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Developers increasingly get advice from AI chatbots and GitHub CoPilot rather than Stack Overflow

While traffic to OpenAI’s ChatGPT has been growing exponentially, Stack Overflow has been experiencing a steady decline – losing some of its standings as the go-to source developers turn to for answers to coding challenges.

How Stack Overflow and GitHub compare with ChatGPT

Most websites suffer by comparison with ChatGPT these days, and this is not a fair comparison in the sense that Stack Overflow and GitHub are specialized services for developers. ChatGPT has gained mass market appeal, in addition to being useful to developers.

chart: traffic to Stack Overflow, ChatGPT and GitHub

GitHub is growing, and Stack Overflow is shrinking

On a year-over-year basis, traffic to Stack Overflow (stackoverflow.com) has been down by an average of 6% every month since January 2022 and was down 13.9% in March.

While Stack Overflow and GitHub are a lot closer to each other in size than they are to ChatGPT, GitHub is growing its traffic while Stack Overflow is shrinking. We can’t say how much of GitHub’s growth is related to its embrace (and Microsoft’s broader embrace) of OpenAI technologies, but the related buzz is probably helping.

chart: Stack Overflow is shrinking, GitHub is growing

CoPilot signups just tripled

GitHub provides many free services, but CoPilot is one of its paid features – and popular enough that free trial signups for the service tripled between February and March.

chart: increase in signups for GitHub CoPilot

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