There is a lot of (digital) ink spilt discussing the fortunes of Mark Zuckerberg’s ubiquitous social network. Many commenters are quick to proclaim the ‘death of Facebook’ at the first sight of a new social media trend or a buzzworthy new network (remember Ello?). But the reality is that Facebook is, and will remain for some time, the king of the social media industry. Here’s four reasons why:
8 in 10 internet users are accessing Facebook each month
Outside of China, the vast majority of internet users are engaging with Facebook in some way each month. And this is situation that is hardly changing as time goes by. Currently, it’s around 80 percent of online adults who use Facebook monthly – a figure that the service has steadfastly maintained over the past few years.
So Zuckerberg’s platform may not be growing its influence in terms of percentages but with millions of new internet users coming online each year, it’s now a case that as the internet population grows, so does Facebook. Key here will be new users in fast-growth markets. It’s no surprise, then, that Facebook has invested so much time developing Facebook Lite – a mobile-friendly version of the service designed for those who need to use it in relatively affordable, data-light ways.
Over 80 percent have an account on a Facebook-owned platform
Even if a social networker decides to break from Facebook, chances are they will still be engaging with at least one platform owned by Zuckerberg & Co. Instagram has been one of the great success stories of the past few years – GWI’s data shows that it has almost doubled in size in the last two years. And, outside of a few Asian markets, Facebook Messenger and WhatsApp have effectively divided the mobile messaging market between them, with Messenger tending to be most popular in more mature markets and WhatsApp showing strong in many emerging markets.
Facebook may have been rebuffed in their attempts buy out Snapchat, but it’s clear that the company’s purchasing strategies over the past few years have allowed it to establish a vast ecosystem of social networking.
3 in 4 Facebookers access the site daily
Of all the social networks tracked by GlobalWebIndex, Facebook can claim to have the most regularly engaged audience. Half of Facebookers are accessing the network multiple times per day, and a further 1 in 4 are using the platform about once a day. These figures are leagues ahead of many of the site’s rival networks.
That the majority of Facebookers are engaging on at least a daily basis is testament to how ingrained the platform has become within the daily lives of its users. Internet users may be becoming more comfortable using a range of platforms alongside each other but for the vast majority Facebook is the first, and most common, port of call when they are social networking.
‘Reactions’ has boosted engagement with ‘Like’ button to 80 percent
Facebook’s new features are often the topic of much critique but our data shows that the replacement of the one-size-fits-all ‘Like’ button with a selection of ‘Reactions’ appears to have been a hit among Facebookers. It’s now a sizable 8 in 10 who are clicking “like” or “reacting” to posts each month, a significant jump from previous quarters.
By giving users a greater range of ways to react to their friends’ updates, Facebook is converting its less-engaged users into more active ones, while also boosting the granularity of the data it will be collecting about how people emotionally respond to content – a key part of its ad-tech strategy and clear sign of its relevance to brand and advertisers.