Statistics and Market Data about the Internet
This page provides statistics, facts and market data related to internet. This includes information on segments and industries such as social media, online search, user-generated content, online advertising and marketing as well as statistics on demographics and use.
Current internet user figures suggest that there are more than 2.5 billion users worldwide with a global penetration rate of 35 percent with North America accounting for 14 percent of global internet users.
Since the late 1990s, the internet has not only provided users with online experiences such as email, online search and general browsing but has also played a major role in enabling human interaction and reshaping traditional communications media such as film, television, music and telephone. The mainstreaming of internet features, such as digital music and video, user-generated content and digital media sales, have caused traditional media consumption to undergo significant changes. With the large-scale offerings of user-generated as well as licensed content in the forms of audio, video, games and writings, companies such as YouTube, Netflix, Spotify, Pandora and Tumblr have broadened the selection of available entertainment and enabled internet users to interact more closely with the media and each other.
The emergences of new digital technologies and websites have accelerated forms of human interaction through online forums, instant messaging, and social networking (since the mid-2000’s). Email has been a staple of the online experience. However, the rise of social networks, most notably market leader Facebook, and mobile social apps such as Twitter, LINE or WhatsApp have changed the notion of online communications and the divide of the personal and public online space. Facebook has more than 1.2 billion monthly active users, presenting a global reach of almost 50 percent of internet users worldwide.
According to internet market data, online sales via B2B and B2C e-commerce have not only expanded the reach and volume of traditional wholesale and retail trade but have also changed entire business infrastructures across various industries. The reach of online commerce has also enabled small and independent business owners to pursue their business ventures across local borders. Market data suggests a steady growth of global digital buyer penetration. Online shopping is not the only way of making money via the internet – statistics suggest a growth of digital content sales via e-commerce platforms such as iTunes, Google Play or Steam as well as the vast market of online advertising and marketing. Global companies such as Google, Amazon and Baidu generate the majority of their revenues via online services.
Whereas the majority of internet access used to be via a fixed-line connection to a desktop PC, the growth of mobile technologies such as WiFi and laptops as well as mobile devices such as smartphones and tablet computers have completely changed the online landscape. In countries with weak technological infrastructures, mobile internet has enabled people to access the web and to participate in the global information exchange. Notable examples are mobile banking and the ability to provide people with a global platform in order to broadcast their issues during times of unrest and crisis such as the Arab Spring movement. During national and global disasters such as Hurricane Sandy, Fukushima or Typhoon Yolanda, online services such as Google and Twitter have formed crisis response portals in order to co-ordinate and support rescue efforts.
Today, surveys indicate that daily internet usage plays a significant role in the everyday lives of consumers in the connected world.