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10 interesting facts from The Webcertain Global Search And Social Report


We are thrilled to announce that we have just published The Webcertain Global Search And Social Report on our Know-How platform!

This 139-page guide provides the most up-to-date information about search engine and social media usage in 20 different countries, as well as stats on internet penetration, device usage and the most important things to consider when doing digital marketing in each country.

This blog post will go through our top 10 picks of what we think are our most interesting and unexpected facts from the report. If you want to learn even more, you can read the full report (behind a subscription wall) for free here!

Fact 1: India is changing, but progress is still needed

The Indian online landscape is changing rapidly. Currently most content is in English, but by 2021 Hindi is expected to overtake English to become the most common online language. In terms of who has access to the internet, however, progress still needs to be made. Urban areas are much better connected than rural areas, and the vast majority of Indians online are male.

Fact 2: Social media habits in Japan may surprise you

The top two social platforms in Japan are YouTube and Twitter. Facebook comes in at third place, but the way Japanese people use it is different from most other countries. Facebook is seen as a professional social platform in the country, and is mainly used for job hunting and professional networking.

Fact 3: Brazilians are very privacy-conscious

84% of Brazilian internet users believe that data privacy and protection are very important. And this sentiment is more than just words, Brazilians are taking action too; 51% delete cookies and 40% use ad blockers.


Fact 4: Italy may present unexpected challenges

The challenges are two-fold. First of all, be aware that internet speeds in Italy are slower than the European average, so having a lightweight website is a must. Also, if your products fall in categories such as fashion, food, furniture, interior design and cars, you should know that competition may be very fierce from local brands, as Italians prefer to buy “Made in Italy” for these product categories.

Fact 5: The top platforms are totally different in Russia

The Russian internet landscape is completely unlike anywhere else in the world. Looking at search engines, we see names like Yandex and mail.ru. Looking at social media, two of the big names are VK and Odnoklassniki. And when Russians think of engaging in a bit of cross-border online shopping, they head to Chinese websites like AliExpress.ru.

Fact 6: Social media is heavily censored in Turkey

Online censorship is a big issue in Turkey. Twitter transparency reports have shown that, year after year, the Turkish government has often made as many, or more, content removal requests than all other countries combined.

Fact 7: Mobile is key to success in South Korean e-commerce

In 2017, purchases made on mobile accounted for 61% of all e-commerce sales in South Korea. Fashion and beauty products were the most popular online purchases, followed by electronics, food and personal care products.

Fact 8: Facebook users in Spain belong to a narrow age demographic

Facebook has a penetration rate of 69% in Spain. However, users are not split equally across all demographics. 52% of users are female and 48% are male, and the majority of users are aged between 25 and 44.

Fact 9: German online shoppers don’t like to share their bank details

When Germans buy online, they prefer to pay on-account through an electronic direct debit payment method (ELV). This is the preferred payment method of 41% of German online shoppers, as it is deemed safer than sharing bank details.

Fact 10: The UK is the biggest e-commerce market in Europe

That’s right, it’s the Brits who top the European table when it comes to online shopping. Clothes and sports goods are the most common items that British shoppers buy online, followed by household goods and holiday accommodation.

We hope this has given you a useful introduction to the world of search engines, social media and digital marketing around the world. To read the full 139-page report covering all 20 countries, go here!

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Elin Box

Content Marketing Manager at Webcertain
Elin is a Content Marketing Manager at Webcertain. She is responsible for Webcertain’s Self-learning platform, producing in-depth guides on a range of international digital marketing topics. She also helps run the Webcertain blog and is the writer of the Webcertain search and social report, an annual report summarising digital marketing best practices in over 50 countries. She is passionate about educating and empowering people to make the best decisions for their business and is proud to help share Webcertain’s wealth of digital marketing knowledge with the world. Elin is from the UK.

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