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28 Important Twitter Statistics You Should Know in 2021

Since its launch in 2006, Twitter has been somewhat of an “underdog” in the social media world. Although it still can’t compete with the giants like Facebook in terms of users and revenue, the site found its value elsewhere — in the cultural and political conversation.

The Twitter statistics you’re about to read will explain the far-reaching impact of this social network. Over the last decade, Twitter’s name has most often been associated with major political events in the US. However, this doesn’t mean it’s merely a public forum for the opinionated. It’s also a growing business, as you’ll see in this overview.

Top Twitter Stats (Editor’s Choice)

  • Twitter’s users send out 6,000 tweets every second.
  • 10% of the platform’s users are responsible for 80% of all posted content.
  • With 128+ million followers, Barack Obama is the most followed user.
  • The platform makes the majority of its revenue through advertising.
  • Twitter introduced conversation controls to stop the spread of fake news.
  • Only 3% of US teens named Twitter as their favorite social media platform in 2020.

Twitter 101: Essential Twitter Stats

Twitter is perhaps the most controversial of all popular social media platforms, and it doesn’t stop attracting attention. Some industry experts mock it for creating little monetizable content, while others see it as the most democratic of all social networks. In this section, you’ll learn more about Twitter, its user base, and the content posted on the platform.

1. According to Twitter usage statistics, 6,000 tweets are sent out every second.

(David Sayce, The Hollywood Reporter)

This number translates to 500 million tweets sent out each day or 200 billion sent out per year. Interestingly, the average number of tweets per day hasn’t changed since 2014, indicating that’s when this social media platform peaked in terms of usage.

Major public events, especially political, usually cause a surge in the tweet volume. For example, the 2016 presidential election day saw more than 75 million election-themed tweets posted. Similarly, Japanese Twitter users broke the record for most Tweets posted in a second (143,199) during a 2013 TV broadcast of the anime masterpiece Castle in the Sky.

2. Twitter has 68.7 million users in the US.

(Statista, Marketing Dive)

According to the latest data on Twitter users by country, most of the platform’s users come from the US (68.7 million as of October 2020) — a fact that hasn’t changed since its launch. Users from Japan are the second most numerous (51.9 million), while Indian users are in third place (18.9 million). The UK and Brazilian users tied for fourth place with 16.5 million.

However, these official Twitter statistics from 2020 might not paint an accurate picture of the platform’s user base. That’s because, starting in the fourth quarter of 2018, the network began counting only its monetizable daily active users rather than all active users worldwide.

3. On average, Twitter had 6.54 billion visits in the second half of 2020.

(SimilarWeb)

Further Twitter traffic statistics reveal that an average visit in the second half of 2020 lasted 10 minutes and 49 seconds. During this time, users would visit 11.86 pages with a 30.57% bounce rate — the share of visitors who would leave the site after looking at just one page.

Like the regional distribution of Twitter’s daily active users, the greatest share of the visits (29.01%) came from the US. Japanese visitors were second, accounting for 15.08% of all incoming traffic. Compared to the first half of 2020, visits from the US were down by 5.43%, while visits from Japan were up by 8.56%.

4. 10% of Twitter users are responsible for 80% of all tweets posted.

(Pew Research Center)

One of the interesting facts about Twitter is that most users rarely tweet. A recent survey found that 10% of users are responsible for 80% of all content posted on the platform.

The differences in metrics between the top 10% and bottom 90% users are significant. The top 10% send out a median number of 138 tweets per month compared to just 2 sent out by the bottom 90%. According to Twitter user statistics, the median number of followers for the top 10% users is 387, while the bottom 90% have just 19 followers.

5. Analysts predict that 26.1% of US social media users will use Twitter by 2022.

(Statista)

In 2019, analysts predicted that a bit more than a quarter of social media users in the US would be on Twitter by 2022. That would mean that the site’s user base would slightly decrease compared to 2017 (28.2%) and 2018 (27.7%). However, this analysis was conducted in mid-2018, long before 2020’s Twitter user growth and revenue increase.

Looking at Twitter’s penetration among all American internet users, we can see that 22% of them had a Twitter account in 2019. This marked a decline from 24% in 2017 and 2018, but the recent positive developments suggest a much brighter future for the platform.

6. In the battle of Twitter vs. Facebook, statistics show the latter is still the go-to social media platform for news stories.

(Pew Research Center)

Facebook continues to dominate among social media networks in terms of news distribution. According to a 2018 survey, 43% of US adults use it to get news. In this respect, Twitter came in third behind YouTube (21%) — 12% of Americans use it as their go-to news source.

However, if we focus solely on Twitter users, statistics paint a different picture. In 2018, 71% of all Twitter users said they got their news from this social site. This puts it in second place among online platforms with the most news-oriented users, with only Reddit (73%) ahead. Facebook is not far behind, with 67% of its users saying that’s where they get their news.

