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2020 Facts & Figures // Social Media Statistics


This is it. The ultimate list of Social Media Statistics that you need to know in 2020.

We’ve scoured the web and compiled everything we could find into one complete record, full of sources.

From the global reports such as the Digital Report, to more localised Australian sources such as the Yellow Report, we regularly update this page with the latest news we can find.

Here we go, all the general social media stats you need to know right now…

  • Increased usage has been most pronounced across younger age groups, but a third of internet users aged 45 to 64 also told GlobalWebIndex that they’re spending more time using social media as a result of coronavirus lockdowns.
  • Women are more likely to have increased their social media activities compared to men, with almost two-thirds of women aged 16 to 24 saying they’re spending more time using social media in recent weeks.
  • Despite already spending more time on social media than any other country, the Philippines has seen the greatest number of people reporting an increase in the amount of time they’re spending on social platforms.
  • In Italy – one of the first Western countries to experience a complete lockdown – the number of group calls on Facebook Messenger involving three or more users increased by more than 1,000 percent in March alone, while people across the country have also increased the time they spend using Facebook-owned apps by more than 70 percent since the lockdown began.
  • Despite lingering concerns about privacy, teleconferencing service Zoom has been a clear winner, with the company revealing that it’s had as many as 200 million daily active users in recent weeks – 20 times more than pre-pandemic levels.
  • GlobalWebIndex finds that tutorials and how-to videos are amongst the top kinds of content that consumers want more of during the COVID-19 crisis, and these may represent a particularly compelling opportunity for B2B brands.
  • “Coronavirus” was the third most frequently entered search query across the whole of Q1, but the query topped the rankings in March, generating more than twice as many searches as the perennial top term, “Google.”
  • 65% of people surveyed said how brands respond to the pandemic will have a 'huge impact' on their likelihood to buy that brand in the future.

  • 45% of consumers say they’re more likely to research a product or service when an employee posts about it, compared to only 32% saying they’ll do so if a celebrity posts about it.
  • 50% of consumers say they follow brands on social media to learn about new products or services, while 48% say they follow to be entertained.
  • 51% of consumers will unfollow a brand if the content shared is irrelevant. Meanwhile 78% will unfollow if they see too many ads or promotional posts from the brand.
  • 23% of Australians watch video content on a T.V by casting it from a mobile phone.
  • 23% of Australians scan QR codes.
  • 22% of Australians use an image search tool.
  • Businesses continue to advertise on social media with 37% of
    the surveyed SMBs saying that they have paid for advertising.
    Advertising on social media is more common among mediumsized businesses than in small businesses (44% vs 34%) and
    in metro areas as opposed to rural (41% vs 31%).
  • 25% of Australians use their mobile phone as a ticket or boarding pass.
  • 45% of Australians transfer money to friends or family with a mobile app.
  • When it comes to online transactions, 74% of women and 77% of men make purchases.

  • Businesses continue to advertise on social media with 37% of the surveyed SMBs saying that they have paid for advertising.
  • Advertising on social media is more common among medium sized businesses than in small businesses (44% vs 34%) and in metro areas as opposed to rural (41% vs 31%).
  • The wholesale industry leads the pack as being most likely to advertise on social media (54%), meanwhile cultural and recreational services are the least likely to (26%).
  • Among the SMBs who have paid to advertise on social media platforms, Facebook (83%) is the platform of choice, with Instagram (22%), LinkedIn (16%) and Twitter (12%) trailing behind. Regardless of the channel SMBs have used for advertising, around 80% say their advertising was effective.

The figures below are based on monthly active users, active user accounts, advertising audiences and unique monthly visitors.

  1. Facebook - 2.4 billion
  2. YouTube - 2 billion
  3. WhatsApp  - 1.6 billion
  4. Facebook Messenger - 1.3 billion
  5. Weixin/WeChat - 1.1 billion
  6. Instagram - 1 billion
  7. Douyin/Tik Tok - 800 million
  8. QQ - 730 million
  9. Qzone - 517 million
  10. Sina Weibo - 497 million
  11. Reddit - 430 million
  12. Snapchat - 382 million
  13. Twitter - 340 million
  14. Pinterest - 322 million

Below is the number of internet users in each region compared against population.

