Around the globe, college seniors are preparing to graduate, and many young adults are considering their next steps. How are they using the internet to explore and discover job opportunities?
Search volume and traffic data can tell us which jobs are most popular and which trends are shifting. For instance, tech jobs remain popular, and there is also sustained, growing interest in remote work.
Which jobs attract the most internet searches, and how has that changed over time? What kinds of questions do people ask about potential jobs? Keep reading to find out how the newest generation to hit the workforce is thinking about job opportunities.
Where are people looking for jobs?
Despite recent mass layoffs, tech tops the list of hot job sectors, according to search data. Both globally and in the US from January 2021 to March of 2023, Amazon and Microsoft take first and second place in career page visits.
Other top-visited company sites nationally and globally include Target, Starbucks, Goldman Sachs, Facebook, and Accenture, showing job-related web traffic concentrating around retail, finance, and tech.
When we look at which companies’ job sites have seen the sharpest growth in traffic since January 2021, a very different list materializes.
In terms of web traffic, the fastest-growing company job pages from January 2021 to March of 2023 belong to:
- New York Life (grew 8,300% globally and 12,600% in the US)
- Gilead (grew 1,500% globally and 1,000% in the US)
- AEP (grew 900% globally and in the US)
New York Life is an insurance company, while Gilead is in pharmaceuticals and AEP in energy. These are all opportunities beyond the typical tech craze.
Among job search sites, the top four were consistent across US and global data, revealing a worldwide dominance of go-to resources. Claiming the top spot is Linkedin, followed by Indeed, Glassdoor, and Zip Recruiter, brands that have all risen to household name recognition.
But when we look at the job search sites with the fastest-growing traffic, new players enter the game, particularly those designed for finding remote jobs and virtual work.
From January 2021 to March of 2023, four of the 10 fastest-growing job search sites globally and domestically explicitly center on remote work.
These remote job sites experienced sharp traffic growth from January 2021 to March 2023:
- Just Remote (increased 180% globally and 900% in the US)
- Flex Jobs (increased 170% globally and 43% in the US)
- We Work Remotely (increased by 144% globally and 184% in the US)
- No Desk (increased by 180% globally and 369% in the US)
After COVID forced many of us to work from home, some welcomed the change and now want to stick with it going forward. New websites designed for remote work continue to surge, showing the trend is more than a passing fad.
Given the recent traffic growth these sites have experienced, it may be that upcoming college grads are turning to these resources to make job plans on their own terms.
What jobs are people searching for?
From January 2021 to February 2023, US Google users searched for all kinds of jobs. In first place with the most searches is “government jobs,” followed by “flight attendant jobs” and “medical assistant jobs.”
Tech fields like security and data analysis, medical positions like phlebotomist, and humanities roles like graphic designer and librarian also rank highly for job searches over the past two years.
So, those are some of the industries and positions with the highest job-related search volumes from January 2021 to February 2023. But which job searches experienced the sharpest growth over that same period?
In top place is “anthropology teacher jobs,” which shot up by a whopping 750% in US Google searches. Perhaps the pandemic got more college students and young professionals interested in studying how societies function over time and sharing those lessons with future generations.
The following job-related searches increased 600% from January 2021 to March 2023:
- “Electric motor repairer jobs”
- “Scanner operator jobs”
- “Farm ranch manager jobs”
- “Shaper jobs”
- “Aircraft structure assembler jobs”
Here, we see a fascinating spread across electronics and artistry. On the one hand, technical careers in automotive engineering are on the rise. But we’re also seeing growing interest in more creative roles like working in bakeries and bread making, as with “shaper jobs.”
In the middle of these two trends is scanner operator jobs, which can range from printing graphics to managing document digitization. The rising interest in farm ranch manager jobs also signals that people might want to be spending more time outdoors or working with plants and animals.
How do new workers get their start?
Many upcoming college graduates are searching for roles tailored to their level of experience. Entry-level positions and internships have their own search landscape.
From January 2021 to February 2023, the top-searched internship positions were in accounting, graphic design, and mechanical engineering, showing a stronghold of interest from young professionals in tech, finance, and the arts. Internships in psychology, social work, and nursing also boasted strong search volumes.
