Social Media Growth Worldwide – 2 Billion Users By 2016, Led By India [STATS]

While social media growth around the world has slowed, certainly in the U.S. and Western Europe, it’s far from stopped, with the huge opportunity to recruit new users in less-developed markets ensuring that the social networking uptick will continue for years to come.

Indeed, some 200 million users globally were added in the past 12 months, with 1.61 billion people now active in social media. This is expected to advance to 1.82 billion next year before breaching the 2 billion mark in 2016.

This data comes courtesy of eMarketer, who forecast consistent, albeit slowing growth in social media usage worldwide over the next 5 years.

While the user penetration rate in leading countries such as the U.S., UK and Japan won’t see significant gains by 2017, the huge populations of India, Indonesia and Mexico, and the social media growth rates expected therein, should more than offset the slowdown elsewhere.

Doing the math, India is tipped to have a 17.2 percent social networking penetration rate within four years – against its current population figures, that’s 212 million users, up from about 70 million now.

(Source: eMarketer. India flag image via Shutterstock.)