Guesstimate — Calculate the number of queries answered by Google per second

Welcome to Day 5/30 of Mastering Guesstimates

Sanyam Aggarwal
2 min readAug 25, 2023

Q. Calculate the number of queries answered by Google per second.

Clarifying Questions:

  1. Any particular geography like India, US?
  2. Any particular kind of users?
  3. Only on Google browser or also searches on youtube and other google products?
  4. Any particular device type — IOS or Android? and for App or Website?

A. Calculate for the whole world, no specific user type, only google browser and for both app (IOS and Android) and website.

Assumptions:

  1. The world population is ~8 billion.
  2. World Internet Penetration Rate let’s assume ~50%
  3. Google Search Engine market share is 80%

Approach:

Population = 8 billion

Population having access to the Internet = 50%(8 billion) = ~4 billion

Population using Google Search Engine = 80%(4 billion) = ~3 billion

Dividing the population based on number of searches in a day:

  1. Power Users = 20% (Searches 5 times daily)
  2. Active Users = 30% (Searches 2 times daily)
  3. Passive Users = 50% (Searches once or twice in a month like our parents, grandparents etc, so going to neglect these)

Average queries per person a day = (0.2*5) + (0.3*2) = 1.6 Searches

Total Searches in a Day = 3 billion X 1.6 = 4.8 billion

Total Searches per second = 4.8 billion / (24*60*60) = ~55000 Searches Per Second

Thank you for taking time to go through this guesstimate. I value your feedback and would greatly appreciate your thoughts. Please feel free to share your feedback in the comments below.

Stay tuned for Day 6/30 of Mastering Guesstimates, Until then, let curiosity be your guide and let the adventure begin!

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Sanyam Aggarwal

Data and Product Enthusiast | Follow Me 🫶 to Conquer the Art of solving Guesstimates