Everyone has an opinion about the social media giant that has changed the way we communicate and perceive networking. Designed to connect Harvard students, Facebook quickly expanded to other campuses, reaching its first million users in 2004, the same year it was launched. A year later, it went international and became the most popular social network worldwide. So, how many users does Facebook have anymore? Read on to find out and learn more about some of the most important milestones in the social network’s history.
When we say “a social media giant,” we are not joking, and we have all the relevant data about the Facebook population to prove it. 17 years after its launch, Facebook’s reach has spread like wildfire. We’ll provide the answers to FAQs, so keep on reading.
The latest report as of January 2021 states there are a whopping 2.8 billion active Facebook users. The number of Facebook users by year shows the milestone of 1 billion was reached in 2012, and user growth has continued since. Facebook was the first social network with that many users. Relevant Facebook statistics further show that in 2017 there were already 2 billion monthly active users. As of January 2021, 28.5% of the world population uses Facebook.
The company defines its criteria for the category of Facebook DAU as logged-in users who access the website, mobile app, or the Facebook Messenger app (if they also have a Facebook profile). The latest data shows the Facebook DAU count stands at over 1.8 billion, which means 66% of registered Facebook monthly users log in daily.
An interesting detail in the report is that the ratio of 66% DAU vs. MAU has stagnated since 2017, the only exception being March 2020 with a 1% increase, most likely because of the lockdowns. Overall, worldwide y-o-y growth in DAU was 11%.
(Facebook Annual Report 2020)
The company has a policy that people can’t have more than one personal account and is constantly trying to track and remove profiles that are not authentic. In 2020, Facebook reported that out of 2.7 billion MAU, 137 million were fake accounts or 5%. The social network takes proactive steps on a daily basis. Overall, the latest data points to 16% of accounts being either duplicates or fake accounts. That means the remaining 84% are actually active users.
(The New York Times, Statista)
Quarterly reports show the growth of the number of Facebook users, and in the last three months of 2020, there were 57 million new members. The number translates to an increase of 2.2% of the total Facebook monthly active users.
(Facebook Annual Report 2020)
The analysis of the Facebook user base by gender shows that the platform is more popular with male users, accounting for 56% of the total number of Facebook users. Let’s see how this is distributed across different age groups. The biggest gap of 6% is for the 25-34 age group, where we have 18.8% of the total for men and 12.8% for women. It follows for 18-24 with 14.2% and 9.6% of men vs. women.
The only category where there are more female users is 55+, where we have 3.3% vs. 3.1% (55-64) and 2.6% vs.2.3% (65+) of women vs. men.
While Instagram's user base consists mainly of young adults, Facebook prevails among older demographics. It’s the most popular among male users aged 25-34, who make 18.8% of the total number of Facebook users. There are 16.9% of users aged 35-44, 10.5% aged 45-54, 6.4% aged 55-64, and 4.9% over 65 years old.
Teenagers are avid Instagram and Snapchat users, and their interest in Facebook is slowly declining. Back in 2012, Facebook was the most popular network for 42% of teenagers, with that number dropping to only 2% in late 2020.
When we look at the data from Facebook, the number of users in the age range 13-17 accounts for only 5.9%. 2.6% are teenage girls, while teenage boys make 3.3% of the total number.
As live videos are increasingly popular thanks to their reach and engagement capabilities, more and more people are using the live streaming platform on Facebook. In the year of social distancing and isolation, streaming and live videos were never more prevalent. Besides the general audience, organizations and celebrities are leveraging the power of live streaming. Facebook Live videos are 3 times more engaging as viewers can ask questions, leave comments, and join the real-time conversation. Another fun fact is that users are commenting 10 times more than on traditional videos.
You might think that Facebook Stories aren’t as popular as their counterpart on Instagram, but they are last reported to have over 500 million daily users. The company’s CEO and other experts believe Stories are the future of social media, mainly because they are immersive.
For now, we can only say the number of active Facebook users watching Stories is above half a billion and is going to continue to increase in the future. 67% of marketers are posting Stories regularly, and 44% of consumers say they watch Stories. Facebook videos can boost conversion rates by 20-30% and increase engagement levels. If you’re employing this strategy, just make sure your videos are mobile-friendly, as those are 27% more likely to drive brand lift.
