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Social media usage in Spain - Statistics & Facts

Smoke signals, messenger pigeons, the telegraph, the telephone, the facsimile and many more. Way before the appearance of the internet, society was already striving to find ways to enhance social interaction. These pre-digital communication systems shaped social networks as we know them in modern times. With the arrival of the network of networks, social media started to play an essential role in today’s culture and influence our everyday life, insomuch that their global penetration rate stood at 49 percent as of January 2020.

Spain is no exception to this, with social network participation constantly increasing in the past few years, reaching almost 60 percent in 2019. Spain's tendency goes in the same direction as the rest of the world. Social media can be used for numerous purposes, such as watching videos, listening to music or getting inspiration from well-known influencers, but just like in the old days, users lean more towards communication, which ranked as the most frequent activity on social platforms in Spain as of 2019.

The popularity of social media was such that these platforms are used not only for actual social interaction, but also as a leverage for companies to promote their products. Recent data reveals that 95.8 percent of Spanish companies have social media presence to boost their business as of the first quarter of 2019. However, Spanish corporations are not the only ones making the most of the widespread fame of social media. The world has witnessed the emergence of a new type of public figure: the influencers. Many Spaniards follow these types of popular accounts to get inspiration and ideas for travel, fashion or food, with Facebook being Spain’s platform of choice to follow influencers in 2019.

Facebook, the world’s most popular social network has about 22 million active users in Spain, as of 2019. That year was, however, the first under review in which Facebook saw a decrease in its number of users, whereas the video and photo social platform Instagram gained popularity and doubled its users over the last few years. In this regard, it can be observed how Instagram app download figures surpassed those of Facebook on Google Play in 2020, the former with 554.2 thousand downloads and the latter with 250.5 thousand downloads as of January 2020.

Considering how much digital consumer behavior changes during the information age, it is worth noting the shift in social media use with the rise of mobile devices. The latest studies show that some of these communication technologies, such as WhatsApp or Instagram, are accessed by means of mobile devices much more frequently than through computers in Spain, arguably due to the choice of much more mobile-friendly designs over a conventional computer interface.

We can only wonder today how our civilization’s future social interactions will be handled. All we know for now by looking at the current statistics is that the number of memebers on social networks is only rising and expected to reach over 3 billion users by 2021. That is 40 percent of the global population - all peoples, cultures and languages interconnected on a very intricate and wide series of social networks.

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Social media usage in Spain

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