7. In December 2020, “trump twitter” was the second most-used search keyword that brought visitors to the site.

(SimilarWeb, Socialbakers)

Twitter trends are often political, and this example illustrates that perfectly. The search string “trump twitter” was responsible for 1.44% of all visits that came from search engines. Just a month earlier, the same term was responsible for 2.61% of Twitter’s organic search traffic.

Looking at Twitter trending statistics from January 2021, prominent politicians’ accounts are among the fastest-growing. In just one month, President Joe Biden gained close to 5 million new followers. Vice President Kamala Harris’s two Twitter accounts had 6.5 million new followers combined, and Barack Obama added 1.2 million to his impressive follower count.

8. With 128+ million followers, Barack Obama is the most followed person on Twitter.

(Friend or Follow, Twitter)

Between May 2020 and January 2021, the former US President gained more than 10 million new followers, further strengthening his lead. The rest of the top 10 comprises entertainers like Katy Perry, Ariana Grande, and Justin Bieber, Portuguese soccer star Cristiano Ronaldo, and YouTube’s official account. Donald Trump, another former US President, had close to 90 million followers in early January 2021 when Twitter banned his account for inciting violence.

9. In Twitter fun facts, “face with tears of joy” is the all-time most-used emoji on the site.

(emojitracker)

Since the platform’s launch, the “face with tears of joy” emoji has been used 3.16 billion times and counting. The second most used is the “heart” emoji (1.58+ billion times), followed closely by the “loudly crying face” (1.14+ billion) and “heart-eye” (1.12+ billion) emojis.

10. The hashtag #TwitterBestFandom is in the Guinness Book of World Records.

(Guinness World Records)

Looking at Twitter hashtags, statistics show that only one has a spot in the Guinness Book of World Records. In March 2019, #TwitterBestFandom was used more than 60 million times in a single day, making it the most-used hashtag within a 24-hour period. The global streaming giant Rakuten Viki created this hashtag so people could vote for their favorites among the nominees for that year’s Soompi Awards, honoring South Korea’s leading entertainers.

Inside the Company: Twitter Business Statistics

Many social media analysts compare Twitter’s business model to Facebook’s. However, Twitter doesn’t seem too keen on winning the popularity battle against Mark Zuckerberg’s social media empire. This doesn’t mean it isn’t serious about its position in the social media marketing world, though. In fact, as you’ll soon learn, Twitter largely depends on advertising.

11. Twitter’s revenue primarily comes from two sources.

(Investopedia, Statista)

Although there are several ways the company makes money, two of them bring in most of its profits — advertising and data licensing. In the third quarter of 2020, the former brought in $808.45 million, up 36% from Q2, Twitter advertising statistics show. Data licensing was responsible for $127.28 million of the company’s total revenue during the same period.

If you’re wondering what data licensing is, it’s the selling of user behavior data to potential advertisers. Twitter gathers this information and offers it to other companies, providing them with valuable market insight for designing ad campaigns and launching new products.

12. Twitter’s growth is best observed in the company’s revenue.

(VentureBeat, Twitter)

In the third quarter of 2019, the company’s revenue was $824 million — up 9% over Q3 of 2018, but down 2% from Q2 of 2019. Despite a pandemic-related slowdown earlier in the year, recent stats about Twitter‘s finances show that its revenue in Q3 of 2020 reached $936 million. The 14% year-over-year increase indicates the company is on an upswing overall. Its US revenue grew by 10% in 2020, while the international revenue was up by 18%.

13. The number of Twitter users grew by 29% in 2020.

(VentureBeat, Twitter)

As mentioned before, the company stopped reporting on its total number of users as of Q4 2018. To showcase its growth to potential advertisers, the company started using the term “monetizable daily active users” (mDAU) — referring to active users who can see ads.

Looking at the data on Twitter users by year, 2020 seems to have been a good year for the platform. The mDAU number in the third quarter of the year reached 187 million, marking a 29% increase from 145 million in Q3 of 2019. According to Twitter representatives, the COVID-19 pandemic and the 2020 US presidential election helped spur this increase.

14. Twitter traffic stats suggest that 76.49% of the network’s traffic is direct.

(SimilarWeb)

Most Twitter visitors come to the site directly, either by typing the address into their browser or via the official app. According to December 2020 Twitter statistics by user traffic, 12.21% arrive at the site from web searches, and another 5.59% from links people post on other social media platforms. Finally, 4.92% of visitors come from referrals — when somebody sends them a link to a Twitter post via one of the many direct messaging apps.

15. There are 5,100+ Twitter Topics users can follow.

(Twitter)

To attract new users and advertisers, Twitter introduced Topics in late 2019. This feature allows users to personalize their feeds by following topics and trends that interest them. At the same time, it allows marketers easier access to their target audience.

