October 01, 2012

Online Job Portals: Traffic Trends by Site

This month we profile the top four job sites and analyze various trends. Careerbuilder.com, monster.com, simplyhired.com and indeed.com are the job portals of choice when it comes to job-hunting online. The sites are continuously evolving, responding to the shifting employment trends, competition, technology, and macro-economic environment. Particularly useful for job-seekers, with the recession and unemployment, portals increase their reach for companies and job-seekers alike to explore more options.

Google Search Index Trends for Top Jobsites in 2012

Declining Search Engine Traffic

Holiday season is the peak business period. Given the month, factoring in recruiting cycles and working backwards, we can estimate that recruiting of temporary workers for this busy period happens around October. Demand for skilled labor every year is steady till September and peaks around end of September-beginning of October. October onwards, most businesses postpone any recruiting to the next year. While the BLS Jobs Report shows healthy numbers this month, it is rather counter-intuitive that fewer people are searching for jobs online. Compared to the last two years this trend is unique. (Refer graph Fig. 1: Google Search index trends for top jobsites in 2012)

The reasons for such lie possibly in the use of alternate channels. Since most jobs are temporary during the holiday season and fresh hiring is low, premature online search reduction is understandable.

Site Metrics

The acquisition of Indeed.com by Recruit.com has heated up the jobsite battle. Daily traffic trends on top sites indicate that Indeed.com and Monster.com are the portals with the highest traffic volume.

Site design parameters combined with viewership metrics from the table indicate slow site load speeds contributing to low valued time spent on CareerBuilder and Simply Hired. It is also interesting to note that monster.com has the highest bounce rate, i.e. half the viewers do not proceed beyond landing page. So the conversion of any visit to site to any meaningful business transaction/login is significantly low. Contrast this with Indeed that has the best (lowest) bounce rate, indicating that somewhere Indeed is getting it right, thus earning them the top spot. It is noteworthy that these metrics are monitored regularly by site administrators and changes are done dynamically so numbers can change quickly in response to viewer feedback.

DCR Workforce holds the view that job portals will undergo some strategic market restructuring since the acquisition last month. Job portal volumes are predicted to slide steadily down post-elections, holiday season, and winter.

Social Media Usage Across Geography

Apart from wide exposure, trust in professional and social media through networking with the right people is becoming the user mantra for making the optimum use of Social Media. In 2012, usage of online social profiles increased by 10% from 6% in 2011.

Facebook, with its large user volume and popularity, is an instrumental tool for recruiters conducting background checks, and candidate references.

More than 50% of recruiters do not use personal online information from social media portals for candidate judgment. Targeting specific set of skills in passive candidates, company branding and visibility are the key benefits and attraction of social media.

Agency recruiters have a greater presence in all social platforms as compared to corporations.

Warehouse, aerospace, and telecommunication are among the top 10 industries posting jobs on Facebook in the U.S.A, and these skills are widely used in big industries. But keeping in view the usage of Facebook by big companies recruiters, these skills might be used by small and medium type support industries.