Last Updated: December 4, 2020
The things we can’t imagine the life without in the 21st century are not that many. However, besides water, food, and adequate housing, the global network has become something most people find necessary and irreplaceable. At least the internet statistics we found suggest as much.
Here are the most impressive numbers I stumbled upon in my search.
Impressive Internet Statistics (Editor’s Choice):
- Over half of the world’s population in online; that’s more than 3.5 billion users.
- Over half of those browsed websites using mobile devices: 52.2%.
- On average, mobile internet users spend nearly 3 hours online every day.
- Somewhat logically, Asian users are by far the most numerous at about 2 billion.
- Somewhat scarily, more than 50% of teenagers are addicted to the global network and its endless possibilities.
- Global brands recognize that – Google generates about 95% of its revenue through ads.
- Ecommerce retail grows about three times faster than brick-and-mortar shops.
Without the internet we wouldn’t be able to conduct business, communication with friends and family would be only over the phone and snail-mail, which is dread, and most importantly, we wouldn’t be able to entertain ourselves as we can now.
I mean, cat videos! C’mon!
But it is not only entertainment and communication, as the internet is a limitless trove of knowledge and expertise to which we, at the Hosting Tribunal, wish to contribute with this extensive list of internet statistics.
Its main goal is to help us understand and appreciate the service so many take for granted.
Internet User Stats
As much as it is powered by technological developments, the global network grows because of the throngs of users who connect to it from all corners of the world.
1. It took 4 years for the internet to reach 50 million users.
(Source: Magnify Skill)
Modern technologies have the advantage to access the general public over the internet. For example, it took Facebook just 2 years to reach 50 million users, while for iPod the time needed to reach this milestone was 3 years. internet stats show that the internet itself took 4 years to reach 50 million users.
Even though these numbers don’t seem impressive nowadays, just a few decades ago they were mesmerizing, especially considering how much time it took some older technologies to reach the 50 million user mark. TV took 13 years, while for the radio it took 38 years to get there.
2. The internet reached 1 billion users in 2005.
The important mark of reaching 1 billion users was achieved in 2005 by joined forces of internet users worldwide. In fact, at the start of 2005, the milestone was exceeded by 24 million, and the number of internet users has been rapidly increasing ever since.
3. In 2011, the 2 billion user mark was reached.
It took 6 more years for the population of the internet to double in size and reach 2 billion users. In 2011, the 2 billion user mark was exceeded by quite some margin.
4. Currently, there are over 3.5 billion internet users.
To get over 3 billion internet users in the world, 2018 needed to come around. Roughly half of the world’s population has internet access; today, with 3.5 billion users, the internet is more readily available than adequate sanitation.
5. Asia has more than 2 billion internet users.
internet users from Asia make for two-thirds of the internet population, with 2 billion users coming from this region of the Earth. There are currently 2.062 billion internet users in Asia. That’s 62 million over the 2 billion mark, which is not an insignificant decimal point.
6. Europe has more than 700 million internet users.
Europe has the second largest population of internet users, with 704.8 million users coming from the Old Continent.
7. Latin America has more than 438 million internet users.
According to Statista’s stats about the internet, Latin America and the Caribbean is the third most internet-friendly region in the world. There are 438.25 million users in this part of the globe, with under 200 million of the continent’s population still not having reliable internet access.
8. Africa has more than 455 million internet users.
Over a third of Africa’s population has internet access. There are 455 million internet users in Africa, meaning that the internet is more readily available than water is in the region. It is estimated that 40% of the population doesn’t have regular access to clean drinking water.
9. North America has 345 million internet users.
Canada and the US have just over 345 million internet users, combined. North America has the fifth largest internet population overall, with the population being just under half of Europe’s. Considering that the entire continent has a population of 579 million, we can conclude that nearly two-thirds of them are online.
