December Data on Facebook’s US Growth by Age and Gender: Beyond 100 Million

Facebook has been steadily climbing towards 100 million monthly active users (MAU) in the United States, and it finally reached the milestone late this past month, according to the self-reported data in its advertising tool.

Here’s a closer look at how those numbers break down by age and gender. Be sure to check out the caveats for these numbers at the end of the article — the short of it is that you should take all of these numbers as estimates.

Overall, growth appears to have continued at around the same rate as before: Nearly 5 million users joined the site in December, pushing the total from 98.1 million MAU to nearly 103 million MAU. The previous two months saw increases of around 4 million apiece.

Women, especially younger women, continue to comprise the single largest demographic groups within the US. In total, women constitute over 56% of the overall Facebook population — a continuation of a long-time trend.

Younger users saw the biggest numerical increases in December and the 26-34 range saw the largest overall increase, adding 839,000 new MAU, most of whom were female. Earlier last year, we were seeing stronger relative growth in older demographics. Maybe Facebook is facing challenges retaining older users?

In terms of growth rates, younger people and older men saw the fastest growth, as you can see below, with women over 55 not joining the site as fast as they had been earlier last year. In December, men over 55 on Facebook grew over twice as fast as women over 55.

As we enter 2010, only 40% of Facebook users are under the age of 25 – 60% are 26 or older, and nearly 20% are 45 are older. While it started as a site for students in a few colleges, American use of Facebook today is very intergenerational.

Note that the total number of users in a given age group is higher than the combined number of males and females within it, and for a couple reasons. One is that not every user designates their gender on Facebook, either by choice or because they forgot to. Another reason is that overall demographic numbers are estimates.

And now for the caveats, as there are significant irregularities in this data. Facebook’s advertising tool typically reports traffic numbers around a month later than what the company sees internally, judging from what we have observed in the past. And, repeated sampling of any demographic within a single day will typically show a few variations for the numbers. For example, when we took a sample from the advertising tool on January 1 to compare against our sample in early December, we saw the following results for the total number of MAU in the US: nearly 103 million but also 99 and nearly 104 million. Problematically, these estimates appear to differ whenever one sorts the advertising tool for a specific demographic, meaning we don’t have a good window into whether or not each demographic is high or low. The best we can do, given the irregularities in the data, is to look at overall trends. So, don’t assume any of these numbers are facts, but rather loose estimates that are better than nothing.

Facebook Marketing

Mediabistro Event

Facebook Marketing

Starting January 13, work with the group marketing manager of social media at Microsoft/BingAds to grow your business on Facebook! In this course, you’ll learn how to set up your company page, understand Facebook best practices, and execute a monthly content strategy. Register now!


Leave a Reply

20 Responses to “December Data on Facebook’s US Growth by Age and Gender: Beyond 100 Million”

  1. Sampio Rivas says:
    good marketing all producs for home office busine

  2. Irene Koehler says:

    Interesting to see the “estimated” statistics on growth over the last month. I can’t help but wonder if the time of year might be a factor. December can be a particularly busy time for many of those with families (i.e., the “older” users); perhaps making spending time online less of a priority. Just a thought. I suppose the next few months will tell.

  3. Sampio Rivas says:

  4. Sampio Rivas says:

    thes product on the market

  5. Georgiana Bloom says:

    Is there a way to sort users by race/ethnicity or is gathering such data impossible and not p/c?

  6. Dana says:

    I am waiting for Facebook to come up with a way to measure the rate of tweens and kids joining up. They do, you know – by the thousands every day. We have no way of knowing how many they are, because they have to lie about their age in order to join.

  7. failbook says:

    Yeah, it’s called spams and people with more than one account.

  8. Problems and their scale :: Björn Klose says:

    [...] activity remains fairly predictable in more regular cases (not talking about FarmVille or Facebook here). Take 1: Say you want to fix the education system? Just look at the numbers on the school [...]