But once again, the internships with the fastest-growing search numbers tell a very different story, revealing the less conventional careers surging in popularity at this moment.
From 2021 to 2023, the following internships saw triple-digit growth in US search volumes:
- Forensic science technician internships (up 300%)
- Barber internships (up 250%)
- Set designer internships (up 100%)
- Naval architect internships (up 100%)
- Legal secretary internships (up 100%)
- Barista internships (up 100%)
Our first prize goes to forensic science, which could be experiencing growth due to the explosive popularity of the true crime genre across television, movies, and podcasts.
Search data also signals that post-grad internships are attracting growing interest in general. Queries for “can you do internships after graduation” grew 1,850% from January 2021 to February 2023. This could mean people are seeking — or needing — more work experience before applying or qualifying for full-time positions.
Similar to the diversity of industries popular with prospective interns, the fields that experienced the fastest growth in search volume for “entry level jobs” reveal vastly disparate cultural trends.
For example, searches for “entry level bartending jobs” were up 5,800% from January 2021 to February 2023.
At the same time, tech jobs remain prevalent among trending searches for entry level jobs. The following tech jobs saw US search volume continue to skyrocket:
- Entry level Google jobs (up 4,000%)
- Entry level cyber security jobs (up 3,800%)
- Tech entry level jobs (up 2,850%)
Search traffic for entry-level jobs also reveals another growing truth, as confirmed by many of the job search sites experiencing recent web traffic growth: People increasingly do not want to return to the office.
From January 2021 to February 2023, searches for “entry level cyber security jobs remote” and “entry level jobs with little human interaction” both surged by 3,800%. This suggests that the workplace is changing in nature, and the preferences of the next generation of workers are driving that shift.
Weighing the dollars: Do the numbers add up?
It’s all fine and good to formulate our dream jobs and seek out the perfect opportunities that will set us on our fantasy career paths. But we still have to pay our bills.
The internet is a useful resource for gauging how much different professionals typically get paid, both for people considering a career and those advancing in their industry.
From January 2021 to February 2023, an interesting health-related trend emerges for the most-searched jobs in relation to salaries.
In the US, these roles saw the highest search volumes from people seeking financial insight:
- Dental hygienist salary
- Flight attendant salary
- Medical assistant salary
- Nurse practitioner salary
- Physical therapist salary
- Phlebotomist salary
- Pharmacy technician salary
Many of the top-searched salaries are in medical or pharmaceutical fields. People may be weighing the practicalities of starting out in an assistant capacity or curious how much top-paid surgeons make. It’s also possible that COVID stimulated more interest in health professions in general.
As with job sites and internships, we can discover the less conventional undercurrents of today’s employment landscape by looking at growth. Which salary-related searches have seen the sharpest increases in popularity over the last two years?
You’ll probably never guess the number-one surging query: “lobby attendant salary,” which increased 600% in US searches from January 2021 to February 2023.
Other unexpected jobs experiencing growth in salary-related searches over the same time period include “engraver salary” and “stone cutter salary,” both up 400%, suggesting people are increasingly interested in working with their hands.
We can also look at the growth rates of salary-related queries for entry-level jobs, where even more staggering numbers emerge. Over the same two year period, searches for “human resources salary entry level” and “entry level claims adjuster salary” both grew by 4,700%.
How will the next generation push work forward?
What can we glean from these job trends? From traffic data to search volumes, we’re seeing an interesting shift persist. As more workers seek out virtual job opportunities, resources are materializing to help connect employers with remote workers.
From January 2021 to February 2023, US searches for “how to find legitimate remote jobs” grew by 1,600%, demonstrating a thirst for knowledge and validation when it comes to these types of job opportunities.
Upcoming college graduates have more to choose from than ever before. In addition to deciding between a career in tech or medicine or even teaching anthropology, many soon-to-be grads can also consider working remotely. And they can learn all about their options on the internet’s go-to job sites and fast growing remote job sites.
Interested in discovering more? You can use Semrush tools like Keyword Overview and Traffic Analytics to stay on top of other job-related search trends.