Last Thursday, We Are Social presented the latest digital report in collaboration with Meltwater. This report compiles various data on the evolution of the digital from partners such as GWI, Statista, Data.ai, etc., to provide an overview of the digital landscape as of July 2023. Following is an overview of the current digital trends!
Major Trends in the digital world
According to the latest data from the digital report, an intriguing trend is emerging: users appear to be spending less time online. This is reflected in an average decrease in the use of various media over the past year as time spent on the internet has decreased by 2.2% and time spent on social media has decreased by 2%.
However, despite this decrease in average usage time, the number of internet and social media users continues to grow, showing respective growth of 2.1% and 3.7%. This data can be interpreted as the result of the constant expansion of the user base despite a more balanced distribution of online time.
An interesting observation relates to device usage. Smart phones witnessed a slight increase in usage by 0.8%, highlighting their growing importance in our daily digital use. However, personal computer usage has decreased by 3.4% while tablets witnessed an even more significant decline of 7.8%. This trend underscores a shift in user preferences for devices, with a clear preference for smart phones as the primary means of accessing online services.
These data provide a captivating glimpse into current digital habits and underscore the importance of understanding changing user behaviors to best adapt digital strategies and offerings. This highlights an increasingly evolving digital world.
The Internet: A World Where Two-Thirds of the Population Is Connected
The latest data from the report reveals fascinating statistics regarding global internet usage. The following are the key figures to remember:
As of July 2023, there are 5.19 billion internet users worldwide, representing 64.5% of the global population. This underscores the increasing importance of digital connectivity on a global scale.
The average time spent on the internet per day is estimated at 6 hours and 40 minutes. This data demonstrates the ubiquity of digital in the daily lives of many people around the globe.
Access to the internet via smart phones is predominant, with 95.3% of global users preferring it as their primary means of connection. In contrast, access via computers is declining, with only 63.4% of users opting for this option. This trend highlights the growing preference for smart phones as the preferred gateway to the online world.
Information searching represents the major reason behind connecting to the internet for 59.2% of users. This quest for knowledge remains the top reason for using the web, underscoring its crucial role in seeking answers and resources.
Google Chrome dominates the browser market with a market share estimated at 62.58%. This success illustrates the popularity and user preference for this browser as a web navigation tool.
As a search engine, Google continues to reign supreme with an impressive market share of 92.64%. This overwhelming dominance highlights the trust users place in Google for their online searches.
The most visited website in the world is google.com, recording an impressive 88.1 billion monthly visits. It surpasses other web giants such as youtube.com and facebook.com, demonstrating Google’s significant influence in the global digital landscape.
Social Media On the Rise and Stronger Than Ever
Since the pandemic, a significant increase in the number of users in social media worldwide has been noticed, with a substantial 3.7% growth in just one year, now totaling 4.88 billion users. 46.4% of the users are females while 53.6% are males. These figures reflect the ongoing growth in social media adoption, which plays an increasingly central role in people’s daily lives.
As to the time spent on social media, the global average is estimated at 2 hours and 26 minutes per day. This highlights the significant appeal and influence that these platforms have on users, prompting them to dedicate a significant portion of their daily time to them.
The top five reasons for using social media reveal users’ needs and interests:
Keeping in touch with friends and family is the primary reason for 48.6% of respondents. This underscores the essential role of social media in maintaining meaningful social and emotional relations, especially in an increasingly connected world.
For 37.3% of users, a major reason for use is to pass the time. Social media offers a range of entertainment and content that captivates users who choose it for their leisure time activities.
Reading new stories is also an important activity for 34.6% of users. Social media has evolved into significant sources of information and narratives, where people can discover and share stories that interest them.
Finding content is an essential reason for use for 29.8% of respondents. Social media has become content- discovery platforms, allowing users to access a variety of media, publications, and creations.
Staying informed about trends attracts 28.4% of users. Social media plays a key role in the rapid dissemination of trends, news, and popular topics, making it a preferred source for staying up-to-date.
The Power of Social Media in Discovering New Brands
According to We Are Social, social media has become an increasingly attractive playground for brands. It now positions itself as the third source for brand discovery, just behind search engines and television advertisements. Approximately 27.7% of internet users aged 16 to 64 report discovering brands through advertising placements on social platforms.
Among these platforms, Instagram stands out as the most effective leader: over 62% of its users report looking for future purchases or consuming brand content there. This dominance makes Instagram an essential platform for brands looking to reach their target audience and generate interest from potential consumers.
Generation Z Prefers TikTok for Information
TikTok positions itself as the social platform where users spend the most time, with an average of 31 hours and 14 minutes per month per user. YouTube, with 27 hours and 21 minutes, and Facebook ,with 18 hours and 22 minutes, complete the podium.
Furthermore, the report highlights the increasing use of TikTok for informational purposes: 11% of respondents in the Digital News (RISJ) survey report using this platform to follow news, which is slightly lower than Twitter (12%). For the 18-24 age group, this figure even reaches 20%. The number of people, using TikTok as a source of information, has witnessed a remarkable 60% increase in just one year. This trend underscores the growing role of TikTok as a channel for news and informative content.
Threads: The New Star of Platforms
The major revolution in social media in recent months is the rise of Threads, the new Meta app aimed at competing with Twitter. The report indicates that Threads has seen phenomenal success, with 150 million downloads and 100 million active users worldwide in just one week.
According to We Are Social, this remarkable breakthrough is the result of Threads’ integration with Instagram. However, the major challenge for Meta will be retaining users on a different platform. GWI data highlights that Instagram users are more inclined to seek fun and entertaining content rather than follow the news. In comparison, the primary use of Twitter is to stay informed about current events. It will be interesting to see how usage motivations evolve for the new Threads service and whether Meta can retain users by offering a unique and compelling experience.