According to Twitter followers statistics from the company’s Q3 2020 report, 70 million users currently follow at least one Twitter Topic, up 40% from the year’s second quarter. The number of Topics has also increased by 25% from Q2 of 2020, reaching 5,100+ in Q3.

16. Thanks to the newly introduced conversation settings, 33% more users open linked content before retweeting it.

(Twitter, BBC)

One of the most controversial Twitter facts is that many conspiracy theorists have abused the platform’s lack of content policing to distribute fake news. Things got out of control a few months into the COVID-19 pandemic, but Twitter decided to take matters into its own hands. The platform introduced new conversation settings that allow users to determine who can reply to their tweets and informs them if the content they’re reading isn’t fact-based.

Along with shutting down millions of fake accounts, Twitter also began encouraging users to act as “content evaluators” and combat the spread of fabricated information. The latest Twitter retweet stats show that 33% more users now read an article someone shares before retweeting it. Earlier, many would hit the “Retweet” button without reading the content first.

17. Twitter is tied with Facebook as the second most-used social media platform in organic B2B marketing.

(Content Marketing Institute)

Unsurprisingly, LinkedIn is the top platform for business-to-business (B2B) marketing, with 95% of B2B content marketers using it regularly in 2020. But according to Twitter marketing statistics, the platform attracts 82% of B2B content marketers, putting it in joint second place with Facebook and ahead of the overall more popular YouTube (62%) and Instagram (49%). Twitter and Facebook are both down from 2019 — 4 and 1 percentage points, respectively.

18. Twitter statistics show its users are 38% more likely to post opinions about brands and products than other platforms’ users.

(Twitter)

The popular belief that Twitter users are very opinionated seems to be true. And that doesn’t only refer to their political opinions — Twitter users are also more likely to post about brands, products, and services. They’ll also often reach out to brands’ and companies’ official accounts, particularly if they’re unhappy with their services or products.

Twitter Statistics - Twitter Screen

Twitter Demographics: Who’s Using the Platform?

Looking at its user base’s size, Twitter ranks outside of the top 10 most popular social media sites and apps worldwide. Its method of interacting with content also differs from what most internet users are accustomed to. For these reasons, it continues to be a mystery to many. In this section, we’ll learn about Twitter users’ age, gender, education, and political stances.

19. The average age of Twitter users worldwide is in the 25–49 range.

(Statista)

Globally, 57.1% of Twitter users are aged between 25 and 49 — 28.9% fall into the 25–34 bracket and 28.2% into the 35–49 group. 21.6% of the platform’s users are aged 18–24, while 12.3% are 50 or over. As for younger users, 9.1% are aged between 13 and 17.

20. US Twitter users are slightly younger than the global average.

(Statista)

The distribution of US Twitter users by age is slightly different. Here, an overwhelming majority of users (38%) fall into the 18–29 age group. Another 26% of users are aged 30–49, while 17% fall into the 50–64 bracket. There’s no information on the percentage of underage Americans using Twitter, but we know that 7% of the site’s US adult users are 65 or over.

21. Twitter’s market share in the teenage demographic is falling at a very rapid pace.

(Statista)

In the fall of 2013, 31% of American teenagers cited Twitter as their favorite social media platform. Since then, the site’s popularity among teen audiences has been declining steadily. According to the most recent Twitter statistics, only 3% of US teens still consider it their favorite social media app. While this puts it far behind Snapchat (34%), TikTok (29%), and Instagram (25%), it’s still ahead of Facebook, which is currently at an all-time low of 2%.

22. Statistics about Twitter suggest its users are predominantly male.

(Statista)

Research from October 2020 shows that 70% of Twitter users worldwide are male and 30% female. The gender gap is much smaller in the US. In a 2019 survey of adult internet users in the US, 45% said they used Twitter. Of this number, 53.3% were men and 46.7% women.

23. Most adult Twitter users in the US have a university degree.

(Pew Research Center)

A more in-depth look into Twitter usersdemographic data from 2018 reveals that 42% of them have at least a bachelor’s degree. Another 54% have graduated from high school, many of them currently in college, while only 4% haven’t finished high school.

24. US Twitter users mostly come from affluent households.

(Pew Research Center)

In other interesting facts, Twitter users in the US mostly come from high-income households. The same 2018 data shows that 41% have an annual household income of $75,000 or more. Another 36% of users reported an income in the $30,000–$74,999 range, while only 23% said they earn under $30,000 per year.

25. Twitter users are more likely to be Democrats.

(Pew Research Center)

In terms of political attitudes, 36% of the platform’s users identify as Democrats (compared to 30% in the general US population) and 21% as Republicans (26% in the US population). 

According to Twitter user stats, another 29% described themselves as Independents, which is similar to the 27% in the general population. Of these users, 60% said they were leaning more towards the Democratic Party and 35% towards the Republican Party.

