The UK’s interest in politics surged by 7000 per cent post-Brexit

While there was a 300 per cent increase in searches from Brits looking to move abroad in the immediate aftermath of Britain’s vote to leave the EU, there was no change to search trends in relation to shoppers looking for holidays or flights online, according to the research.

The data was collected from a range of search providers, which lets Hitwise monitor the internet searches of three million people across the UK. The figures took into account search trends from the week beginning from 4 June through to 9 July.

Key trends were particularly evident across financial and travel related searches, demonstrating that Brits were keen to take matters into their own hands to find out more about the consequences of Britain’s vote to leave the EU.

Searches to join one of the parties represented in the House of Commons increased by 7000 per cent during and after the campaign.

Meanwhile, a high volume of Brits looked to be mulling a move overseas in the days following the vote with there being a 300 per cent rise in searches for ‘move to [one of the eight leading countries or EU]’ after the Referendum – though those searches have since returned to pre-Brexit levels. However, passport searches remain high suggesting that Brits are keeping their options open with regards to options like dual citizenship.


Despite the pound weakening in the days after Brexit, searches for holidays and flights remained unchanged and followed a similar pattern to the same time last year.

Unsurprisingly, in the hours after the Referendum result concern over the value of the pound promoted related searches to skyrocket, and while the initial rush to check the rate against other global currencies has ebbed, related searches two weeks after the referendum were still more than three-times higher than they were before the vote.


Nigel Wilson, managing director at Hitwise, said: "These results show us that Brexit is driving concern across the entire country in terms of how it will impact peoples’ lives and future ambitions. While significant numbers of Brits are unlikely to actually uproot and move abroad, the findings from our data provide insight into the nation’s response.

"During this sensitive time, it’s important for marketers to understand the rapidly changing feels Brits have towards their lifestyle and life plans and it is important for brands to acknowledge the effect this is having on Britain’s online behaviour.”"

Digital Transformation Brexit EU Referendum

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