10. Australia has just under 30 million internet users.
Australia and Oceania is the region with a population of 38.8 million people. Out of that number, 30 million access the internet regularly, making the continent one of the most advanced places when it comes to the availability of the internet. According to Google’s research and internet world stats from 2017, Australia is the second country in the world in terms of mobile internet penetration, sitting at 37%.
11. 22% of internet users come from China.
(Source: Internet Live Stats)
China is the country with the most internet users in the world. According to the 2014 data, 642 million internet users were from China at the time, representing 22% of the total internet population. This number has only increased since.
The list of top 20 countries by the number of internet users is dominated by China. It has so many internet users that the next 3 countries combined, the US, India, and Japan, barely reach the Chinese number.
12. 96% of Norwegians used the internet in the last 3 months.
(Source: Statistics Norway)
Internet usage statistics and data from Norway’s statistics bureau show that 96% of Norwegians have accessed the internet at least once in the last 3 months. 93% of the nation used the internet for email communication, while 92% used it for their banking-related needs. 61% of Norway’s citizens were online at least once in the last 3 months in order to book a holiday, and 41% of the nation used movie or music streaming services during the period.
13. 98% of US citizens aged 18-29 are online.
When it comes to internet usage trends, the youth in America dominates the picture.
Surveys say that 98% of adults aged 18-29 are online in the US. 97% of those between the ages of 30 and 49 use the internet, while the percentage of US citizens aged 50 to 64 that use the service is 87%. It is estimated that 66% of US residents over the age of 65 used the internet in 2018.
14. More than 60% of users prefer WiFi to mobile internet.
WiFi has definitely become the most preferred method for connecting to the internet for users worldwide. According to 2018 internet statistics and a survey conducted by Deloitte, the famous consulting agency, two-thirds of internet users prefer WiFi connections over mobile ones such as 4G, especially when browsing the web on their phone. Android phones remain the most popular option, too.
15. More than 3 billion people are on social media.
Over 3 billion people, or 72% of the total number of internet users, are on social media and use the internet mostly to access them. The most preferred tool for access is the mobile phone, as shown by the data provided by multiple social media giants such as Facebook and Twitter. Twitter, for example, has more than 330 million users that visit it at least once a month.
Internet Facts and Statistics
2019 celebrated the 50th anniversary of ARPANET, the forebearer of the global network. Inclusive as it is, the internet is not that evenly adopted around the world.
16. ARPANET, the predecessor of the internet, was established in 1969.
The Advanced Research Projects Agency Network, or ARPANET, was established back in 1969 for the purpose of communication between regional academic and military networks. It was used throughout the 1980s as the main communication method in these fields.
This early packet-switching network was the first one to use TCP/IP protocols, which later became the basis of the modern internet.
17. The first-ever website went live on April 6, 1991.
The first-ever website on the internet was launched more than 27 years ago, on April 6, 1991. It was the website launched at CERN and it contained instructions on how to set up a server and how to deal with hypertext-based tasks. The website is still alive and kicking, and it can be accessed here. Web traffic stats available show that it still receives plenty of visits.
18. The term internet surfing was coined by a librarian from New York.
Jean Armour Polly, a librarian from New York, is credited for coming up with the phrase surfing the internet. She is one of the earliest internet users, starting to use the service regularly all the way back in 1991. She also authored multiple books on safe internet usage.
19. The internet was added to USA Today’s list of New Seven Wonders.
(Source: USA Today)
In November of 2006, the internet was added to the USA Today’s list of New Seven Wonders, cementing it as one of the wonders of the new age. The internet is, in fact, the only one of its kind on the list, as the list includes human-made marvels such as the Mayan ruins and natural ones such as the Grand Canyon.
Considering how many websites are there, 2020 can only bring more achievements like this for the internet.
20. There were more than 5 million Terabytes of data on the internet back in 2010.
According to the data provided by Google, there were more than 5 million terabytes (or 5 exabytes) of data flowing through the internet, back in 2010. At the time, Google’s data accounted for 0.004% of all content available online.
