A new study released by the Pew Research Center’s Internet Project reveals that the number of seniors (users over age 65) is increasing significantly. Other key findings include:
- Some 73% of online adults now use a social networking site of some kind. Facebook is the dominant social networking platform in the number of users, but a striking number of users are now diversifying onto other platforms. Some 42% of online adults now use multiple social networking sites. In addition, Instagram users are nearly as likely as Facebook users to check in to the site on a daily basis.
- Fully 71% of online adults now use Facebook, and usage among seniors has increased significantly in the last year. Some 45% of internet users age 65 or older now use Facebook, up from 35% who did so in late 2012. Women are also particularly likely to use Facebook compared with men.
- 42% of online adults use multiple social networking platforms. For those who use only one social networking site, Facebook is typically—though not always—the platform of choice.
- Some 17% of online adults use Instagram, up from 13% in late 2012. Two groups in particular have experienced a notable increase in Instagram usage in the last year. Instagram adoption by internet users ages 18-29 has increased from 28% in late 2012 to 37% in 2013, and adoption by African American internet users has increased from 23% to 34% over the same time period. Instagram was acquired by Facebook in April 2013.
- Some 22% of online adults are LinkedIn users. As a platform geared towards professional networking, its user demographics are unique from the other sites discussed above. Specifically, LinkedIn usage is especially high among people with a college degree or higher, and among those with an annual household income of $75,000 or more. It is also the only social networking site we measured for which usage among 50-64 year olds is higher than usage among those ages 18-29.
- Facebook is by far the most commonly-used social networking platform, and as a result, a significant majority of Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest, and LinkedIn users also use Facebook. At the low end, 83% of LinkedIn users also use Facebook. At the high end, 93% of Instagram users also use Facebook (Instagram’s parent company). About a quarter of Facebook users use each of the other sites.