Saturday, May 25, 2002

Job site user numbers soar


Nearly half a million Internet users in Hong Kong visited an online job site from their computers at home last month, a 40 per cent increase from the same time last year.

Peter Steyn of Nielsen//NetRatings said the increase outpaced the 20 per cent growth in Internet use that Hong Kong saw that month.

Nielsen's findings were based on tracking home access habits of a panel of 3,000 Web users. Because the survey is limited to home users, it does not include sites that people access from the office during working hours. topped the list of sites, attracting 183,020 unique users last month., which ranked No 1 last year, had fallen to No 5, with 77,154 unique users.

Mr Steyn attributed the change to's recent heavy spending on Internet banner advertisements, especially at Microsoft's MSN portal.

"It really shows how well online promotions are working," he said.

Even if users did not click through, they often remembered names and went back later to advertised sites, he added.

The Government's job site came in at No 3 with 99,262 users, although visitors to the site spent far more time and viewed more pages than they did at any other site.

Although Hong Kong's Internet users were becoming more comfortable with looking for jobs online, the rise was "probably reflective of the economy", Mr Steyn said.

The unemployment rate has recently hit 7.1 per cent, with nearly 250,000 people out of work, according to government statistics.

The online job-seekers were more likely to be female.

While women make up only 44 per cent of the general Web audience in Hong Kong, they make up 51 per cent of the online job-seeking audience, according to Nielsen.

Mr Steyn said this was reflected elsewhere on the Web, as women tended to go online to have access to more practical information, seeking out sites about education and career.

"They're doing a bit more constructive things online," Mr Steyn said.

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