  • Northern Europe - 95%
  • Western Europe - 92%
  • Northern America - 88%
  • Southern Europe - 83%
  • Eastern Europe - 78%
  • Western Asia - 72%
  • Southern America - 72%
  • Oceania - 70%
  • South Eastern Asia - 66%
  • Central America - 66%
  • Eastern Asia - 63%
  • Caribbean - 60%
  • Southern Africa - 60%
  • Central Asia - 54%
  • Northern Africa - 53%
  • South Eastern Asia - 48%
  • Western Africa - 36%
  • Eastern Africa - 23%
  • Middle Africa - 22%

Below is the number of social media users in each region compared against the population.

  • Eastern Asia - 71%
  • Northern America - 69%
  • Northern Europe - 67%
  • Southern America - 67%
  • Central America - 64%
  • South Eastern Asia - 61%
  • Southern Europe - 59%
  • Oceania - 57%
  • Western Asia - 56%
  • Western Europe - 54%
  • Caribbean - 51%
  • Eastern Europe - 49%
  • Northern Africa - 39%
  • Southern Africa - 36%
  • Southern Asia - 27%
  • Central Asia - 22%
  • Western Africa - 13%
  • Eastern Africa - 8%
  • Middle Africa - 6%

Below is the average times internet users aged between 16 - 64 spend on different media devices.

  • Using the internet - 6 hrs 43 mins
  • Using social media - 2 hrs 23 mins
  • Watching T.V - 3 hrs 18 mins
  • Listening to music streaming services - 1 hr 26 mins
  • Using a games console - 1 hr 10 mins
  • On average, global internet users spend some 136 minutes per day surfing social networks.

Below is a list of top mobile apps by average monthly users throughout 2019:

  1. WhatsApp Messenger
  2. Facebook
  3. Facebook Messenger
  4. We Chat
  5. Instagram
  6. Tik Tok
  7. Aliplay
  8. QQ
  9. Taobao
  10. Baidu

Internet users aged 16 - 64.

  • Social networking apps - 86%
  • Messenger apps - 81%
  • Map apps - 74%
  • Entertainment or video apps - 67%
  • Shopping apps - 57%
  • Banking apps - 47%
  • Music apps - 46%
  • Games - 40%
  • Health and fitness apps - 26%
  • Dating and friendship apps - 8.5%

Most Popular Australian Apps

The information below is based on monthly active users during 2019.

  1. Facebook Messenger
  2. Facebook
  3. Instagram
  4. WhatsApp Messenger
  5. Spotify
  6. Snapchat
  7. Netflix
  8. Ebay
  9. Commbank
  10. Microsoft Outlook

Most Downloaded Australian Apps

The information below is based on number of downloads during 2019.

  1. Facebook Messenger
  2. Netflix
  3. Spotify
  4. Instagram
  5. Tik Tok
  6. WhatsApp Messenger
  7. Facebook
  8. Uber Eats
  9. Snapchat
  10. Stan

Australian Consumer Spend on Mobile Apps

Below is the ranking of mobile apps by consumer spend.

  1. Tinder
  2. Netflix
  3. YouTube
  4. Bumble
  5. Optus sports
  6. Kayo sports
  7. Bigo Live
  8. LinkedIn
  9. YouTube music
  10. Google One

