Although networking is a proven way to go about getting a job, if you're new to the market and haven't yet established a decent list of contacts, you may be better off focusing on searching for work online. In fact, according to a 2015 Pew Research Center report, over the past two previous years, 79% of Americans seeking employment used job-hunting sites as part of their search -- and that's twice as much as recruiters or job fairs.

Of course, not all job sites are created equal. Some are far more user-friendly than others, and some give you access to a wider range of opportunities and information. To maximize the time you spend looking for work online, here are a few job-hunting sites you'll want to check out.

Online job search

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1. LinkedIn

Many folks think of LinkedIn as just a networking site, but in reality, it's a solid resource for those seeking employment. In fact, as of April 2017, LinkedIn had more than 10 million active job posts. Best of all, many companies set up their own profiles on LinkedIn, so not only can you search for job openings, but you can also learn more about those businesses and the opportunities they offer. As an added bonus, LinkedIn lets you search for connections at the companies you're following, so if you see a job listing that piques your interest, and you know someone at that company, you may have an easier time getting your foot in the door.

2. Indeed

Indeed is the biggest job search site on the Web, largely because it gathers job listings from countless outside sites and consolidates everything into one neat little search engine. You can search for jobs by title or company, find salary information for your prospective role, read company reviews, upload a resume that lets prospective employers find you, and much more. The site's layout is also extremely uncluttered, which makes it easy to browse.

3. Glassdoor

Though Glassdoor has its fair share of job listings, what really sets it apart is its vast library of salary data and company reviews. On Glassdoor, workers rate their benefits, their CEO, and their employer as a whole. They can even anonymously share their salaries so that job hunters know what to expect. Glassdoor has unofficially been dubbed the Yelp of job searching, because it offers a large number of detailed reviews to help you determine whether a company is the right place for you.

4. CareerBuilder

CareerBuilder has been around forever, and while its model isn't particularly unique, it has long been a solid resource for job seekers. CareerBuilder lets you search for work by title, skill set, or company, and while many older job sites can say the same, the fact that its resource center is loaded with fresh content gives it a leg up over the competition.

5. Snagajob

Not everyone in search of a job is looking for full-time work. While there are numerous sites geared toward freelance opportunities, Snagajob is among the best resources for part-time and hourly gigs. It's estimated that 44 million Americans currently work some sort of side hustle on top of their regular jobs. Whether you're looking for a way to supplement your income or bring in some cash while you're pursuing a degree, it pays to explore your options and see what's out there.

It's easy enough to sink hours into your online job search each week, so knowing which sites to target first can help you make the most of your time. Of course, this isn't to say that you shouldn't reach out to contacts and attempt to work some networking magic. But in the absence of a promising lead, the above sites can certainly help point you in the right direction.

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