Social Media Analytics Blog

Facebook Country Statistics: Major Turnaround Of The Data Provided By Facebook Ads Data

Facebook Country StatisticsThanks to an email of one of our users this morning we became aware of fundamental changes of the numbers in our Facebook country statistics section. As noted several times, our Facebook countries statistics are based on the Facebook advertising data. Just recently there have been a lot of discussions regarding these statistics. The accusation was that the country stats sourced via the Facebook advertising data didn’t represent the real amount of Facebook users for certain countries. And indeed, we also reported the obvious differences of user numbers between the official Facebook quarterly earnings report and the numbers shown in the Facebook advertising data.

For example, Facebook officially reported a total user number of 1,11 billion for the first quarter of 2013. Back then the ads data reported a total user number of 982 million instead. So, there was a rough difference of nearly 150 million users. Our conclusion was then, that country stats like ours can be seen as rough estimates and to get the exact user numbers you need to check the official Facebook reports.

Facebook Country Statistics Changes

But now, it seems that Facebook changed the user numbers in the ads data significantly. As of today our Facebook country statistics shows a total user count for the world of 1,060,067,980. That’s an extensive plus of over 78 million or 7.94% of new users within just a month. Every country in the top 10 seems to have added one million or more users. It is further noteworthy that now only rounded totals are displayed.

Major Turnaround Facebook Country Statistics

We want to play it safe and therefore we compared the total number of users in the USA and Brazil of our stats directly with the numbers on Facebook. Just create an ad in this countries and you get the numbers.

Facebook AdsAudience United States

Date: 06/26/2013

Facebook Ads Audience Brazil

Date: 06/26/2013

 As you can see, you get exactly the same numbers like shown in our Facebook country statistics.

The biggest users correction was done for the United States with over 9 million new users. Furthermore, notable user increases were made for Japan with nearly 4.8 million new accounts, that’s a plus of 34.58% and Nigeria with a percentage plus of 41.46%.

The Million (Dollar) User Question

The biggest question remains: Are the Facebook country statistics based on ads data now compliant with the official earning reports?

What do you think of it? Are the country statistics a great indicator for the Facebook usage in certain countries again?

Facebook Country Stats April 2013 – The U.S., The Fatigue And The Youth Problem

quintly Free Facebook Country StatsThe voices are growing louder that young users, so to speak the new generation, increasingly puts less value on Facebook. Especially platforms like Tumblr or apps like Snapchat are currently enjoying great popularity among teenagers. It is also often assumed that the next generation puts more emphasis on privacy and therefore limits the personal usage of Facebook.

Additionally, especially in Facebook’s country of origin, the United States, and often also in other industrialized countries many older generations are represented. Apparently quite a lot young people are kind of uncomfortable with the fact that their parents are maybe able to read along everything they post.

In general these are all rather guesses since the user base of the United States seems to be leveling off instead of highly shrinking. Facebook itself continues to optimize the user experience and of course, this way also its monetary interests. Especially the last month brought some notable innovations. First of all, the good old news feed got completely redesigned. This is the first overhaul for the news feed since its introduction in September 2006! According to the slogan ‘Goodbye Clutter’ Facebook now aspires to be a personalized newspaper. Next to that the user Timeline also got a revamped look and several improvements for showing different content categories and likes.

Like the Graph Search, Facebook is currently rolling out the new news feed only gradually and randomly. The new Timeline should already be activated for most of the users. In general this innovations are focusing again on the importance of images – bigger images. On the one hand this is again a reaction to booming social networks like Pinterest, Instagram and others and on the other hand, this could also be seen as a reaction to the young generation problem.

And just yesterday Facebook introduced its own Android Launcher called Facebook Home and the HTC first Phone. Instead of building a completely separate mobile phone, Facebook Home is nested deep into the Android system. With features like Cover Feed, Chat Heads and Notifications, Facebook gets an omnipresent integration into your mobile experience if you are using an Android device. Of course Facebook Home is a very significant step in the direction of the seemingly disinterested teenagers.

But finally to the hard facts – what are the Facebook country stats for April?

