Social networks usage in Western Europe is picking up, following the international growth trends. According to a recent eMarketer report, more than half Western Europeans, amounting to over 100 million Internet users, will visit social networking sites this year, at least on a monthly basis. This year social networking usage will be 16.2% higher than a year before and is predicted to keep growing, reaching 64.4% of Internet users in the region by 2015.
In four years’ time, about 150 million web surfers will also be visiting social networking sites on a regular basis, more than double compared to 2009. France, Germany, Italy and Spain are leading the rapid adoption of social networks in Western Europe. While the UK still holds the record of penetration among the countries in the region, the four aforementioned leaders in what growth by country is concerned will eventually surpass Britain by 2015.
“The increase in social networking usage in France, Germany, Italy and Spain stems from two factors: greater broadband access and increased usage among people ages 50 and older,” said Elisa Tavilla, eMarketer , the author of the “Western Europe Social Network Usage” report. “Social networking in Western Europe may be approaching the saturation point by 2015 as about two-thirds of each market’s online population will be social network users.”
The new eMarketer “Western Europe Social Network Usage” report also analyzes interesting aspects such as the similarities and differences between users across countries, the top social networks in the area and how social networks users actually spend their time while on these sites.