  • One in five SMBs (21%) do not have a strategy to drive traffic to their social media channels.
  • Small businesses are less likely than medium businesses to have a social media strategy (26% vs 13%). Similarly, businesses in regional areas are less likely to have a strategy in place than businesses in metro areas (28% vs 17%).
  • Thirty-four per cent of businesses in the cultural and recreational industry do not have a social media strategy.
  • The most prominent way for SMBs to drive traffic to their social media channels is through links on their business website (50%)
  • .Liking, following or subscribing to other businesses or users on social media is another relatively popular method (26%).
  • Medium businesses are more likely to advertise on traditional media (21%) or on other websites (19%) than small businesses.
  • Leading reasons why Australian SMBs use social media are to promote the business (33%), create awareness and exposure (28%) and generate sales (17%).
  • %Sixty-three per cent of Australian SMBs use social media channels to engage in two-way communication with customers and contacts. This incidence is at a majority level across the SMB base.
  • Thirty-seven per cent of Australian SMBs have paid to advertise on a social media channel. This is higher for medium than small businesses (44% vs 34%) and in metro areas (41% vs 31%).
  • The average estimated annual expenditure by Australian SMBs on social media advertising is just over $3,000. Together with their average estimated expenditure on content and strategic management services (almost $2,300 on each), Australian SMBs spend a total of almost $7,600 on their social media each year. As a percentage of their marketing budget (where one exists) this amount represents 12% on average.
  • Among the Australian SMBs who have advertised on social media, Facebook (83%) has been used much more than others such as Instagram (22%), LinkedIn (16%) or Twitter (12%). Regardless of the social media channel used for advertising, around 80% of Australian SMBs say it was effective.
  • For the majority of SMBs, their social media presence is made up of written content, photos, images and videos. This remains consistent across small to medium businesses and industries and locations.
  • Almost two thirds of SMBs (63%) use social media channels to engage in a two-way conversation with customers and contacts. SMBs who don’t use it say it’s because they don’t see any need or benefit.
  • Marketing continues to top the list of reasons given by SMBs to use social media. The marketing-related reasons given by SMBs included promoting the business (33%), creating awareness and exposure (28%), and generating sales (17%). Social media is also used by SMBs as a way to connect and interact with their customer and consumer base (19%).
  • Only 5% of SMBs admit to paying social influencers to promote their business. Of those who did pay to use social influencers, 61% say the tactic was successful.
  • Aussie SMBs are a generous bunch, with 37% saying they offer incentives to current and potential customers via social media. This practice is most common in the wholesale (56%), hospitality (55%) and retail (54%) industries. Among the incentives offered, the most popular types are discounts (67%) and giveaways (45%).
  • One in four SMBs (25%) do not allocate any of their marketing budget to social media costs.
  • By industry, the average budget allocation for social spend ranges from 10% in building and construction to 15% in retail, finance and insurance.
  • 79% of SMBs manage their social accounts internally, rather than asking someone else to do it.
  • When SMBs seek social media support it’s most likely to come from digital agencies (32%), freelancers (26%) or specialist social media agencies (19%).
  • On average, SMBs expect their social media spend will increase sales by 12%

Below is the percentage of Australian internet users between 16 - 64 who perform the following actions each month.

  • Searched online for a product or service to purchase - 84%
  • Visited an online retail store - 76%
  • Purchased any type of product - 70%
  • Made a purchase by either a laptop or desktop - 47%
  • Made a purchase by a mobile phone - 33%

Below is the total spent by Australians on different E commerce categories.

  • Travel and accommodation - $19.9 billion
  • Fashion and beauty - $6.93 billion
  • Electronics and physical media - $3.86 billion
  • Toys/DIY/hobbies - $3.84 billion
  • Food and personal care - $3.02 billion
  • Furniture and appliances - $3.05 billion
  • Video games - $435 million
  • Digital music - $327 million

How internet users in Australia aged 16 - 24 claim how they are finding out about new brands.

  1. Search engines - 42%
  2. TV ads - 42%
  3. Word-of-mouth - 38%
  4. Social media ads - 26%
  5. In-store displays - 25%
  6. Product brochures - 24%
  7. Brand or product websites - 24%
  8. Ads on websites - 22%
  9. TV shows or films - 22%
  10. Direct mail or email - 18%

Feel the need for more statistics?

Looking for some platform specific stats? We got you.

Here are some of our previous general social media stat posts:

2020 Facts & Figures // Social Media Statistics

5 Comments

  1. BDSMXP · April 25, 2020 Reply

    I see there is only 8.5% population using dating apps, including the dating websites? However, seeking is the most popular sugar daddy/baby site in Australia, especially in the worldwide. So my question is why there are only little people are using dating apps?

  2. Martijn · July 8, 2020 Reply

    51% of consumers will unfollow a brand if the content shared is irrelevant.
    Meanwhile 78% will unfollow if they see too many ads or promotional posts from the brand.

    The first statement is fine and matches the data from Sprout.
    The second one is bad math. You can’t just add up 2 percentages from the same research.

    Too many ads from that brand: 43%
    Too many promotional posts: 35%

  3. Charlie · August 11, 2020 Reply

    Please Fact-Check your ‘General Social Media Stats’, how can Australian users have increased by “265 million users” in one year when Australia only has a population of 25 million? I’m sure you meant to say “265 thousand”. Likewise with the ‘735 million’ stat that follows.

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