21. Libya is the country with the slowest internet in the world.
(Source: Dotspeedtest Blogs)
Internet traffic breakdown for the slowest internet speeds available goes like this:
With an average available internet speed of less than 1 megabyte per second, Libya appears to be the country with the slowest internet in the world. The country got internet service back in 2000, and 95% of the population still doesn’t have access to the service. Those who do struggle with the speeds available, as they are 52% slower than the global average.
The list of countries with the slowest internet also includes Nepal, Nigeria, Iran, India, Bolivia, Syria, Indonesia, Kazakhstan, and Malaysia.
22. There are more than 1.9 billion websites on the internet.
Data from October 2018, shows that there are just over 1.9 billion registered websites on the internet. This number is an increase of more than 100 million from the same period of 2018 so it is likely that the internet hit 2 billion available web pages during 2019 (the stats are not out yet).
23. There are 5,000 new internet domain names registered every hour.
The statistics for the average number of registered domain names per hour, or per day, haven’t changed much in the last 7 years. Back in 2011, the average number of registered domains on the internet was around 135,000. Internet usage statistics for 2017 show that an average hour saw 5,000 new domain names registered, which amounts to 120,000 per day.
24. 100,000 internet domains are deleted every day.
In the same vein, the number of deleted and transferred domains remained similar for the last decade. Approximately 100,000 domain names are deleted every day, while 160,000 are transferred from one owner to another. This leaves us with a daily surplus of around 20,000 new internet domains.
25. The most expensive internet domain was sold for $49.7 million.
Some of the publicly available reports of internet domain sales can make your head spin thanks to the vast sums involved. The most expensive publicly reported internet domain is Carinsurance.com which was sold for 49.7 million dollars, according to the available internet stats. Interestingly, the second most expensive domain ever was also from the insurance niche; Insurance.com was sold for $35.6 million.
26. The highest estimate for internet domain worth is $3 billion.
Most of the internet domain sales never get publicly reported. This is the case with Cars.com, the second-largest automotive site in the US. There were rumors flying around that the domain was sold for more than $870 million a few years ago. Regardless of whether the rumors are true, the domain is now estimated to be worth $3 billion, or more than Facebook paid for Instagram.
Internet Technology Facts and Statistics
Different people have different needs and meet them with different technologies.
27. VPN services are most commonly used in Asia and the Middle East.
VPN, or a virtual private network, is the service that encrypts all outgoing and incoming traffic, ensuring maximum privacy and safety.
Internet users across the world are just beginning to realize the benefits of such services. Indonesia and India are leaders VPN users, both having 38% of those looking out for their online safety. China has the second-largest rate of VPN use among internet users at 31%, while the US and European countries are not even in the top 10.
28. 30,000 websites are hacked every day.
Here are some scarier internet facts and statistics.
It is true that most website hackings don’t have malicious intent behind them. An average hacker is there just for the giggles, and he’s most likely to add a joke to the website or rearrange some items in order to create confusion.
However, with 30,000 hacker attacks happening every day, many are meant to cause serious harm and trouble. Stealing personal information like end-users’ names, addresses, passwords, and even social security and credit card numbers is a major concern for every website that handles such information. This is the reason why security should be the number one concern for everyone online.
29. Some hacking attacks can last less than 5 seconds.
(Source: Huffington Post)
WiFi statistics published recently show that an attack on a wireless network can last less than 5 seconds. If the wireless network happens to be not protected by a password and left open, the attack can take even less than 2 seconds.
We all love the convenience that WiFi networks provide, but being aware of the threat that open networks present is one of the primary principles of modern-day safety.
30. 50% of 14-15-year-olds are addicted to the internet.
(Source: The HealthSite)
According to a recent study, as many as half of 14 and 15-year-olds are addicted to the internet.
The study was conducted in the UK and it involved more than 2,200 children of this age. Up to 50% of them reported feeling addicted to the internet, especially to websites and apps such as Facebook, Instagram, and Snapchat.
