The power of social networking is such that the number of worldwide users is expected to reach some 3.02 billion monthly active social media users by 2021, around a third of Earth’s entire population. In 2023, an estimated 800 million of these users are expected to be from China alone and approximately a 450 million from India.
Leading social networks usually boast a high number of user accounts or strong user engagement metrics. For example, Facebook is the first social network having surpassed the 1 billion monthly active user mark and as of the second quarter of 2019, has 2.41 billion MAU worldwide. The platform is also ranked first among the most popular social networks worldwide. Other leading social apps and networks include photo- and video sharing platform Instagram, which has over 1 billion monthly active users and most recently reported 500 million daily active users for its Stories feature. Messaging apps including WhatsApp, Facebook Messenger, and WeChat are also popular social channels for online users.
Despite the ubiquity of social networks market potential is still increasing, as not only user figures but also user engagement continues to grow. On average, global internet users spend some 136 minutes per day surfing social networks. This prompts worldwide brands and their marketers to use that time and screen space to promote various products and services via social media marketing or social advertising.
In recent years, social networking has demonstrated a clear shift towards mobile platforms. Smartphone and tablet apps as well as mobile web access have facilitated the constant presence of mobile-first or mobile-only platforms such as Twitter, Instagram, or Snapchat. In addition, these kinds of applications have heightened the profile of location-based services like Foursquare and enabled users to comfortably access visual blogging sites including Tumblr and Pinterest via tablet. As of 2018, 99.2 million online users in the United States accessed social networking sites exclusively via mobile devices.
The Statista Global Consumer Survey offers additional comprehensive information on social media usage in the United States, including data on frequency of social networking, popularity of selected social platforms among internet users as well as common activities performed on those platforms. With the option to display results broken down by desired target group, Statista’s Global Consumer Survey provides insights into the habits of social media and instant messaging users.