A report from Inside Facebook has surfaced claiming that Facebook, the world’s biggest social network at the moment according to Alexa, is facing a decline in the number of users particularly in countries where this social network has become part of the culture. The reports claim that there is a significant slow down in the number of users in the United States, Canada, UK, and Russia.
In the month of May, the number of Facebook users in the US has declined by 5%, in Canada by 1.2%, and in UK by 3%. US is down to 149.9 million users, Canada to 16.6 million users, and UK to 29.5 million users. These may seem like large losses but considering that Facebook is valued to have at least 687 million users, these may be considered as a slight slow down.
The deemed reasons for the decline in the number of users are reached saturation points, negative feedbacks, and lack of privacy. At least half of US population is already using Facebook and therefore, there can already be a market saturation. Some believe that this decline is a form of karma for Facebook for being negligent when it comes to privacy issues. There are also seasons when a lot of people are not active on Facebook like for instance, during holidays or scheduled college exams.
Facebook has suffered a lower growth in users for the months of April and May in some countries such as US, Canada, and UK but there was a significant growth on the number of users in highly populated countries like Mexico, Brazil, China, Thailand, Peru, Indonesia, and India among many others. The number of users is still bound to go up if there will a high rate of migration from other social network websites to Facebook according to Inside Facebook.
Inside Facebook claims that their report is based on Facebook’s own statistics measured using its internal advertising metrics tool. There were issues regarding the credibility of the report as Facebook has already claimed that this internal advertising metrics tool is not credible at the best of times since it is still under constant development. According to one Facebook representative, their advertising tool only provides broad estimates and is not designed for tracking the growth of Facebook. It is worth noting as well that there are measurement services, like ComScore and Quantcast, which claim that there is an increase in the number of unique visitors in Facebook.