Majority Of U.S. Adults Use Facebook

“Ubiquitous” may be a slight exaggeration, but only slightly: Facebook is basically everywhere, with a large majority of online U.S. adults (79%) saying they have accounts on the world’s largest social network, according to a survey of 1,520 Americans conducted by Pew. That’s up from 72% in 2015.

By comparison, the other major social networks have significantly smaller user bases, with 32% of online adults using Instagram, up from 27% in 2015; 31% Pinterest, unchanged from last year; 29% LinkedIn, up from 25% in 2015; and 24% Twitter, up from 23% in 2015.  Adjusting for non-Internet users, that means more than two out of three U.S. adults (68%) are Facebook members, while 28% use Instagram, 26% Pinterest, 25% LinkedIn, and 21% Twitter.

However, the other social networks often enjoyed strength in specific areas: for example over half of online adults with a college education are on LinkedIn, while 45% of all online women use Pinterest.

Facebook leads in many measures of user engagement, including frequency of use, with the proportion of Facebook users who check in at least once per day up from 70% in 2015 to 76% this year. The proportion of Instagram users who check in every day is 51%, while 42% of Twitter users do the same, along with 25% of Pinterest users and 18% of LinkedIn users.

Facebook’s growth is powered in part by a continuing influx of older users: that proportion of online adults ages 65 and older who use Facebook jumped from 48% in 2015 to 62% in 2016.  Meanwhile, 72% of adult Internet users ages 50-64 are now on Facebook, as well as 84% of online adults 30-49, and 88% of those ages 18-29.

Of course the big social networks hardly exist in isolation, and Pew found major overlaps in their user bases. Thus, among Facebook users, 29% also use Twitter, 39% Instagram, 36% Pinterest, and 33% LinkedIn. And among Twitter users, 65% also use Instagram, 38% Pinterest, 54% LinkedIn, and 93% Facebook.
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