Politics, careers and real estate dominated the search charts for US web users during January, according to figures from comScore.
The research firm's monthly analysis of US consumer activity at top online properties showed that the official start of the US tax season sent Americans online in droves.
The 'tax' category rose 202 per cent to more than 23 million visitors, making it the top-gaining category in January.
The IRS.gov website led with 12.5 million visitors (up 181 per cent), followed by TaxACT with 5.8 million visitors (up more than 1,000 per cent) and H&R Block with 5.3 million visitors (up 312 per cent).
Politics also jumped as the Presidential primaries kicked off, gaining 65 per cent to 13.8 million visitors as Americans went online for news and opinions and to visit candidates' websites.
The 'career services and development' category experienced a 31 per cent gain for the month as many Americans re-evaluated their career situations with the advent of the new year.
"The new year is a time for Americans to reflect on the past year and plan for the coming year, whether searching for a new job, a new residence, or preparing for the tax season," said Jack Flanagan, executive vice president at comScore Media Metrix.
"There was also a huge surge in activity at political content sites as the Democratic and Republican Presidential primaries kicked off with the Iowa caucuses in early January."
Concerns over a shaky property market, along with those resolving to move in 2008, precipitated a 28 per cent gain to 42 million visitors to the 'real estate' category in January.
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