Metal Lunch Boxes And Back To School

As we’ve mentioned previously on this blog, people who are searching the internet for “metal lunch boxes” – or similar and related phrases – are usually interested in either buying a lunchbox for day-to-day use, or, are collectors looking for information on auctions or prices.

With this in mind it is interesting to delve a little deeper into the trends and demographics of these online searchers.

How do we do that, I hear you ask? Answer: Google Insights!

Google Insights is a free and fascinating little tool which tells you all about how many people are searching for a given phrase and how the trend changes through time. Finally, it allows you to see where people are making those searches, e.g., in North America, Australia, Europe, etc.

So for a little bit of fun, let’s take a look at some of the more common phrases that people would search for in our area of interest.

First, if you go to Google Insights and enter the term “tin lunch boxes” then you are presented with this graph:

Tin Lunch Boxes - Back To School Trend

Tin Lunch Boxes - Back To School Trend

Now, all very interesting you might say, but what does this prove? Well firstly we can see that the long term trend is fairly stable through time. However, what is very apparent are the spikes which seem to occur in the second half of each year. This of course confirms what many of us lunch box enthusiasts know already, which is that interest peaks during the back to school period that runs approximately from late July to early September.

If this data is correct – and we’ve no real reason not to believe it – then it shows that web searches on this phrase peak in August every year and are in fact more than double the level of the rest of the year! For collectors, this is very important as many of them have said that they see auction prices for vintage pieces increase in the weeks during and after this period.

The tool also allows you to display more than one search term at a given time. The following graph shows a comparison between the previous one (in blue) and the search phrase “metal lunch boxes” (in red):

Metal Lunch Boxes - Back To School Trend

Blue = “Tin Lunch Boxes” & Red = “Metal Lunch Boxes”

We can see that this new term shows the same seasonal pattern but has a greater number of total searches.

Finally, the output shows the “regional interest” and again this quantifies what many of us already suspected – namely, that the interest in this collectors’ niche is predominately US based:

Lunch Boxes Regional Interest

Lunch Boxes Regional Interest

Obviously, the good folks in the United Kingdom also have a passing interest too! It would be great to delve further into this and look at trends for individual designs like “Mickey Mouse lunchbox” or “Hello Kitty Lunch Box”, but unfortunately the Insights tool tells you that there is not enough data!