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Using Hashtags On Social Media

Australia’s most popular social media sites 2018

(An updated post for Australia’s most popular social media sites in 2019 can be found here.)

You may have a love-hate relationship with your own social networks, but Australians are still addicted to social media in growing numbers.

2017 was a landmark year for all the major platforms, with some getting a surprise boost in popularity and others failing to keep up with changing tastes. Find out which sites you should be prioritising in your social media marketing campaigns as we catch up with Australia’s favourite social networks in 2018.

How many Aussies are on social media?

According to the latest Sensis Social Media Report, 79% of Australians now use social media – up a full 10 points from 69% in 2016. Broken down be age group, this includes:

  • 99% of adults aged 18-29
  • 96% of adults in their 30s
  • 86% of adults in their 40s

The average Australian owns three internet-enabled devices, though 81% prefer to access social media on their smartphones. 84% of people say they use the internet every day.

Pertinently for businesses, 64% of users say they trust brands that engage with their customers on social media (up from 52% last year). People are turned off by brands that have irrelevant or unappealing content, or that bombard their followers with too many ads.


Top 10 social networks in Australia

Statistics compiled by for December 2017. Stats and research provided by the Vivid Social – Social Media Agency. Figures correct as of 31/12/17.

1. Facebook




15,000,000 unique monthly visitors

Falling from 17 million users in the middle of last year, Facebook is still far and away the most popular social network in Australia. 60% of the population has a Facebook account and half of Australians check the site every day.

According to Sensis, 95% of Australians who use social media sites have an active account on Facebook (97% female vs. 91% male). It’s also used by 90% of businesses. If you only manage one social profile for your brand, it should be on Facebook.

See our social media comparison to find out what local Newcastle banks are doing right and wrong on Facebook.


2. YouTube


YouTube logo


15,000,000 monthly visitors

While they might not check it quite so obsessively as Facebook, YouTube now gets as many unique visits a month, with around 15 million Australians watching at least one video on the site (over half the population).

Videos are one of the most engaging types of content, holding the audience’s attention for longer than text or images. However, only 11% of SMBs and 17% of large businesses have a presence on YouTube.

See how CSR uses YouTube videos as part of their content marketing activities.


3. Instagram


Instagram logo


9,000,000 monthly active visitors

Australia’s favourite image-sharing site is also its fastest growing social network, almost doubling its user base from this time last year. Its popularity with adults is roughly inverse to age, with around 70% of under-30s having an account.

Curiously, Instagram is almost twice as popular with medium-sized organisations (39%) as small (19%) or large (20%) businesses.

If you’re on Instagram or you need to source images for your business blog, read our guide to how to use images legally.





5,700,000 monthly visitors

Australia’s favourite CMS platform continues to grow in popularity with businesses and civilian bloggers alike. Its ease of use, extensive customisation and the fact that it can host your business website for free are all points in its favour.

Find out how to get started with a WordPress blog.


5. WhatsApp




5,000,000 active users

Another grower that gained almost two million users through 2017, this versatile instant messenger service is used by over a billion people worldwide.

Facebook bought WhatsApp for a record $22 billion in 2014, but more people still use the company’s own Facebook Messenger (81% to 18%).


6. LinkedIn



4,200,000 monthly visitors

The Facebook for professionals, LinkedIn is most popular with men (22% vs. 14% of women), the 50-64 age bracket (25%) and Queenslanders (22%), make of that what you will.

82% of large firms are active on LinkedIn, which falls to 41% of medium and 35% of small companies. It’s still the second most popular social media site for businesses of all sizes after Facebook.

Read more about how Australian brands use social media.


7. Snapchat




4,000,000 daily visitors

The social success story of 2016, Snapchat’s Australian user base has remained stable over the past year, but it’s still noteworthy that four million people use the app every day (one in six people).

The ephemeral image and video sharing app appeals mostly to young people under 30 (77% of users), who use it to share visual content that disintegrates shortly after viewing.


8. Tumblr


Tumblr logo

3,800,000 monthly visitors

Tumblr is still popular with many younger Aussies, but the micro-blogging site continues to fall down the ranks and lose relevance. With many users jumping ship in 2015, today it’s only visited by 11% of internet users.

Many of the most popular Tumblrs revolve around comics, reaction gifs and film quotes, but some game creators, TV stations and newspapers have had success there too.


9. Twitter


Twitter logo


3,000,000 monthly active users

Twitter continues to be less popular locally than globally, even following a revamp that saw tweet lengths double and a greater emphasis on visual content. The majority of Twitter users are in the 18-29 age group (70%).

Formerly the social platform with the highest drop-off rate, it seems most dissatisfied users left in 2016 as Facebook has now taken pride of place with a 15% decline since last year (Twitter at 11%).

Read our hashtag hacks for Twitter and other platforms.


10. Tinder


Tinder logo

3,000,000 monthly visitors

Australia’s top dating app has grown by around a million users over the past year, which was also the year it introduced its premium paid services for more discerning singles.

Tinder’s ruthless swipe function inspired LinkedIn to create a similar app for professional networking, but Tinder itself isn’t a network that lends itself to business use.

Find out how to look after your customers on social media.


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