Apart from being a huge waste of time, overindulging in internet usage can be as damaging to the young mind as any other form of addiction, including drugs.
Mobile Internet Usage
Mobile internet usage is growing quickly. It already assumes nearly half of all the internet traffic and more than 50% of the website users.
31. 80% of internet users own a smartphone.
The most recent internet user stats show that 80% of all internet users own a smartphone or a phone that is capable of connecting to the internet. Mobile carriers keep handing out more sophisticated phones, even with the cheapest, basic contracts, so this number is expected to maintain the momentum it has enjoyed ever since 2004.
Virtually every website needs to become mobile user-friendly if it wants to survive in 2020.
32. 71% of mobile communication goes through WiFi.
(Source: Wi-Fi Alliance)
Under 30% of mobile communication goes through the carriers’ mobile network. Whether it’s instant messaging, making calls, or surfing the web, over 70% of all communication done on mobile phones in the US goes through WiFi networks. This statistic once again shows users’ strong preference for this type of connection to the world.
33. The average mobile internet user spends 2.8 hours per day online.
Global internet usage data shows that the average time spent online hasn’t changed that much for desktop users during the last decade. In 2010, the time spent online was 2.4 hours, then it increased to 2.6, and today it’s back to 2.4 hours per day, on average.
For mobile users, however, the story is completely different. The average time spent online in 2010 was 0.4 hours, and by today that number has increased dramatically, reaching 2.8 hours.
34. 80% of all social media time is spent on smartphones.
Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and all other major social media platforms report impressive app usage stats. By far, the most visits they receive are from mobile internet users. A piece of statistics that all big names in the social media game agree on is that 80% of all of the time spent on their platforms is by smartphone users using the official apps.
35. 88% of Facebook users are using the smartphone app.
Most of the social networks are accessed on smartphones. Facebook reports that 88% of all visits are via phones. This number increases when we incorporate other mobile devices, such as tablets. The company claims that 95% of their visits are from smartphones and tablets and that just 31.8% of users use desktops and laptops exclusively.
36. 80% of Twitter users are no mobile.
The story of Facebook is similar throughout the market; Twitter reports that 80% of its 300 million daily visits come from mobile phones. Internet traffic statistics show that Instagram and Snapchat have a similar influx of mobile users.
37. Mobile phone internet user penetration was 48.8% in 2014.
In 2014, 48.8% of the global mobile device users accessed the internet from their mobile phones. The highest rates of mobile internet user penetration were noticed in Asia and Africa where 65.1% and 59.5% of users, respectively, accessed the internet on mobile devices.
38. Mobile phone internet user penetration is 61.2% in 2018.
The percentage of web traffic from mobile keeps on growing. The number of global mobile internet users has increased by more than 10% over the last 4 years. Today, the mobile phone internet user penetration index is 61.2%, which amounts to just over 2 billion people accessing the internet on smartphones.
39. Mobile phone internet user penetration increased to 63.4% in 2019.
The percentage of internet traffic shared by mobile phones will keep increasing.
The rise of the popularity of mobile internet kept its momentum through 2019. It was projected that 63.4% of phone users will be using their smartphone devices as the main tool to access the internet as the year progresses. In 2020, the number of people using mobile internet service is expected to climb to 2.87 billion.
40. 78.17% of Google searches were from mobile phones during October 2018.
(Source: Net MarketShare)
Google users statistics from September and October 2018 show that more than 78% of all searches came from mobile phones. Desktop now holds a lowly number of just under 12% of all searches on the most popular search engine.
41. Mobile internet users had an average of 7.5 minutes of on-site time in 2017.
(Source: Stone Temple)
In 2017, an average mobile internet user spent 7.5 minutes on a page he/she visited. The average time spent on-site for desktop users was just 30 seconds less, or around 7 minutes.
42. 0.7% of all website traffic was shared by mobile phones in 2009.
