Where The Poor Go Online


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By Jay Kirell

Today I was just fumbling around online, killing time before football starts and, since it’s approaching the two-month mark since I started this blog, I thought I would check out my site traffic rankings to see how I was doing.

I went to Alexa.com, where you can get a somewhat decent idea of where a website ranks.  For instance, Facebook is No. 2, Youtube is No. 3, Twitter is No. 8, ect.

This blog is apparently No. 129,000-something. Interesting to me, if nobody else.

So it got me wondering, since being this blog’s author and somewhat poor and not someone who visits websites that cater to the ultra-rich, what websites do the poor visit and how do those sites rank?

And what websites are today’s poor most likely to visit?

Unemployment websites and job sites.

First I looked at monster.com – which ended up being the No. 142-ranked site.  Out of any website anyone could visit online, that one cracks the top 150.

But people could visit a job site while they’re still employed and thinking about switching careers.

I needed to go poorer.  I needed to go to websites people would have no option to go to unless they were too down to go anywhere else.  People who needed to turn to government to help them.

State Unemployment websites.

So with the toolbar in my browser window, I went searching.

Let’s start with the three largest states…

California:  No. 159  — right above Gawker and Citibank’s website.

New York:  No. 339 — right above Hotels.com and ToysRUs.com.

Texas:  No. 463 — right above The Onion.

Wow, that’s three unemployment websites in the Top-500 in the United States.

By the way, for reference, Gucci.com is No. 8,713 – or about 5,000 spots below the State of Illinois’ unemployment webpage. (3286)

GQ.com is No. 1,393 or about 500 spots below New Jersey’s unemployment site (889).

Now, I know these are technically the results for all website traffic on these government links, but in a down economy, with more people on food stamps and unemployment basically holding steady, I find it hard to believe an overwhelming majority of Americans are naturally visiting California’s government website because they’re curious about to tourism or what the state bird is.

What this tells me is there’s a ton of Americans making more visits to websites that can help them put food on the table than there are picking out a new table.

And that’s something worth chewing on.

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