Facebook Country Stats April 2013

Facebook Country Stats April 2013 Top10

Naturally the number of active Facebook users has always been subject to relatively strong fluctuations. However in case of the Unites States and the United Kingdom a loss of over 2.2% is kind of notable. Emerging countries such as Brazil, India, Indonesia and Mexico continue to grow inexorably. But also for these countries the user growth has slowed down a bit. A total loss of 0.20% of the worldwide Facebook users is certainly not worth mentioning.

Just in the last overview of the Facebook Country Stats for March we have deeper analyzed and compared the user development of the U.S. and Brazil. This time we just want to focus on the U.S. due to the mentioned guesses at the beginning of this post.

quintly Facebook Country Stats U.S. 1 Year Window

Checking the Facebook user development for over a year, the U.S. is still in the plus with 2.47% more users than on the 3. April 2012. However, the current number of active users is almost at the same level of mid-June 2012. In this chart quite clearly to see is that the tipping point for the positive development of active users was at the end of December 2012. Here, Facebook had nearly 170 million active users in the United States.

Since our Facebook Country Stats are generated using the public data from Facebook Advertising, it is also worth to take a look at web traffic analytics tools like Compete. The development of unique visitors from the U.S., according to Compete.

In the above chart it’s not that clear as in our chart. The number of unique user are slightly falling in February of this year. However, there is no such clear bend like above.

The question now if of course, wether this is a level off of the user ratios, or whether the numbers will fall further in the future. As explained earlier, Facebook is currently trying everything possible to convince the next  generations to use its social network. In fact, there are many different factors influencing the activity of the user. Research company Pew internet describes the Coming and Going on Facebook with quite a lot of interesting results. Here it gets clear that 38% of the  people in the age group of 18 and 29 years want to spend less time on Facebook. But 61% of these people don’t want to change their activity.

In this regard, it’s worth to control those results with data from Alexa. In the one year time period the time spend on the site looks quite stable with around 27 minutes in average.

Time On Facebook From Alexa

It will be fascinating this year to see where the journey goes for Facebook. There are a lot of new features and innovations on the go, but at least the success of these depends on us – the users.

What do you think? Is the Facebook fatigue already ubiquitous in industrialized countries? Does the youth of today really turn away from Facebook? Or are these only normal network processes and everything will settle by itself?

Facebook Country Statistics March 2013 – Top 10 Countries And A Comparison Of The U.S. And Brazil

quintly Facebook Country Stats March 2013We are already in March of this year and it’s time to throw a glance at our Facebook country statistics. If we take a look at the Facebook news of February, there wasn’t such big one like the introduction of the Graph Search. At least for advertisers, an important message was that Facebook, after it has been rumored for a long time, bought Microsoft’s Atlas platform. So this could be the next step to a web wide advertising platform and you can probably target your Facebook audience not only on the social network itself, but also on normal websites.

Back to our Facebook country statistics. In the last month there was a worldwide user loss of 4.3 million, this month it is 3.7 million. As already mentioned this amount of user loss is nearly nothing for a service with one billion users. In addition, the cleanup process of fake, spam, user-misclassified and duplicate accounts tend to be permanently. Therefore, no need to worry that the worldwide usage of Facebook will shrink in the next time.

Facebook Country Statistics March 2013 – Top 10 Countries

Facebook Country Statistics For March 2013

As you can see, six countries in our top 10 lost an amount of users while 4 countries added some new users. In fact, the United States lost the most users with a loss of 2.78%. On the other hand, the top gainer of new users was again Brazil with a plus of 3.39%.

The One Year User Development Of Brazil And The U.S.

Since this seems to be a quite interesting comparison, we took a closer look at this two countries.

Flag Country Users Today Users One Year Ago Change Change in % Population Facebook Adoption (%)
United States 160.4 Million 155.7 Million +4.7 Million +3% 316 Million 50.76%
Brazil 67.9 Million 37.9 Million +30 Million +79.08% 194 Million 35%

As you can see, the total number of U.S. based Facebook users has only barely grown with 4.22%, while Brazil has grown by a massive number of 79% in the same period. The Facebook penetration in the United States is currently 51.4%, in Brazil it is 34.8%, so a little over one-third. But why is that interesting? The U.S. is so to speak, the mother country of Facebook. From here, the largest social network in the world started to conquer the world in 2004. So Facebook has achieved a sense of normalcy in the U.S. and the highest point of the adoption seems almost to be reached.

