First, a trip down memory lane. Here's what Google's search page looked like back in 1997:
In 1998, the year Google officially launched, users were making about 500,000 searches per day. Now, there are more than 2.3 million Google searches per second.
That adds up to more than 100,000,000,000 Google searches per month.
For each one, Google takes over 200 factors into account before delivering you the best results to any query in 1/8 of a second.
People rely on Google's services so heavily that when they all went down for 5 minutes in 2013, global internet traffic dropped by 40%.
Google's search index contains over 100 million gigabytes of data. It would take 100,000 one-terabyte personal drives to contain the same amount of data.
Although the 69% of internet browser users who have Chrome don't actually ever type out "Google.com" anymore, the company owns a bunch of domains that are common misspellings of Google, like Gooogle.com, Gogle.com, Googlr.com, and more. Google also owns 466453.com, too ...
Google creates products that it hopes will matter to millions, or even billions, of people. However, it also takes on important projects that matter only to small groups: Google's internationalization team spent more than four years working with reps from Cherokee Nation to bring the language into search (it's also available on Gmail, Chromebooks, and Android).
Since October 2015, more than half of Google's searches happen on mobile.
If you want to dive into your own digital archive, you can visit Google.com/history to see *every single search* tied to your account.
Although moonshot projects like internet-bearing balloons are sexier than ads, the latter keeps the company airborne. Google made ~90% of its revenue from advertising in 2015.