Here at PAYFORT we know that social media plays an integral role in modern business, especially in the world of ecommerce and web based organizations. That’s why try our best to stay on top of the latest trends and news coming out of this constantly evolving industry. This month, a major milestone was achieved when India became the largest country of Facebook users, indicating some interesting trends about the adoption of social media in developing countries.
Facebook Growth in India
Facebook in India has been a growing market for years as more Indians gain access to reliable internet connections. In July of 2017 this growth finally propelled India to the top when Facebook announced that it now has 241 million active users in India (over a million more than the U.S.) making India the country with its largest user base for the first time ever. The report, which was commissioned by The Next Web also highlighted that the pace of growth in India out performs all other countries (India has increased at a rate of 27% during the last six months compared to 12% in the United States).
Despite breaking through this milestone, social media penetration (the number of users as a percentage of total population) is still lower than more developed countries and this represents a huge opportunity for Facebook. According to the report, as of July 2017 only 19% of India’s population was actively using the platform, compared to 73% in the United States.
It is unlikely that India will achieve that level of penetration any time soon, but even if they reach the global average of 42%, it would translate to over half a billion Facebook users. Breaking it down by city, India’s New Delhi came in at No. 6 globally with ~15 Million users actively using the social network.
2 Billion Users and Counting
It was just last month that Facebook announced it had surpassed the 2 billion user mark, but that impressive growth (in the last 5 years Facebook has grown 1 billion users to 2 billion) comes with an important caveat. Facebook has now largely captured all the available users in developed countries, this means that in order to acquire the next billion, they will need to find ways to grow in developing countries.
As it stands now, the social media giant is the undisputed leader around the globe but with 15% of the world’s population still offline and over 700 million internet users located in China (a country Facebook has been banned from since 2009) the road to 3 billion could be difficult.
It seems that Facebook believes India will play a major role in helping them hit the 3 billion mark. A recent report from eMarketer forecasts that 42.6% of Internet users in the country will access Facebook by the end of the year and expects that number to increase to 70.1% by 2021.
With all this growth expected in the next 5 years, you can be sure digital marketers will be looking for future online advertising opportunities across the country of India.
Is your business advertising in India? Does the social media growth in the country change the way you look at the Facebook as a social platform? Let us know on Twitter and if you’re looking for more social media insights be sure to check out our State Of Social Media report.