WeChat Index Tutorial
According to the most recent data, WeChat has passed a milestone of a billion users which puts it far ahead of any other Chinese social media platform. Measuring trends on such an enormous network could potentially bring the most statistically accurate data to marketers.
Up until a few weeks ago, it was not possible to get a hold of such metrics on WeChat. Fortunately, the platform has just released a new WeChat Index tool that allows viewing some basic trends on keywords.
The good news is that, from marketers’ perspective, WeChat is finally moving in the right direction. However, the bad news is that the data that is generated by WeChat Index is very limited. There are no any equivalents to options available from the previously reviewed tools: Baidu Index, Qihoo Index and Weibo Index.
In order to access the tool, user has to enter Chinese words “微信指数”into the search bar and tap on the first result. This opens up the prompt as shown above.
If one is planning to use WeChat Index frequently, it easier to simply pin this page to the top of the chat sessions by choosing option “Sticky on Top”.
Typing the keyword “iPhone8” returns the search trend graph:
Just like with the other index tools, the data can be viewed for 7, 30 or 90 days but there is no option to customize the date range:
It is still not clear what the total number (350,016 in this example) actually represents. In fact, it remains the same no matter what date range is chosen (a bug?):
Although, WeChat Index is a good start, in its present form, it can hardly offer any useful information. Also, it seems that only popular keywords, probably those with high enough search volumes, can be viewed.
Despite the fact that WeChat could record all the search and user related data, WeChat Index doesn’t display any geographical distribution, audience analysis or related keywords. So, essentially, it is only good for getting an idea on general search trends within the network for certain popular keywords.
Release of WeChat Index to the public is still a very good start and points to the possible course correction by Tencent. It has started to move, albeit slowly, from a private communication network to discovery platform.
Also, WeChat search function now has more options and is increasingly used for searches on wide range of topics. In order to read the articles from the search results, one has to follow the account it was posted on which opens another route for official WeChat accounts to acquire new followers.