26. 60% of Twitter users voted in the 2018 midterm elections.

(Pew Research Center)

Twitter’s US users are typically more likely to vote in the elections than the general population. However, this difference proved to be modest during the last election analyzed by researchers. Namely, 60% of Twitter users said they voted in the 2018 midterm elections, compared to 55% of all US voters.

27. Twitter interactions stats show that the political attitudes of the top 10% and other users aren’t that different.

(Pew Research Center)

The top 10% of Twitter users in terms of posting frequency and engagement differ from those who rarely tweet in other ways, too. On average, they’re more likely to be female and tweet about politics. However, in terms of political stances, those in the top 10% don’t differ significantly from other users. For example, an equal share of both groups (64%) agrees that black people in the US are treated less fairly than white people.

28. According to Twitter statistics, the platform’s users aren’t representative of the overall US population.

(Pew Research Center)

Twitter users represent the overall US population solely in terms of gender and racial makeup. In most other respects, there are sizable differences. For example, Twitter users are younger and more educated than the country’s general population.

An average Twitter user’s age is 40, compared to 47 in the overall population. Furthermore, 42% of the platform’s users are college-educated, compared to just 31% in the US general population. Differences in income are also notable — the share of Twitter users earning more than $75,000 per year (41%) is 9% larger than in the general population.

Twitter Stats: In Conclusion

No other social media site depends on major political and cultural events as much as Twitter. Over the last decade, it has provided a platform for people around the world to share their thoughts and opinions on whatever’s going on at the moment. Yet surprisingly, only a small fraction of the site’s users actually tweets, statistics show.

Much like other similar sites, Twitter couldn’t survive without advertising — and to attract advertisers, it needs to steadily grow its user base, which it has managed to do. Although the platform’s popularity among younger users is fading, its role in the global social and political conversation is as prominent as ever. With internet users worldwide losing trust in traditional media outlets, Twitter will likely become even more relevant as a source of information.

FAQ

Is Twitter losing popularity?

Twitter is not losing popularity. In 2020, the platform managed to grow both its revenue and the number of monetizable daily users (mDAU). The company itself admits that this increase was aided by major global events, namely the COVID-19 pandemic and the US presidential election. However, some industry experts emphasize that the platform loses a great portion of its net revenue each year due to its high operating costs and relatively small user base.

What percentage of the world uses Twitter?

When determining social media platform metrics, it’s best to look at active users among total internet users rather than the entire global population. As of October 2020, there are 4.66 billion active internet users worldwide, and Twitter has about 340 million users. Translated into percentages, this would mean that 7.3% of all internet users have a Twitter account.

How many Twitter accounts are there?

There are 340 million accounts registered on Twitter, but not all of them are active. In 2019, Twitter introduced a new user metric to showcase the number of active accounts that advertisers can monetize. According to those numbers, there were 145 million such accounts in 2019 and 187 million in 2020, marking an increase of 29% year-over-year.

How many people use Twitter?

As stated, Twitter has 340 million accounts, but just over half of them are active. In late 2020, the company started disabling accounts that spread fake news and conspiracy theories on Twitter in an effort to make the site more user-friendly. All in all, according to the official information from Q3 of 2020, 187 million people and brands currently use Twitter.

How many tweets per day?

On average, Twitter users send out 6,000 tweets each second. This translates to 500 million tweets daily and 200 billion annually. However, this doesn’t mean all Twitter users are equally active — research shows that 80% of all tweets are created by 10% of total users.

How many Americans use Twitter?

Ever since Twitter launched, Americans have made up the majority of its user base. As of October 2020, 68.7 million Americans were using Twitter. The second biggest user base is in Japan, where 51.9 million people use Twitter. India is the third-largest market with 18.9 million users, while Brazil and the UK share fourth place with 16.5 million users each.

Why do people use Twitter?

A 2016 article published in The Guardian revealed that most people use Twitter to be part of the ongoing social and political debate, something the platform is famous for. Although Twitter only ranks 13th on the list of most popular social networks, it has successfully curated its “underdog” image with a uniquely quick and snappy posting style, great for opinionated users looking to interact with others who share their interests and views.

How big is Twitter?

As of February 2021, the platform is worth $40.19 billion. As already stated, most of its revenue comes from advertising, while another significant portion comes from selling data on user habits to marketers. Looking at the net worth of Twitter, the company’s least successful period was 2015–2018. This was when its worth dipped below $20 billion. However, Twitter has since recovered and reached a record high of $42.68 billion in December 2020.

How many people use Twitter daily?

According to the company’s official metric, the platform currently has 187 million monetizable daily active users. These are users who are active on the site and can view messages from advertisers. As our Twitter statistics overview showed, Twitter has grown its active user base by 29% in 2020, largely due to the global pandemic and the US presidential election.

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