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Facts & Figures // Social Media Statistics for 2021

This is it. The ultimate list of Social Media Statistics that you need to know for 2021.

With so many changes happening in the world of social media, it can be difficult to keep up. That’s why it’s important to keep an eye on all the numbers and social media statistics that (actually) matter.

Luckily, for you, we’ve scoured the web and compiled all the social media statistics you need to know for 2021 into one complete record, full of sources.

So, close all those extra tabs and hit that bookmark button. All the social media facts, statistics, demographics, and more are right here!

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…

  • In what will be a surprise to no one, screen time is on the rise, with the typical internet user now spending almost 7 hours per day on connected devices.
  • We’re spending more time watching television, but our behaviours are changing - the world’s internet users now spend an average of 1 and a half hours per day on streaming services such as Netflix, almost equal to the 2 hours per day on broadcast and cable.
  • Between July and September, more than 180 million more people used social media compared to the previous three months - double the growth rate reported back in January.
  • Social media accounts for a third of our screen time - more than 10 billion hours per day worldwide (more than a million years of human existence!)
  • 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.
  • 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.
  • Despite lingering concerns about privacy, teleconferencing service Zoom was a clear winner, with the company revealing that it now has as many as 200 million daily active users – 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.” It’s still up there in Q3, coming in as the eleventh most frequently entered search query.
  • 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.
  • In Australia, eCommerce has been booming since late March. The financial year (FY20) saw 35.4% YOY growth in online purchases.
  • As Victoria moved into restrictions in July, online purchases rebounded even higher than the April peaks. A third of online purchases made in July were made in Victoria. In the six weeks prior to 22 August 2020, Victoria recorded the highest number of online purchases in its history.
  • The category which saw the highest growth was Home & Garden (82%), followed by Food & Liquor (76%) and Health & Beauty (71%).
  • A third of Australian shoppers report that they are purchasing less from overseas. 57% say it’s because they want to support Australian businesses and the Australian economy more.

Why do consumers follow brands?

Why do consumers unfollow brands?

What about Australian consumers?

  • 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%).
  • Leading reasons why Australian SMBs use social media are to promote the business (33%), create awareness and exposure (28%), connect and interact with their consumer base (19%) 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.
  • 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.

Social Media Budgets and Advertising 

 

  • Medium businesses are more likely to advertise on traditional media (21%) or on other websites (19%) than small businesses.
  • 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%).
  • 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.
  • 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%).
  • 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.

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

  1. Facebook - 2.7 billion
  2. YouTube - 2 billion
  3. WhatsApp  - 2 billion
  4. Facebook Messenger - 1.3 billion
  5. Weixin/WeChat - 1.2 billion
  6. Instagram - 1.15 billion
  7. TikTok - 689 million
  8. QQ - 648 million
  9. Douyin - 600 million
  10. Sina Weibo - 523 million
  11.  Qzone - 517 million
  12. Snapchat - 433 million
  13. Reddit - 430 million
  14. Kuaishou - 430 million
  15. Pinterest - 416 million
  16. Telegram - 400 million
  17. Twitter - 353 million
  18. Quora - 300 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%
  • Southern 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 - 63%
  • 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 are the top ten countries globally for mobile internet connection speed.

  1. South Korea
  2. China
  3. United Arab Emirates
  4. Qatar
  5. Netherlands
  6. Norway
  7. Saudi Arabia
  8. Canada
  9. Bulgaria
  10. Australia

Below are the top ten countries globally for fixed internet connection speed.

  1. Singapore
  2. Hong Kong
  3. Romania
  4. Switzerland
  5. Thailand
  6. France
  7. Denmark
  8. Monaco
  9. Hungary
  10. United States

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

  • Using the internet - 6 hrs 55 mins
  • Using social media - 2 hrs 29 mins
  • Watching TV - 3 hrs 29 mins
  • Listening to music streaming services - 1 hr 34 mins
  • Using a games console - 1 hr 14 mins

Below is a list of the top mobile apps globally by average monthly active users, excluding China:

  1. Facebook
  2. WhatsApp Messenger
  3. Facebook Messenger
  4. Instagram
  5. Amazon
  6. Twitter
  7. Netflix
  8. Spotify 
  9. Tik Tok
  10. Telegram

Below is a list of the top mobile apps globally by total downloads between July and September 2020:

  1. TikTok
  2. Facebook
  3. WhatsApp
  4. Zoom Cloud Meetings
  5. Google Meet
  6. Instagram
  7. Facebook Messenger
  8. Snack Video
  9. Telegram
  10. Snapchat

Internet users aged 16 - 64 who report using the below categories each month.

  • 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 sport
  6. Kayo sport
  7. Bigo Live
  8. LinkedIn
  9. YouTube music
  10. Google One

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 online - 70%
  • Made an online purchase by either a laptop or desktop - 47%
  • Made an online 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 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:

Facts & Figures // Social Media Statistics for 2021