Internet stats show that, in 2009, just 0.7% of worldwide website traffic originated from mobile devices. A year later that number increased to 2.9%, while in 2015 more than a third of the global traffic came from mobile phones.
43. 52.2% of all website traffic originated from mobile phones in 2018.
Today, more than a half, or 52.2%, to be exact, of all website traffic is generated through mobile phones. For the first time in history, mobile internet has taken a lead over desktop internet use.
The rates of mobile internet usage are especially high in Asia and Africa, as mentioned before, mostly due to the lack of infrastructure available for traditional, and more expensive, internet service.
44. 75% of US smartphone owners check emails on their phones.
(Source: Blue Corona)
Approximately, every 4th internet user in the US checks their email on desktop, internet statistics show. 75% of internet users from America prefer checking into their emails on the go.
81% of those who prefer using their smartphones for email communication are aged 18 to 24 while 73% of those over the age of 35 prefer to use their phones for this purpose.
45. 62% of smartphone users made an online purchase using their device.
Mobile commerce is gaining momentum. The ecommerce market is shifting to mobile, according to internet trends of the last few years. Statistics show that 62% of smartphone owners have used their mobile device to buy a product online at least once since they’ve owned it. Despite this trend, desktop purchases still dominate the ecommerce industry.
Internet Advertising and Sales Statistics
Online ads are already pushing TV commercials away. Targetted, cheaper, more direct – what is not to like?
46. 95% of Google’s revenue comes from online advertising.
Considering what percentage of global internet users use Google Search and other Google services, it should come as no surprise that the company is raking in billions of dollars from online advertising.
Internet ad revenue has been Google’s main source of income for more than half a decade. It is no secret that the company acquired multiple platforms that bring no income or even operate in the negatives. Luckily, Google is available to keep those platforms running in order to try and bring its users to other Google’s services, mostly by supporting them with the ad revenue it receives.
It is estimated that up to 95% of Google’s revenue, which was $95.38 billion in 2017, comes from online advertising.
47. 25% of small businesses invest in online marketing.
(Source: Blue Corona)
According to site stats from October of 2018, a quarter of all small businesses in America have decided to invest in online marketing and make this their primary form of advertising. Whether it’s advertising on Facebook, Instagram, YouTube, or hiring an agency that offers packages of multiple platforms, more and more small business owners are seeing the benefit of presenting their products or services to the internet world.
48. An average internet user sees over 1,700 banner ads in a month.
Global internet traffic statistics show that while surfing the web, the average internet user is served more than 1,700 banner ads per month. According to the numbers, around half of all banner ads are ever viewed. The average clickthrough rate for this type of ad is 0.06%, but the sheer number of internet users is more than enough for advertisers to make a living.
49. Ad-block usage increased by 41% in 2015.
In 2015, the internet audiences’ displeasure with the increased number of ads served was expressed through the increase in adblocker use. The number of users of this type of software grew by 41% during the year, reaching 198 million users worldwide.
Ecommerce is still considerably smaller than brick-and-mortar retail, but the sector expands three times faster.
50. 50% of mobile ad clicks are accidental.
Let’s include a funny entry on the list of stats about the internet:
Around half of all ad clicks on mobile are caused by fat fingers syndrome. For advertisers, and those charging them per click, it matters not if the click was accidental, as it gets registered and included in the click-through statistics at the end of the year anyway.
51. 51% of digital advertising budgets were spent on mobile in 2016.
Advertisers noticed the trend of the internet market switching to mobile a while ago. In fact, more than half of all digital ad budgets were spent on mobile advertising in 2016. Since then, the numbers have increased; according to estimates, today around 75% of advertisers’ budgets are dedicated to mobile marketing.
52. 70% of people express aversion towards mobile ads.
A grim-looking bit of internet stats for online advertisers:
Even though advertisers devote the majority of their budgets to mobile ads, 70% of mobile users say that they dislike mobile ads. Most of the users are, however, willing to go through the inconvenience of seeing a short video or an image if it means that their online entertainment remains free of charge.
