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The most searched for programming languages around the world

(Last updated on October 28, 2020)

As the employment market becomes more competitive, self-taught skills and experience have become increasingly valuable across the globe, and programming languages are no exception. In fact, our latest research found that thousands of individuals are looking to teach themselves how to code with the aid of free resources, such as Google and YouTube.

To identify which programming languages are most self-taught, we used Ahrefs’ Keyword Explorer Tool to identify the coding language with the most searches on Google and YouTube.

The top 10 most searched for programming languages around the world

1.    Python (235,000)

On a global scale, Python is the most searched for programming language to learn. According to our analysis of Google searches, ‘learn Python’ had a total of 182,000 searches, on average, per month on Google around the world, and an average monthly search volume of 53,000 on YouTube, bringing the total number of searches across the platforms to 235,000, on average, each month.

As one of the most versatile coding languages today, it should come as no surprise that this is one of the most popular programming languages for those wanting to learn how to code – particularly beginners. What’s more, our recent study found that it is one of the most sought-after programming languages by employers around the world too!

2.    Java (84,000)

‘Learn Java’ is the second most popular keyword search for those wanting to learn how to code, with a total number of 84,000 average monthly searches across YouTube and Google combined. Our research found that there was an average of 64,000 monthly searches for ‘learn Java’ on Google, and 20,000 on YouTube.

3.    C++ (56,400)

C++ ranked as the third most searched for programming language to learn, with 56,400 searches made across both Google and YouTube, on average, every single month. Searches on Google for ‘learn C++’ reached 48,000 per month, with an additional 8,400 monthly searches for the phrase on YouTube.

It’s also the second most sought-after coding language to have on your CV, according to our latest study!

4.    SQL (45,000)

Our research revealed that SQL is the fourth most searched for programming language when learning how to code independently, with a total average monthly search volume of 45,000 across Google and YouTube. This figure represented an average search volume of 38,000 per month on Google, and 7,000 on YouTube.

5.    PHP (31,400)

Ranking as the fifth most searched for programming language to learn PHP has a total average monthly search volume of 31,400. There were 25,000 searches for ‘learn PHP’ on average using Google each month, and a further 6,400 using YouTube.

6.    R (14,000)

R is the sixth most common programming language people are searching for when learning how to code. Our analysis found that 14,000 searches are made each month, on average, across YouTube and Google combined, with ‘learn R’ searched for 12,000 times per month on Google, and 2,000 times on YouTube.

7.    Swift (7,000)

The seventh most searched for programming language to learn is Swift, with 7,000 searches, on average, each month across YouTube and Google combined. More specifically, we found that ‘learn Swift’ was searched for 6,400 times on average every month on Google, and searched for on YouTube 600 times, on average, each month.

8.    Kotlin (6,200)

The eighth most searched for programming language individuals looking to learn to code is Kotlin, with a total of 6,200 searches on Google and YouTube combined, each month on average. We found that, on average, 5,600 monthly searches are for ‘learn Kotlin’ on Google, and 600 for the same term on YouTube by those wanting to learn how to code in a more visual way.

9.    C Language (5,800)

C Language is the ninth most searched for programming language to learn around the world. In total, ‘learn C Language’ had an average of 5,800 searches across YouTube and Google combined. 4,200 searches were made on Google, and 1,600 on YouTube.

10.  MATLAB (4,600)

Rounding off the list of the top 10 most searched for programming languages is MATLAB, which received 4,600 searches on average every month across both platforms combined. When broken down, this figure includes 4,000 monthly searches on Google, and 600 on YouTube, on average.

The most common coding languages Brits are looking to learn

Python is the most searched for programming language to learn in the UK, with a total of 15,000 searches per month, on average, across YouTube and Google combined.

Java ranks in second, with an average monthly search volume of 4,400 in total from individuals turning to YouTube and Google to learn how to program themselves. Following closely behind in third spot is C++ and SQL, with ‘learn C++’ and ‘learn SQL’ having 3,800 searches, on average, across Google and YouTube each.

PHP comes next, in fifth, with an average of 1,750 searches every month from individuals turning to YouTube and Google to learn how to code.

The most common coding languages Americans are looking to learn

The most common self-mastered programming language in the United States is Python, with 85,000 searches made, on average, across YouTube and Google combined.

In second place is Java, with an average of 25,900 monthly searches across YouTube and Google combined – that’s 59,100 less searches than Python! Following closely behind Java is C++, with 24,400 monthly searches, on average, from individuals turning to YouTube and Google to learn how to code.

SQL placed as the fourth most searched for programming language to learn in the US, with a total number of searches totaling 22,700 every month, on average, across the two platforms. Next up are searches for ‘learn R’, with 7,200 searches, on average, on YouTube and Google combined.

The most common coding languages Canadians are looking to learn

When seeking to learn a programming language, Canadians want to learn Python the most, as they make 7,900 searches across YouTube and Google combined each month, on average.

Second spot goes to Java, with an average of 3,200 searches made every month across the two platforms combined. Following closely behind in third is SQL, with the number of searches reaching 1,950 per month, on average, across YouTube and Google.

C++ was the fourth most searched for programming language to learn in Canada, racking up a total average monthly search volume of 1,600 across YouTube and Google. PHP came next, with 700 searches, on average, on the two platforms combined.

The most common coding languages Australians are looking to learn

Python is also the most searched for programming language to learn in Australia. In total, there are 5,500 searches for ‘learn Python’, on average, every month across YouTube and Google combined.

Java came in second place, with the number of average monthly searches for learning this language on YouTube and Google totaling 1,750 altogether – 3,750 less than first place Python!

Following closely behind in third is C++, with an average monthly search volume of 1,100 across YouTube and Google combined. Next, with a combined average of 840 searches each month across YouTube and Google.

PHP and R ranked in fifth, with both programming languages boasting 390 searches per month, on average, on Google and YouTube combined.

Methodology:

  1. Specopssoft.com found the top 13 most commonly searched for programming languages on Google and YouTube within the last month (September – October 2020). We did this by using Ahrefs.com ‘Keyword Explorer’ to determine which of the 13 programming languages had the most global searches with people trying to find out how to master each language; using phrases like: ‘learn Python’ and ‘learn Java’ etc.
  2. We then refined the search for both Google and YouTube and merged the results together to find the most searched for language globally.
  3. We then investigated to find the average number of searches for these programming languages in the United Kingdom, the United States, Canada, and Australia to see which programming language is the most searched for on Google and YouTube.
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