It goes without saying that the past two years have brought about unprecedented changes to business around the world. By analyzing the estimated website traffic, we can begin to understand how much various industries have been impacted by COVID-19 and whether things are starting to rebound now restrictions are slowly being lifted.
The methods we used to produce this comparative analysis of top website traffic performance included visiting Similarweb. The site includes different categories such as Business Services, Arts and Entertainment, Community and Society, and many more. We used these categories and pulled out the top-performing websites and rankings from each category.
We then used SEMRush to check estimated organic traffic from January 2020 vs. January 2022 for each of the domains in our lists. Organic traffic is the estimated number of unique visitors to a website from sources other than paid advertising. It is calculated by subtracting the number of paid visits from the total number of visits. The purpose of organic traffic is to measure the success of a website’s marketing efforts without the influence of paid advertising.
Some of our findings have been very interesting, while others have been totally expected.
Top Website’ Traffic Performance by Country
Top 10 Worldwide Websites
Across the world, online business has been booming. People have also had more time to interact on various social media channels. Amazon has enjoyed an increase in traffic of over 20%. Twitter and Instagram have also experienced significant traffic increases, although it looks like YouTube and Facebook have fallen out of favor slightly.
Top 10 UK Websites
In the UK, there have been plenty of ups and downs. As expected, Amazon has seen a growth of almost 25%. The NHS website has enjoyed a massive increase in traffic of more than 90%. There are obviously more people concerned about their health than ever before.
Top 10 Australian Websites
The biggest winner during the pandemic was a real estate website. Perhaps more people have been looking to move out of the cities to places where they think they’ll be safer. The biggest losers were eBay and News.com. However, overall, traffic growth has been positive for the top Aussie websites.
Top 10 Canadian Websites
Canadian Tire has experienced the most extensive growth and that shouldn’t be so surprising as more people are choosing to shop online than ever before. The only sites that have experienced a decline are Kijiji and the Weather Network. Overall, Canadian websites have enjoyed healthy growth in traffic.
Top 10 Bulgarian Websites
Shkolo and Winbet are the big winners in Bulgaria. Shkolo is a site that focuses on the digital learning experience, while Winbet is one of the biggest players in the online casino industry. The increases in traffic for these sites are a reflection of what’s been happening during the pandemic. Kids are spending more time learning at home, while adults are looking for new ways to pass the time and keep themselves entertained.
Top 10 German Websites
Germany has experienced an increase in traffic across all the top 10 German websites. The biggest increase was the daily online news channel Tagesschau together with the online shopping channel Otto.
Top 10 Russian Websites
In Russia, it’s the online shopping channels that have enjoyed the highest increases in traffic. Ozon is the top performer followed closely behind by Wild Berries. Gogsuslugi.ru is another site that has seen an increase in traffic, but that could be because it’s a one-stop shop for COVID-related information.
Top 10 Ukrainian Websites
The winners in Ukraine are Rozetka and Prom. Unsurprisingly, they are both online shopping stores. Following a common trend across many countries, the news sites Yandex and Obozrevatel have seen a decline in traffic.
Top Websites’ Traffic Performance by Category
Top 10 Arts & Entertainment Websites
With more people stuck at home during the pandemic, it’s no surprise that arts and entertainment websites have enjoyed an increase in traffic. Youtube’s traffic has decreased very slightly, but apart from that media channels such as Netflix and Disney Plus have been the biggest winners.
Top 10 Business and Consumer Services Websites
Business and consumer services is another industry that has experienced significant growth. In the top 10 business and consumer services websites, there are none that have had a decline in traffic over the last 12 months.
Top 10 Community and Society Websites
There have been both winners and losers in the top 10 community and society websites. Religious websites seem to be enjoying an increase in traffic. Bible.com and the Church of Jesus Christ have experienced the highest increases. The dating site POF.com has seen the highest decline in visitors.
Top 10 Computers, Electronics and Technology Websites
People are using their social network channels much more now they can’t get out and meet friends and family in person quite so much. Twitter, Instagram, and Whatsapp have experienced an increase in traffic, but the biggest success over the last 12 months has been enjoyed by Zoom. This could be because more people are now working from home, but Zoom is also a great platform if you want to learn something new.
Top 10 E-commerce and Shopping Websites
It should come as no surprise that the top 10 eCommerce and shopping websites have experienced an increase in traffic. Rakuten is the best performer with an increase in traffic of more than 200%. Etsy and Pinduoduo have also enjoyed significant increases in traffic.
Top 10 Finance Websites
There have been a lot of changes for people over the last 12 months with regards to work and income. Many people have been laid off, on furlough, or lost their jobs completely. An increasing number of people are also exploring freelancing opportunities and researching passive incomes. Finance websites have seen an increase in traffic, but OpenSea has enjoyed an unprecedented increase in traffic of almost 14.5K%.
