Top 10 Social Networking Sites in the US and UK

Social networking sites are on the rise globally and allow users to communicate and share information.  Social networking sites are being used regularly by millions of people; and they keep people connected through a fast, free, simple, and an accessible way.

Interesting information from Marketingcharts.com in August 2009 shows that Facebook is the most popular social networking site in the US with 39.53% of market share of visit, followed by MySpace (23.65%), and YouTube (13.16%) at the third place.

According to a study released by comScore in July 2009 on UK social networking site usage by age of visitor, they found that 29.4 million people accessed at least one social networking site in the UK during the month of May in 2009. The average time spent per visitor was 4.6 hours, trailing only instant messaging at 8.6 hours.  Also, Facebook.com ranked as the most popular social networking site with 23.9 million visitors in May 2009, followed by Bebo.com (8.5 million visitors), Windows Live Profile (6.9 million visitors) and MySpace Sites (6.5 million visitors).  Facebook grew 57% over the previous twelve months.  However, the big winner in the social networking site has been Twitter which grew more than 3,000% in 12 months to about 2.7 million visitors in May 2009.

About 80% of the total UK online population visited a site in the category in May 2009. Penetration was highest amongst 25-34 year old users, with 89 percent visiting a site in the category during the month, followed by 86 percent of 15-24 year olds. Category penetration was somewhat lower among the older age groups, but remained relatively high, reaching two thirds of the total online population age 55 and older.  Furthermore, younger users were also more engaged than their older users, with 15-24 and 25-34 year olds averaging 5.4 hours per user per month compared with 3.7 hours per month among users age 55 and older.

According to the Nielsen report, Facebook is now the most visited social networking site in the world, visiting monthly by 3 in every 10 people online across the nine markets in which Nielsen tracks social networking use.  The popularity of Facebook also helps move up its ranking of worldwide unique visitors.  According to comScore in June 2009, Facebook is now the fourth largest site in the world, trailing only Google, Microsoft, and Yahoo sites.  The ranking of worldwide unique visitors as of June 2009 is as follow:

  1. Google Sites: 844 million
  2. Microsoft Sites: 691 million
  3. Yahoo! Sites: 581 million
  4. Facebook: 340 million
  5. Wikimedia Foundation sites: 303 million
  6. AOL: 280 million
  7. eBay: 233 million
  8. CBS Interactive: 186 million
  9. Amazon: 183 million
  10. Ask Network: 174 million

It is interesting that Facebook itself only officially acknowledges 300 million active registered users.  Perhaps, the difference is due to the fact that users do not have to be a registered user to visit some Facebook pages.  Furthermore, there are some interesting statistics provided by Facebook:

  • More than 300 million active users
  • 50% of our active users log on to Facebook in any given day
  • The fastest growing demographic is those 35 years old and older
  • Average user has 130 friends on the site
  • More than 6 billion minutes are spent on Facebook each day (worldwide)
  • More than 40 million status updates each day
  • More than 2 billion photos uploaded to the site each month
  • More than 14 million videos uploaded each month
  • More than 70 translations available on the site
  • About 70% of Facebook users are outside the United States
  • Every month, more than 70% of Facebook users engage with Platform applications
  • More than 350,000 active applications currently on Facebook Platform
  • There are more than 65 million active users currently accessing Facebook through their mobile devices.
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About Steve Yuen

I am a Professor Emeritus of Instructional Technology and Design at The University of Southern Mississippi in Hattiesburg, Mississippi, United States.
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4 Responses to Top 10 Social Networking Sites in the US and UK

  1. Pingback: Gary Hayes’ Social Media Count « Tech Learning

  2. Christine Mark says:

    Because I have become involved in using Facebook myself recently for personal activities, I find myself increasingly interested in how to integrate this technology into my classroom. As this post clearly points out, a lot of time is being spent on Facebook by our students and this is likely to increase rather than decrease. While previously I have been rather anti-SNS, I must admit there is a certain attractiveness to these sites, although admittedly I am more of a ‘lurker’ rather than a ‘participator’.

    What I find somewhat troubling, however, is the rather unprofessional image many of today’s student project because of the design and structure of their SNS account(s) and the poor judgment used in the content that is placed there. As technology teachers we have some many opportunities to use these spaces as teachable moments, showing our students how to create good designs, how to create inviting yet individual sites, how to be safe internet users, and how to fashion a positive personal image. Perhaps it is time to have more curricular activities which include SNS such as Facebook as learning activities.

    Indeed, recently I have been asked by students if I have a Facebook page as an instructor and whether there is a Facebook page for a specific class, which seems to be growing more common. It would be interesting to do some research to see if more instructors are using Facebook rather than more traditional applications such as web pages, wikis, blogs, etc. It had never occurred to me to use Facebook as a course delivery and housekeeping mechanism, but students seem to be interested in this. In fact, several students have commented that they can port their emails and IMs through the site, making it kind of a ‘one-stop shopping’ technology. I suppose this would save time for them rather than having to visit several technologies individually. Perhaps the time has come.

    Anyway, I enjoyed this post because the data seem to reinforce the concept that SNS are here to stay, and perhaps we as teachers need to be where the students live. I remember reading another post on the blog here that indicated that Italy had the highest number of SHS hours in the world. Clearly, this global application is here to stay for the foreseeable future.

  3. 鄭伊真 says:

    從文章中所提供的統計表可以發現,social network是一股正在興起的全球性的熱潮,各個social network則以facebook參與的人數最多,且年紀愈小的族群花費在social network上的時間愈多。

    social network讓人們透過一種快速、免費、簡單和易接近的方式保持聯結。對許多人而言,參與這些社群已經成為生活的一部份,這也進而改變了我們對於一些事物的看待方式。

    然而就我而言,我無法習慣social network上的社交模式,因為我不能從上面得到安慰的擁抱、支持的微笑,再怎麼樣的親密接觸總是隔著一個螢幕。此外,在這樣的發展下,會不會造成過度的依賴而使得人們一旦沒有social network就不知道如何與人真實的溝通?科技讓我們的生活更便利,但也別忘了經營心與心的距離。

  4. 鄭伊真 says:

    從文章中所提供的統計表可以發現,social network是一股正在興起的全球性的熱潮,各個social network則以facebook參與的人數最多,且年紀愈小的族群花費在social network上的時間愈多。

    social network讓人們透過一種快速、免費、簡單和易接近的方式保持聯結。對許多人而言,參與這些社群已經成為生活的一部份,這也進而改變了我們對於一些事物的看待方式。

    然而就我而言,我無法習慣social network上的社交模式,因為我不能從上面得到安慰的擁抱、支持的微笑,再怎麼樣的親密接觸總是隔著一個螢幕。此外,在這樣的發展下,會不會造成過度的依賴而使得人們一旦沒有social network就不知道如何與人真實的溝通?科技讓我們的生活更便利,但也別忘了經營心與心的距離。

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