In the case of Brazil it is slightly different. When Facebook was founded, also Orkut, a product by Google, was launched. Really fast Orkut became the premier social network in Brazil. In 2008 Google moved all Orkut related operations to Belo Horizonte in Brazil. Therefore in late 2010 Orkut had a notable user base of more than 36 million people in Brazil. But at the same time Facebook started to grow like blazes and in the summer of 2011 Facebook finally surpassed Orkut. Then in 2012 Google started to unify Orkut user profiles with Google Plus profiles. In fact, Orkut still seems to be alive with 178k unique visitors in January 2013, although the latest blog entry in the official Orkut blog was made at the end of September, 2012.

Today Facebook has twice as much users as Orkut when it reached its tipping point in Brazil. But are more Facebook users in Brazil possible? If we take a look at the age and gender distribution of the U.S. compared with Brazil, its obvious that in Brazil in the age groups of 45 – 54 and 55 + is very high growth potential yet.

Facebook Country Statistics Gender And Age Distribution Of U.S. And Brazil

In summary, it can be said that Facebook seems to have reached maturity in its home country, but there are countries like Brazil and others which still have a great growth potential. What’s your opinion, will Facebook continue to grow worldwide or did it already reach the tipping point?

Facebook Country Stats February 2013 – Top 10 Countries Lose Users Due To The Ongoing Account Cleanup

quintly Facebook Country Stats February 2013Facebooks Graph Search was the major topic in the first month of 2013. We have also written about it, and contributed our initial thoughts how this new social search will change the social media marketing of businesses and also our general search behavior. While a normal Google search results in list of links and web pages, so virtual objects, Facebooks search delievers real objects, like places, people and things as the result. You can also refine a graph search result more and more. Example: you can easily find people who like the same stuff like you, who live in the big city near you, like the music of the eighties and are able to speak 3 different languages. Of course, such a search power leads to privacy concerns for many users. So the question is whether this feature will have a negative impact on the Facebook country stats or not.

The current user losses are obviously due to the ongoing cleanup of fake, spam, user-misclassified and duplicate accounts. This was again communicated in the Facebook 4th-quarter results, which indeed had surpassed the general estimates, shows us that mobile is booming, but also gave us a view on the current user numbers and the account cleanup processes.

Thanks to our friends of we can show you the following numbers: Currently there are Facebook users worldwide. Of these accounts there are 76.032.000 “bad” user accounts, which are divided into 52.800.000 duplicate accounts, 13.728.000 user-misclassified accounts and 9.504.000 spam accounts.

Facebook Country Stats February 2013

Checking the current top 10 countries, we can easily see that six countries lost a lot of users, while only four countries are still adding new users. While the number of users in Brazil are continuously increasing (+1.7 million), the United States lost nearly 3 million active users and Indonesia lost more than 2 million users. Both can, of course, be related to the above noted account cleanup process.

Facebook Country Stats February 2013 - Top 10 Countries

Top 10 Countries With Highest User Losses

Therefore we go into more detail and look at the top 10 of countries with the highest loss of users. As already mentioned, most users were lost by the United States and Indonesia. But also Japan lost one million active users. The highest percentage user decrease with nearly 11% was however achieved by Nigeria.

Facebook Country Stats - Top 10 Countries With User Losses

Top 10 Countries With Highest User Growth

But every cloud has a silver lining, so there is also a user growth in several countries all over the world. Next to aforementioned Brazil, which also was noted for its growth in the January 2013 Facebook country stats, countries like the Philippines, Vietnam, Turkey and Poland added hundreds of thousands of new users each within the last 4 weeks. In this sense, Turkey is on the verge to replace the United Kingdom on the 6th place of the 10 biggest Facebook Countries.

Facebook Country Statistics Of The Top 10 Growing Countries

What do you think? Will the Graph Search have a negative impact on the Facebook country stats? Or are all user losses related to the account cleanup process?

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