Social Media Usage and Growth in the Year 2021

The 21st century is an era of rapid technological development and advancement. This era has almost become synonymous with social networking sites or social media handles. People of all age groups from school going to young adults to even the elderly are actively getting accustomed to a new and digital world. Social media is one of the easiest and also a fun way of staying connected to your family and friends irrespective of their real-time location or time zone. More so, social media allows you to find or discover people with mutual interests, make new friends, discover new things, play games, upload posts, photos, videos, and a lot of other fun stuff. It has also reformed the way people advertise or market their business, products, and services.

Social Media Trends and Statistics in 2021

  • Over 3.81 billion people used social networking sites around the world in 2020, which is double of 2.07 billion in 2015.
  • The average person has 8.6 social media accounts in 2020, a sharp rise from 4.8 in 2014.
  • The recent percentage of social media users is 49.03% of the world’s entire population. 
  • The average number of people that use social media for work is 43% of all internet users between the ages of 16 to 64 across the world.
  • The current global average gender split of social media users is 55% men versus 45% women.
  • When looking at the top 8 social platforms by monthly active users, YouTube, LinkedIn, Twitter, and TikTok index higher in male users. Sites like Facebook and Instagram are more female orientated, especially Pinterest, which dominates with female audiences.
  • In regards to social media usage by device, 98.68% of people in the world access these social networking sites exclusively on a mobile phone. Around 78% of users are solely accessing platforms from their mobile phone, compared with only 1.32% visiting their social networks via desktop setups.
  • There are over 3.6 billion smartphones in the world, meaning over 84.85% of smartphone owners access social media using their phones.
  • There are 4.78 billion phones in the world, regardless of internet access capability, which means 62.12% of smartphone owners use social media on them.

Since being locked up in quarantine and social distancing have become the new normal for the year 2020, an increased number of people are joining the social media bandwagon and the already existing users have started using the ones where they were not active. A greater part of 2020 was engulfed in a Tik Tok mania with people across the world irrespective of gender and age group creating and viewing videos. Tik Tok playlists have taken YouTube and Spotify by storm. Since most social media channels saw a great increase in the traffic, there were several updates and new features to keep the users hooked.                                                                                    

Here are some noteworthy new features and changes that Social Media Platforms witnessed this year. 

  • Facebook: With schools and universities shifting to an online mode of teaching and students having to attend online classes and being unable to enjoy regular class shenanigans, Facebook introduced an only-student feature called “Facebook Campus”. This new college-only feature enables students to connect with others in their university on mutual interests and common grounds. This creates an online community platform and pushes forward remote learning.  
  • Instagram: The new features like the change in the like button for a message and the re-positioning of the search and discover buttons were definitely the new debate and discussion topic. It has restricted engagement bait, duplicate content, and sensitive content on Health or Finance. Instagram also launched a new video feature known as “Reels” enabling users to post short video clips. This feature is quite similar to Tik Tok videos. With worldwide protests against racial injustice, Instagram enabled verified blue ticks for the Black and the LGBTQIA+ community not prioritizing the number of followers. 
  • Twitter: Social media jargon modifies almost on a daily basis, and Twitter, yet again came with an update that reformed the space of retweeting. It bid farewell to “Retweets with Comments” and released its brand new “Quote Tweets”.
  • LinkedIn: LinkedIn is one of the most popular social media handles in the world today for working professionals and people looking to start their careers and with countless new updates, it is proving to be one of the most fast-leading social networking sites ever. LinkedIn rolled out its first-ever LinkedIn Stories, new messaging features, streamlined search results, and refreshed designs. It’s redefining the meaning of social media networks. 
  • YouTube: Right after the Tik Tok ban controversy, and the launch of Instagram reels, YouTube launched a feature “Shorts” that allows users to post 15-second video clips. For content creators, under the New Live Stream features, they can check their performance analytics and outreach. 
  • Google: If you’re a student or working irrespective of any profession, there’s a very rare chance that you haven’t used the Google Meet App to join a class or meeting. This new interactive and engaging tool has come as a safe haven during times when people are physically apart. And these are numerous exciting features within Google Meet making it the go-to app for video conferences. 

Other apps like Snapchat and WhatsApp too aren’t behind and keep introducing new and improved features to not lose out on their users and further increase their audience. If you haven’t explored these sites or these new features yet, there’s never a better time than now. Dive into the world of social media like never before and stay connected to the world!  

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