  9. Honest to Business: Five Myths About Social Media says:

    [...] sites are only for the young. As of January 2010, only 40% of Facebook’s users are under 26. As of April, nearly 40% are over 35. While the learning curve may be steeper for adults less [...]

  10. Agent For Change » Are we due for a social media backlash? says:

    [...] and that the highly prized Millennial demographic is even starting to be eclipsed on Facebook by older users. Maybe the younger users are already beginning to sense that these sites are becoming oversaturated [...]

  11. Understand The Facebook Demographic To Create More Targeted Campaigns | The RealeFlix Mix says:

    [...] Inside Facebook, which I really consider as the unofficially official Facebook blog, posted a variety of demographical profiles on the types of people that are using Facebook during it’s continuous surges in growth.  While these figures were last updated in January, they still provide some very solid information on what you can expect from people using Facebook.  Have a look at the graphs below to see what I mean. [...]

  12. Your Assumptions Are Killing Your Blog - Blogging Teacher says:

    [...] 45-65, and males aged 55-65 were one of the fastest growing demographics, according to the website Inside Facebook.  And it doesn’t take a big percentage of 500 million active users to add up to a big [...]

  13. Social Networking: Do it for Manchester, Do it for You! | goodgood manchester says:

    [...] the United States, Facebook has over 100 million monthly active users and Twitter has over 27 million [...]

  14. Digital Marketing, Online publishing, Mobile Marketing, Online Videos, Search Engine Marketing, Email Marketing - Voxi Media says:

    [...] to the December Data On Facebook users, 37% of Facebook’s user base is between the ages of 35 and 65 in the US alone.  Dead [...]

  15. Why Facebook is Making Marketers Stupid | Point Oh! says:

    [...] thousand monthly visitors to and roughly 12 million Facebook fans.  According to the most recent data I can find, about 20% of Facebook users are active on the monthly basis, which is pretty high [...]

  16. Old Classics Hit Facebook as Casual Games says:

    [...] again.However, we do not understand how this will benefit players right now. Considering that most Facebook users are in the 18-25 age bracket and that these games have a target audience of elementary to mid-school students, it is quite odd [...]

  17. PK-12 e-Book Provider Tumblebooks Launches Facebook App | Ed Reach says:

    [...] so, since 13 is the official age at which a person is allowed to create their own Facebook account. Stats from January of 2010 show that 13-17 year olds made up about 11% of the 103 million Facebook users in the [...]

  18. What is RENN (Renren Inc.) « Think Q says:

    [...] successfully expanded its user group out of Harvard yard and colleges while major actives users are still under 25. Facebook covers the whole world and Renren can only get new users within China and overseas [...]

  19. Research 2011 Summer · 소셜네트워크 및 관련 서비스 소스 조사(김종훈) says:

    [...]… (페이스북의 growth rate, gender 도표, 그래프) [...]

  20. December Data on Facebook’s US Growth by Age and Gender: Beyond 100 Million | susanbeebe posterous import says:

    [...] December Data on Facebook’s US Growth by Age and Gender: Beyond 100 Million [...]

Get the latest news in your inbox
interested in advertising with inside facebook?

Social Media Jobs
of the Day

Assistant Editor

8 Inc.
New York, NY

Copywriter & Editor

Santa Monica, CA

Director of Marketing & Communications

Neumans' Kitchen
New York, NY

Social Community Manager

Tallahassee, FL

Editorial Director

Phoenix House
New York, NY

Featured Company

Join leading companies like this one and recruit from the nation's top media job seekers on the Mediabistro Job Board. Every job post comes with our satisfaction guarantee. Learn More

Our Sponsors

Mediabistro A division of Prometheus Global Media home | site map | advertising/sponsorships | careers | contact us | help courses | browse jobs | freelancers | content | member benefits | reprints & permissions terms of use | privacy policy Copyright © 2014 Mediabistro Inc. call (212) 389-2000 or email us