(Social Media Today, Adquadrant, Facebook)
The latest data shows there are over 223 million Facebook active users in the US alone. That’s 3.17 million more users compared to 2019. In its annual report, the company reveals that the Facebook MAU number is 258 million in the US and Canada as of 2021. 76% or 195 million people are also daily Facebook users.
(Statista, Facebook Annual Report 2020)
When we examine the current number of Facebook users in the US and how they are distributed across the states, California takes the top spot with over 2.5 million. The state of New York is quite close by the Facebook user numbers, with only 0.3 million less. Texas is the third, having over 1.5 million users. Florida and Illinois, both with over 1.4 million, complete the top 5 list by the states.
India is the country with the largest Facebook user count, and as the latest data shows, there are now over 320 million users. The yearly growth is 3.2%. When we compare the number with India’s overall population, the platform’s penetration rate was at 25% in 2020. It is expected to increase by at least 2% yearly.
When it comes to the social media mobile market there, Facebook is the leading platform, with the last reported percentage being 87% in 2020. This market favorites another company’s product, WhatsApp, which has 459 million India-based users. That’s almost one-quarter of the total number of its users.
(The Digital 2021 Global Overview Report, Statista, India Today)
Facebook is one of the most popular platforms in Europe, and as of January 2021, there are 419 million monthly active users. Europe is defined as a geographical region for the purpose of the report, meaning, users from Russia and Turkey are included in the count. 74%, as the company reports, or 308 million are logging in daily. A y-o-y growth is stunning 25 million new users on the platform. In the last quarter of 2020 alone, there were 6 million new users reported.
(Facebook Annual Report 2020, Statista)
English is the most popular language, and as the latest report shows, 1.1 billion users choose it to be default and primary. Spanish ranks second and Hindi comes in third. Other commonly used languages in the top 10 list are Arabic, Indonesian, Portuguese, French, Filipino, Vietnamese, and Bengali.
(The Digital 2021 Global Overview Report)
Even though the engagement rates are higher on Instagram, Facebook is still a dominating channel for online marketing professionals. The latest data suggests almost all B2C marketers, or 96%, are using it as part of their marketing strategy. Consumers expect your presence on the platform, and thus is a must. Your company can lose a valuable and broad audience if you don’t have a business page, as right after Google, people will search for a brand on Facebook.
Instagram is also rated high for B2C marketers, with 82% using the platform. Only 53% use Twitter and YouTube. LinkedIn is used by half of the B2C marketers, which makes sense as it’s a professional network, so more in the focus of B2B marketers. Pinterest is used rarely, with only 28%. Snapchat and TikTok rank at the bottom because only 6% and 5% of marketers include them in their social strategy.
Social media as a channel isn’t relevant only for B2C communication for a while. The latest data shows a whopping 91% of social media marketing experts use Facebook as one of the most important platforms for promoting their products or services. Even though LinkedIn is the principal source of leads and arguably the most important medium in B2B communication, it’s used by 79%.
Data from January 2021 is in sync with some general trends and technological advancements that make smartphones our primary devices. Life is on the go, and mobile apps are more convenient, helping us kill time while waiting in a line, traveling to work, or when we’re all cozy in bed. The report shows a whopping 81% of Facebook users only access it via their mobile phones. 17.3% say they use both their computers and mobiles, while only 1.7% report using only their desktop or laptop devices.
Even among the ones who occasionally use pcs or tablets, overall, 98.3% said they had accessed the platform via any kind of mobile device. 80.7% said it was an Android device, 14.7% Apple, while 4.6% report using other operating systems.
(Statista, The Digital 2021 Global Overview Report)
The latest research examined Americans’ usage and habits and the way they consume content on social media. Facebook turned out to be the news source for one-third of the US population. 36% out of the total US population or 54% of Facebook users say they regularly get news on the platform. The only one ranking higher is Twitter, with 59% of users regularly getting information there.
As a news source, it’s more popular with the female audience, 63% vs. 35% of men who treat it in the same way. As for age groups, 41% of Facebook users who treat it as a regular news source are aged 30-49.
(Journalism — Pew Research Center)
With 4.66 billion people using the World Wide Web, over 60% choose to connect via Facebook, so there is no doubt of its importance in the future. There are just too many reasons this is the most popular social network worldwide. The more you learn about Facebook users’ habits and expectations, the more you can gain from marketing on the platform. Good luck!