Not All Work–From–Home Stocks Are Created Equal

May 01, 2022

At LikeFolio, we talk a lot about stickiness.

Not the gum–on–your–shoe kind of sticky.

We’re listening for indications that a change in consumer behavior has staying power — the new activity or commitment will be sustained.

This is more important than ever right now because the pandemic forced onto consumers many behavior changes that are beginning to unwind (don’t have stickiness).

We’re traveling again. We’re shopping in stores. We’re skipping the DoorDash and grabbing dinner out with friends!

Just look at work–from–home stocks over the last six months.

They are getting pummeled.

Upwork Inc. (UPWK), Zoom Video Communications Inc. (ZM), Fiverr International Ltd. (FVRR), and DocuSign Inc. (DOCU) have all shed more than –50% in value in the last six months.

But should the investing world treat all of these stocks the same?

This is where LikeFolio comes in.

We’re listening to consumers in real time, and we know which trends (and companies) are exhibiting signs of stickiness.

And in this case, two companies on the chart above are showing signs of continued growth but are being thrown out with the bathwater.

Check out this Outlier Grid, highlighting mention volume growth and consumer happiness for each of the work–from–home darlings:

Zoom and DocuSign are struggling. Consumer buzz is dying down, and happiness is low.

But consumer mentions for Fiverr and Upwork are booming, both increasing by more than +45% YoY.

AND both FVRR and UPWK boast consumer happiness levels +10 points higher versus remote-work peers.

What’s happening?

It turns out the pandemic sparked employees and employers to realize that remote work is a viable long–term option.

Mentions from consumers working remotely are on the rise again and remain more than +235% higher vs. pre–pandemic levels.

More importantly, this acceptance of a remote team is helping to spark an uptick in the use of freelance workers.

LikeFolio data shows that mentions from consumers working as a freelancer AND hiring freelance talent have risen by double digits over the last year.

This makes sense.

Freelancers give businesses more flexibility to support highly targeted projects with the right talent, for the right amount of time. And now, remote teams are standard practice.

This certainly helped fuel Upwork’s flames when it reported earnings earlier this week, sending shares as much as +16% higher on Thursday.

The key: Upwork reported more new users AND more spend per client. The gross sales volume (GSV) per active client increased +18% YoY.

This bodes well for FVRR, which is set to report earnings in a couple of weeks (May 11).

Fiverr operates in a similar freelance capacity as Upwork, and actually has higher levels of consumer happiness.

Meanwhile, mentions of using Fiverr as a worker or employer are powering through all–time highs.

This kind of lead time gives investors an enormous edge ahead of the company’s next report in a few weeks.

LikeFolio’s unique consumer insights tell us Fiverr is a winner.

Just like they told us Upwork was a winner, well ahead of the company’s Wall Street surprise.

The good news is, we’re scanning for winners like this every day so members can stay a step ahead.

Stickiness can be a good thing.

Megan Brantley
Head of Research, LikeFolio