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Similarweb Digital Intelligence Report: From Travel Bookings To Job Board Listings, Signs Of Recovery Evident Across The Board

Travel bookings beat pre-pandemic numbers at over 17M in May

Traffic shifted away from desktops with a 2-percentage point increase in share of mobile web browsing

Employer (vs job seeker) traffic to job sites hit its peak in the second week of April at a nearly 300% increase YoY

Similarweb (SMWB), a leading digital intelligence company, released a report showcasing the impact, across industries, of COVID-19 recovery in both the U.S. and U.K..

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“Our proprietary digital intelligence platform shows clear indicator signals of the recovery,” said Greg Malen, VP of Solutions at Similarweb. “Across key sectors of the economy — travel, entertainment and shopping — we are starting to see a return to normal patterns, often above pre-COVID-19 levels.”

Using the time period of January-May as a comparative baseline for 2020 and 2021, key recovery trends include:

People are searching for work, but employers still lead the way

Monthly traffic for the top five job sites in both the U.S. and U.K. increased by 20.2% and 97.5% YoY, respectively. But, through an analysis of separate URLs for employers and employees as a proxy for job supply vs. demand, it is evident that employers are returning to job sites at a faster rate than job seekers.

In the U.S., job employer traffic has had positive YoY growth since the first week in January, and hit its most recent peak the second week of April at +299.1%.

U.S. travel bookings hit a new high

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The top five OTA/Metasearch sites in the U.S. show a 24.3% increase in average monthly traffic YoY.

As of May 2021, traffic sits at 302.5M, which is higher than pre-pandemic levels (268.6M in January 2020 and 248M in February 2020). Unsurprisingly, the biggest dip in traffic occurred at the start of the pandemic with a drop of 117.7% between March and April 2020, from 161.7M to 74.3M.

According to Similarweb’s Travel Intelligence, not only are people browsing travel sites, they are also converting into customers. US bookings hit 17.01M this past May, which is higher than pre-pandemic levels of 16.59M in January 2020, and 16.51M in February 2020.

In the U.K., bookings hit 2.782M this past May — while not higher than pre-pandemic levels, it is higher than any month YTD, and also 670.6% higher than May 2020.

Traffic shifts back to mobile

With more people stuck at home, traffic share in 2020 shifted from mobile web browsing to desktop. This year, there is a 2-percentage point shift back to mobile web browsing based on an index of the top 100 sites in the US.

This 2-percentage point shift in share equates to a 21.4% increase in volume of mobile web visits (111.836B to 135.818B), compared to a 16.4% increase for the category as a whole, and a 12.4% increase for desktop visits.

Face-to-Face fitness a popular site used for booking in-person fitness classes, hit its highest level of traffic since before the pandemic at 784.7K total visits in May. This is 113.4% higher than May 2020 at 367.6K.

Data also show that people are interested in details on when gyms are opening and what options are located in their area — keywords including “gym openings,” “gyms near me,” and related phrases hit their highest volume over the past year in May at 1.854M searches, up 31.5% from April.

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