ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

What are the Most Popular Social Network Sites?

Updated on April 29, 2012

What are the most popular social networks?

Unless you've been living on Mars, or some other suitably remote place, for the last few years then you will know the answer to this question. In case you've come back from five years of solitary meditation in the middle of the desert, I'll tell you. It's Facebook. However the more relevant question is probably, 'Which is the Most Popular Social Network apart from Facebook?'


Measuring the popularity of Social Network sites

To answer the question of which is the most popular or successful social network besides Facebook, you would have to look at various different sets of data. Each one would potentially give you a different answer, so you would have to weigh up the importance of each one. Here are some of the questions you would want to ask for each social network to get an idea of its popularity.

  • How many registered users does it have? This is the largest figure, and one that is often quoted. It includes everyone who currently uses the site, and everyone who ever has (and hasn't deleted their account or lost it through long inactivity)
  • How many active users does it have? This is perhaps more relevant but the answer will depend on how you define active users. People who use it daily? Weekly? At least once a month?
  • Amount of time on site - amount of time active users spend on the site on average each week or month.
  • Number of websites that link to the social network's website.
  • Number of page views

The first three are arguably the most important for social networks and social media sites, the latter two are more general measurements used to determine the popularity of websites.

Just How Popular is Facebook?

It helps to get a measure of Facebook's popularity, to use as a benchmark against other social networks. Because it is so successful and popular, they are also the site who most freely and willingly supply popularity data.

Number of active monthly users: In April 2012, Facebook revealed that it had 901 million active monthly users (presumably using the service at least once a month). It doesn't tend to quote registered users, as a) it doesn't need to, the numbers are so big anyway, and b) It doesn't want you to think there are people who registered and maybe used to use the site but don't anymore.

Number of active daily users - 526 million according to Facebook in April 2012.

Amount of time on site - 11-22 minutes a day or 8 hours per month, depending on what report you read (they don't add up to the same)

Pageviews - They are so big, this is best measured as a % of global internet page views. 5.3% of all pageviews are Facebook's.

Other stats - 3.2 billion comments per day, 300 million photos added daily. Sites linking to Facebook - 7.3 million. 44% of global internet users visit Facebook at some point.

Google Plus

Google Plus is a tricky one to give accurate statistics for, due to the clever wording used by people at Google, and due to the increasing integration with other Google products. However this is what we do know:

Monthly active users - 100 million. Definition of active is that they use the site at least once a month, however the wording of the statement giving this information suggests this may include people who have signed up with Google Plus, but only visit and Youtube etc and not Google Plus, due to the way they are integrated.

Number of active daily users - 50 million, though similar issues to the monthly users stats mentioned above.

Time on site - Controvertially, ComScore, an internet stats business, claims that Google Plus users spend only 3.3 minutes a month on Google Plus, compared to 8 hours on Facebook. This doesn't include mobile and other remote users however.

Number of visits to Google Plus - 61 million visits a month in March 2012, up 27% from the previous month. Unique visitors is 22 million per month.


Twitter is a relative old hand in social networking now. It may not be the hot new thing it once was, but it still packs a punch.

Number of registered users - 560 million

Number of active users - 140 million

Time on site - 21 minutes per month

Linked In

LinkedIn is a professional social networking site, used by companies and their employees, small businesses and recruitment consultants amongst others.

Number of members - 150 million (and increasing at a rate of 2 people per second)

Time on site - 17 minutes a month

Unique monthly visitors - 28 million

And the rest...

Pinterest - This is one of the hot new social networking sites, with 10 million + registered users, 2.5% of internet users visiting the site, and average monthly time on the site was 89 minutes, well above Twitter, Google Plus or LinkedIn.

Tumblr - The social networking and blogging site has 40 million registered users, spending an average time of 89 minutes a month (yes, same as Pinterest) on the site.

Concluding Thoughts

Facebook is so far in front of the others, they are lost on the horizon somewhere. Google Plus has a lot of catchup to play, but is growing quickly, thanks mostly to the enormous resources Google is bringing to bear, not least using their dominance in search and video to leverage more users. Twitter is fairly steady and not going anywhere fast, and LinkedIn is growing strongly but is operating in a somewhat different arena to the rest. Then there's newer sites like Pinterest, Tumblr and others, which are growing incredibly fast, but it is early days. It will be an interesting year or two ahead, seeing if anyone can close the gap on Facebook.


This website uses cookies

As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at:

Show Details
HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the or domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)
ClickscoThis is a data management platform studying reader behavior (Privacy Policy)