Top 10 Food and Drink Websites
Food and drink websites have also seen a boom in their popularity. More people are staying at home and getting creative in the kitchen so it’s not surprising that cooking sites such as All Recipes and Food Network have seen an increase in traffic. However, increases pale in comparison with the 5405.83% increase that the website ichi-oshi.jp has experienced.
Top 10 Gambling Websites
Online casinos have been rubbing their hands with glee as more and more people are looking to gambling sites for their entertainment. Betking.com has hit the jackpot with an increase in traffic of over 17.5K%.
Top 10 Games Websites
People haven’t been able to get out and about as much during the last two years due to lockdowns. This has meant they’re looking for entertainment options they can enjoy in their own homes. An obvious winner is the gaming industry. Some websites have seen a decline in traffic, but generally, the trend is a growth in traffic figures.
Top 10 Health Websites
Health is another industry that has enjoyed some significant successes over the last two years. We’ve all become very concerned with our health, keeping fit, eating well, and tracking the spread of COVID and all its variations. The CDC website has seen a significant increase in traffic, but that’s not surprising as it is the main source of global COVID-related information.
Top 10 Heavy Industry and Engineering Websites
The biggest increase in traffic has been for the QCC.com website, an industrial and commercial information query site based in China. Skyscrapercity.com has seen the biggest decline in traffic, but overall, the industry has seen an increase in website traffic.
Top 10 Hobbies and Leisure Websites
With more leisure time, people are looking for ways to keep themselves busy, have fun, and learn new things. From the figures for traffic in the top ten hobbies and leisure websites, it looks like photography is experiencing a revival. Unsplash, istockphoto, Shutterstock, and Pixabay are websites dedicated to sharing stock photographs.
Top 10 Home and Garden Websites
Pottering in the garden, growing flowers, and vegetables at home are enjoying a resurgence in popularity. More people are also finding they’ve got the time to refresh their homes. No wonder so many home and garden websites have seen an increase in traffic.
Top 10 Jobs and Career Websites
Over the last couple of years, many people have looked at their careers and thought about a change in direction. Job losses have also meant people are looking for other ways to make money. On the whole, job and career websites have seen an increase in traffic.
Top 10 Law & Government Websites
The top ten law and government websites have all experienced an increase in traffic over the last 24 months. The biggest increase was the Inland Revenue Service in the US which saw an increase in traffic of over 200%.
Top 10 Lifestyle Websites
Isolation and restrictions have been very challenging but some positives have come out of the pandemic. One of those is that people have examined their own lives much more than ever before. This has led to an increase in people considering lifestyle changes and the result is an increase in traffic for most of the top 10 lifestyle websites.
Top 10 News & Media Websites
The figures for news and media websites are a mixed bag. Some have enjoyed an increase in traffic, such as Yahoo, Globo, and Naver. Sites such as MSN and UOL have seen a decline in internet traffic.
Top 10 Pets & Animals Websites
The number of pet videos has definitely increased during the last pandemic, which could be a sign that pet owners are feeling more connected and enjoying more time with their pets. The top 10 pet and animal websites are also reflecting this trend.
Top 10 Reference Materials Websites
Could we manage to live without online reference tools such as ScienceDirect, Mirriam Webster, and Britannica? If the changes in traffic are anything to go by, it seems the answer is no. ScienceDirect, for example, has seen a growth in traffic of almost 150%.
Top 10 Science & Education Websites
Alongside the increase in traffic to reference material websites, science and education websites are also seeing healthy increases in traffic. With so much free time, it’s no surprise that we’re looking for ways to improve our knowledge.
Top 10 Sports Websites
The pandemic has meant that many sporting events have been canceled or spectators have been taken out of the equation. Rather than miss out completely, it seems we’ve turned to sports websites for our sporting fix.
Top 10 Travel & Tourism Websites
Another mixed bag for travel and tourism websites. Many booking sites such as Trip Advisor and Booking.com have seen a decline in traffic. However, it’s not all doom and gloom because Airbnb and VRBO have seen an increase in traffic.
Top 10 Vehicles Websites
COVID restrictions have led to some changes in the way people shop and purchase cars. It’s not a case of traveling to your nearest car showroom anymore. Now you can purchase vehicles online there’s no need to leave home at all. Car buyers are choosing to do most of their research online first, with sites such as Autohome, Auto.ru, Autoevolution, and CarView seeing a sizeable increase in traffic.
Top 10 Adult Websites
The winners in this genre are OnlyFans and Jerkmate. Bongacams is the only website that has seen a decline in traffic, which is a good indication that this industry has enjoyed some success over the last 24 months.
We can’t predict for sure what is going to happen over the next few months and even years. However, the information we’ve shared can help shape your decision making process in the future.
On the whole, figures show that the trend is for an increase in website traffic across most industries. We’re spending more time at home and that tends to mean we’re spending more time online, whether that’s shopping, learning something new, looking for inspiration, or keeping up with the latest news and information.