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The essential companion for international marketers: Search and social media report for 38 countries

The Webcertain Global Search and Social Report 2014 Q2 Ever spent a great deal of time looking for up-to-date, but often elusive, statistics on the state of digital across a myriad of global markets, only to close down your browser empty-handed and disappointed wishing there was a better way?

If you are working in international online marketing, chances are you have. And the good news is that there is, in fact, a way to alleviate the frustration you may have been experiencing.

From fresh internet population statistics (July 2014 estimates) to the most recent social media user numbers and search engine market shares for 38 countries worldwide, the Webcertain Global Search and Social Report Q2 2014 provides the savvy but busy international online marketer with a highly useful, all-in-one document that makes obtaining relevant, current and actionable insights into the world’s most valuable online markets a breeze.

At the end of the day, you should not be spending your precious time sifting through one Google SERP after the other in hopes that you will finally catch onto something useful; you should be spending it making the readily available data work to your advantage and to grow and improve your international digital footprint.

Below are 7 highlights from our Q2 2014 update, which you can grab a free copy of here.

1. Global internet penetration crosses the 40% mark

Global Internet Penetration 2014 Although global adoption of the internet still has a long way to go before reaching maturity, 4 out of every 10 people on the planet are now online. This represents a significant increase on the 2.4 billion we reported back in 2013.

2. Facebook’s mobile audience surges above a puzzling 1 billion

Facebook-Best You know what is cooler than a million mobile users? A billion!

The world’s preeminent social leader has now crossed the staggering one billion mobile monthly active user mark. And Facebook’s emergence into a platform that is predominantly mobile certainly seems to be recognised by advertisers, with mobile ad revenue now contributing nearly 60% of Facebook’s total ad revenue – nothing short of impressive considering that the channel contributed a flat zero only two years ago.

3. Baidu prevents further search share losses in China

Baidu v Qihoo China The seemingly endless climb of Qihoo’s 360 Search (so.com) in China, and the crumbling market share of search leader Baidu as a result, appear to have reached a point of stagnation. With 360 Search capturing 25% of the Chinese search market in May 2014 (same as the figure we reported back in February), the company’s hugely ambitious and aggressive efforts to gain further ground at the expense of Baidu (58.3% share) have not paid off over the last quarter – at least from a search share perspective.

4. Instagram now third largest social network in the US; very close to overtaking Twitter in second place

Instagram now third largest social network in the US Little is more telling of the rise of “the visual web” than the spectacular growth of social networks like Instagram, Pinterest and Tumblr, with these platforms quickly evolving from niche to mainstream in many internet markets around the world. Instagram, for example, now has 61.5 million monthly active users in the US, according to comScore, making it the third largest social network and trailing Twitter in second place by a mere 300K users.

5. India’s internet population is growing at break-neck speed

India's internet population skyrockets Whilst it is fair to say that India has been off to a very slow start in terms of adopting the internet, web uptake has truly caught fire in the second most populous country on the planet. With a July 2014 estimate placing India’s internet population at 243.2 million – up from 151.1 million in the previous edition of our Search and Social Report – it will not be long before India surpasses the US as the world’s second largest internet market by user count. Additionally, with internet penetration still sitting below 20% of the population, India is poised for rapid growth for years to come.

6. Big potential for advertisers targeting non-US Twitter users

Twitter International Advertisers Opportunity Twitter’s number of monthly active users now stands at 255 million, more than three quarters of whom are based outside of the US. But despite the growing size of Twitter’s non-US audience, international revenue makes up a mere 28% of the website’s total revenue, in turn highlighting significant opportunities for advertisers targeting Twitter users outside of the competitive US

7. Yahoo Japan or Google?

Whilst Yahoo Japan (53%), according to one source, still has an edge on Google (40%) in Japan, data from StatCounter places Google at a 61% share, notably ahead of Yahoo Japan’s 35%. Whichever is the case remains unknown, but bear in mind that Yahoo Japan has used Google to power its search results since July 2010. Additionally, due to these conflicting statistics, best practice is to run PPC campaigns on both engines and subsequently measure performance in order to get a more accurate view of how to prioritise your Japanese search budget.

The Webcertain Global Search and Social Report Q2 2014 - Download

Image credits
Flickr (Twitter), Marek.Sotak
Flickr (Facebook), mkhmarketing
Flickr (India), Tiberio Frascari
Flickr (China), Marianna

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Immanuel Simonsen

Research Manager at Webcertain
As the Research Manager of multilingual web marketing agency Webcertain, Immanuel heads up the company’s global market research activities and large content marketing projects. He is the author of several reports and guides, including ‘The Essential Guide to Rel-Alternate-Hreflang’ and ‘The Webcertain Global Search and Social Report 2013’. Apart from being a tutor at the International Marketing School -- teaching online marketing professionals on business opportunities around the globe -- Immanuel is a regular speaker at the International Search Summit, a leading event series dedicated to multilingual search and social media marketing.

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