53. Native ads are viewed 53% more than banner ads.
Ecommerce stats show that ads that match the look, feel, and function of the website or the app they appear on (also known as native ads) are viewed 53% more times than simple banner ads that pop up on the users’ screen. Users seem to appreciate the effort that is put into creating native ads, as they don’t disrupt the immersion as much. This is probably the main reason why they are so popular.
54. 32% of internet users say they would share a native ad.
Nearly a third of internet users involved in the survey said they’d gladly share a native ad with their friends and family. The percentage of internet users that want to share a banner ad with their close ones is 19%.
55. Global retail ecommerce sales reached $2.8 trillion in 2018.
Here’s are some useful numbers that reveal how much money is spent on the internet.
Back in 2014, global internet sales reached the $1 trillion milestone. Now, just 4 years later, retail ecommerce sales have grown more than twice, reaching $2.8 trillion in 2018. Next year, the numbers are expected to increase by nearly a billion, while in 2021 the global ecommerce sales for websites such as Amazon, eBay, etc., are projected to reach $4.8 trillion.
For comparison, the entire banking industry is estimated to make around $256 billion in 2020.
56. B2B ecommerce sales dwarfed B2C sales in 2017.
Internet statistics for 2017 revealed that out of the total ecommerce traffic, which was close to $10 trillion, more than two-thirds came from B2B online sales. B2B companies, or businesses that sell their services and products mostly to other businesses, made $7.7 trillion last year. B2C companies, or the ones that have regular clients, sold $2.3 trillion worth of products and services during that time.
57. 75% of internet users bought a product online during Q3 2017.
During the last quarter of 2017, ecommerce website statistic reveals that three-quarters of internet users decided to buy a product online. This number is shared across all devices, with PC or laptop being the main choice. 56% of people using a computer made a purchase, while only 53% of mobile buyers and merely 19% of tablet shopped online.
58. 58% of shoppers buy online because of the possibility to buy 24/7.
The main reason why the majority of shoppers decide to buy items online is the convenience that internet shopping offers.
Shopping sites statistics point out that 58% of internet shoppers say that they buy online because of the 24/7 availability of the service. If you decide that you want a mug with a picture of your cat in the middle of the night, there’s nothing to stop you from ordering it right there and then, and have it delivered in less than 24 hours.
59. Comparing prices is another major convenience.
54% of online buyers say that the ability to compare prices on different websites influences heavily their decision to shop online instead of going to an actual store. The average time spent on a website is way shorter than going to a brick-and-mortar shop. Time-saving is the number one priority for 46% of online buyers while avoiding crowds is important to 15% of them.
60. $289.19 is the average amount shoppers spend online during Thanksgiving weekend.
When it comes to spending on holiday gifts, American online shoppers spend close to $300 on average during Thanksgiving weekend. In 2017, the total amount of money spent online between Thanksgiving Day and Cyber Monday was $12.6 billion. Online shoppers typically spend around $160 on Black Friday, most commonly buying electronics. Desktop PC purchases represented 64% of all Black Friday revenue in the US, back in 2016.
61. 18% of all retail ecommerce sales come from the UK.
Internet statistics tell us that the UK is the country with the highest participation rate in total online retail sales. 18% of all ecommerce sales come from this country. The second one on the list is China, with 16.6% of sales, and it is followed by Norway, Finland, South Korea, Denmark, and Germany, all of whom participate in the global online retail sales by more than 10%. The United States holds the 8th spot on the list, contributing to the total online sales with 8.9%. Canada and Japan hold the last two spots on this top 10.
- Magnify Skill
- Internet Live Stats
- Statistics Norway
- USA Today
- Dotspeedtest Blogs
- Huffington Post
- The HealthSite
- Wi-Fi Alliance
- Net MarketSharev
- Stone Temple
- Blue Corona
- Blue Corona