Power of Local: Craigslist Top Search Term

picture-201Hitwise is reporting that “Craigslist was the top search term” last week. According to the blog post just out:

For the first time in three years, searches for ‘craigslist’ surpassed ‘myspace,’ highlighting the increasing popularity of online classifieds during the economic downturn.U.S. searches on the term “craigslist” have increased 105 percent for the week ending March 14, 2009, compared with the same week last year. This is the first time that the query has been the top search term in the United States, having surpassed the term “myspace,” which had been the top term since March 11, 2006.

More from Hitwise:


What are people doing on Craigslist?

  • Looking for jobs
  • Selling their stuff
  • Looking for cheaper/used versions of things they might have bought new but for the economy
  • Maybe bartering

As the post suggests, this is about the economy but it’s also about the strength of the Craigslist brand and the fact that Craigslist continues to “work” for people.

And if this doesn’t illustrate to people the power and importance of “local” (offline), nothing probably will.


4 Responses to “Power of Local: Craigslist Top Search Term”

  1. Stever Says:


    I totally get how a down economy is driving more people to online classifieds, but outpacing myspace, facebook, ebay and youtube. That’s truly impressive. OF course that’s navigational queries, not raw traffic, but again, Wow.

  2. Duncan Says:

    You should check out CL market share in the classified sector via Hitwise, out of the top 100 sites in the US, CL local sites collectively hold around 98% share… now that’s amazing. Kijiji in this case are clearly a very poor second, maybe they should speed up their name change to eBay classifieds to see if this helps them !

  3. Stever Says:

    However, check the the same keywords in Google Trends, or Insights (switch to US only) and you see a slightly different story. CL only outdoes Ebay from that list of 5.


    Try some other popular website names like Yahoo and Google and they also outpace CL.

  4. AhmedF Says:

    Stever – sampling is different. I believe I read somewhere that Google users tended to be slightly more educated/younger – and thus likely a better fit for Facebook.

    Plus the data is for a specific day (a Saturday) – which changes internet behavior (people slacking off at work looking up Facebook, vs people wanting to buy sell/stuff on weekends looking up Craigslist).

    Numbers lie 🙂

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