Love it or hate it, Facebook accounts for more and more of people’s time spent online.
In the US, one in every five pages viewed on the web is on Facebook, revealed market researcher Hitwise in a February 2 blog post.
Facebook filed its initial public offering on February 1 and revealed that its active user base had reached a record 845 million people, half of which check in with the site every day.
Not only are people visiting Facebook, they are coming back time and time again to make sure they are not missing out on what their friends say. Hitwise found that In January 2012, 96 percent of visitors to Facebook.com were return visitors.
Facebook.com became the number one ranked website in the US in March 2010 and is now the most searched for term in the US. Searches for “Facebook” account for a huge 4 percent of all searches within the country while 14 percent of the top search clicks are for “Facebook” and its related terms.
The Facebook phenomenon is not just limited to the US. Facebook.com is ranked in the top two websites in all markets except for China (where government officials block foreign social networks such as Facebook and Twitter). Local sites such as Sina Weibo, Baidu Zhidao and Renren are the top social destinations in China.
“Facebook.com’s largest footprint is in Canada, capturing almost 12 percent of all visits in that market,” said Hitwise. “It also recently surpassed Orkut, placing it behind only Google Brazil in market share.”
In December market researcher comScore found that 82 percent of the world’s internet population over the age of 15 (or 1.2 billion people) frequented a social networking site.
A recent study by researchers at Carnegie Mellon University, MIT and Georgia Tech found that while more than 200 million tweets were sent out each day on microblogging site Twitter only one out of every three tweets was worth reading.