In an analysis shared exclusively with Fast Company, SimilarWeb looked at five top job sites including indeed.com, glassdoor.com, ziprecruiter.com, monster.com, and careerbuilder.com, and compared traffic to those sites from the period between March through November in both 2020 and 2019. The analysis reveals that average monthly visits decreased by 6.2%, with monster.com experiencing the sharpest decline and LinkedIn remaining the most stable. The latter was likely due to the fact that the platform has a networking component and not just job listings.
“The decline [overall] was most dramatic from March to April,” the report’s authors state, “dropping from a total of 271.7 million to 195.6 million. That tide turned upward in the summer months as unemployment benefits began to expire and the number of COVID-19 cases was beginning to slow, especially in large cities such as New York and San Francisco, which are also home to many businesses.
Tracking the hot spots of the pandemic alongside unemployment numbers shows that as businesses shutter or even pivot, the workforce is suffering. The latest unemployment data from the BLS indicate that the second wave of COVID-19 is turning up the number of weekly unemployment claims to just shy of a million (947,000) and the number of freelance and self-employed workers also ticked up to over 425,000 that applied for Pandemic Unemployment Assistance.
There may be one bright spot. SimilarWeb finds that employers are returning to online jobs platforms at a faster rate than jobseekers. “This [could be] due to the need for businesses to rebalance their net headcount reductions,” the analysts note. “As of the last week in November, job employer traffic saw positive year over year growth at +9.2%, however, this increase in job employer traffic was the lowest it was compared to other weeks in November ranging from +10% – +12%.”