Social Media Statistics for Australia [2021 & 2022]

3D Illustration of bars and a positive trend line
3D Illustration of bars and a positive trend line

If there’s one thing you can count on with social media in Australia, it’s that you can’t count on anythingThe purchase of Twitter by Elon Musk for AUD$61.3 billion has people talking again about a social media channel that has struggled to find its place in the rapidly changing social media landscape.

As the landmark deal has been approved, now is a good time to do a deep dive on social media statistics in Australia for 2022. If Musk makes good on his promise to take the company private, this could be a last chance to produce a comprehensive report on social media data.

Table of Contents

General Social media statistics Australia

You can divide social media users into two camps – those who use social media for business, especially marketing, and those who use it for recreation or leisure. A complete run-down on global social media marketing statistics is good to know, but for this post we’re narrowing our focus on social media statistics for Australia in 2022 and 2021.

How many social media users are there 2022?

To get started, here are quick Australian social media facts from Statista:

  • 21.45 million social media users in Australia
  • 11.99 million LinkedIn users in Australia
  • 6 million Australians use social media for online shopping
  • 44.5% of Australians use Facebook
  • 7.2 is the average number of social media accounts per internet user in Australia

Social media statistics Australia 2021

One of the problems with reporting social media statistics, in Australia or anywhere else, is there are so many ways to look at the data. One of the more interesting bodies of research has to do with how the Australian audience engages with social media content when it comes to finding news. It was conducted by the News & Media Research Centre at the University of Canberra.

According to the Digital news report: Australia 2021, the most popular social media platforms for general use in Australia in 2021 were: 

  • 67% - Facebook
  • 61% - YouTube
  • 51% - Facebook Messenger
  • 37% - Instagram
  • 29% - WhatsApp
  • 18% - Twitter
  • 16% - LinkedIn
  • 16% - Snapchat
  • 15% - Pinterest
  • 12% - TikTok
  • 11% - Reddit
  • 5% - Telegram
  • 4% - Viber
  • 4% - WeChat

Social media usage statistics Australia

Now let’s evaluate social media usage by examining how Australians use social networking sites when getting their news content. According to Digital news report: Australia 2021, women (49%) are more likely than men (46%) to come across news on social media, but men are more likely to go directly to news websites or apps.

Here are the top social media sites Australians use to get their news:

  • 66% - Facebook
  • 41% - YouTube
  • 18% - Twitter
  • 22% - Facebook Messenger
  • 19% - Instagram
  • 19% - WhatsApp
  • 7% - Snapchat

Tip: Looking for the top hashtags in Australia? Check out our List of the Most Trending Hashtags in Australia.

Facebook statistics Australia

One point made by the research about Australian Facebook statistics is that while many Australians find news content on Facebook, 46% said it tends to be incidental to their main purpose for being there. That’s much higher than the global average of 33% who report the same thing.

In addition, Australians were more concerned about encountering COVID-19 misinformation on Facebook (30%) than any other social network. This concern is shared across the globe, resulting in people using Facebook less for news than in previous years.

A pie chart with a magnifying glass focused on a segment of the data. It's always important to analyze the trends and data around your industry, so in this blog, we dive into the top PR statistics for 2022.

Social media usage statistics by age Australia

The Australian Communications and Media Authority (ACMA) has produced two snapshot reports into the digital lives of younger and older Australians. It’s a treasure-trove of insight into the patterns of consumer usage of communications and media over time. The reliance on social networks accelerated during the COVID-19 pandemic for all Australians, but let’s take a closer look at the youngest and oldest social media user demographics in Australia.

What age group uses social media the most in Australia?

According to ACMA, online activity, including social media, increased considerably more in younger Australians – often referred to as digital natives – than their mature counterparts.

Here are a few stand-out insights about how young people in Australia use social media:

  • Digital natives are more likely than older groups to use social media sites and to use a greater range of them.
  • The overwhelming majority of 18- to 34-year-olds are connected to social networking platforms, with around 85% reporting use of at least one in the previous six months at June 2020, compared to 67% for those over the age of 35.
  • 64% of young people, on average, used five or more social media sites or apps in the previous 6 months, compared to 22% of other Australians.

Social media use by digital natives in Australia

The top social media sites and apps used by Australian young people (18-34 years old) include:

  • 91% Facebook
  • 83% YouTube
  • 81% Instagram
  • 55% WhatsApp
  • 55% Snapchat
  • 31% Reddit
  • 26% TikTok
  • 26% Twitter 

Social media use by older Australians

By contrast, ACMA reports more older people are using social networks to communicate than in previous years. This shift was made largely out of necessity because of COVID-19 restrictions

Top social media sites and apps used by older people (65+ years old) in Australia include:

  • 97% Facebook
  • 58% YouTube
  • 32% WhatsApp
  • 22% Instagram
Illustration of a tablet with a play icon

Top social networking sites Australia

For a straight comparison of social media statistics throughout Australia, Social Media News provides a monthly reporting on active users. This gives you a good idea of the social media reach for each channel. All data shows the number of Unique Australian Visitors (UAVs) to the social network website over the course of a full calendar month. In the case of Facebook, the total figure includes users of desktop, mobile, application and messenger services. (Source: Vivid Social - Social Media Agency. Figures correct as of 31/03/22.)

Social networking sites - Monthly active users Australia

  1. Facebook – 18,000,000 Monthly Active Australian Users (steady)
  2. YouTube – 17,500,000 Unique Australian Visitors (UAVs) per month
  3. WhatsApp – 12,000,000 Active Australian Users 
  4. Instagram – 10,000,000 Monthly Active Australian Users (FB/Instagram data)
  5. LinkedIn – 6,500,000 Monthly Active Australian Users, approx  
  6. Snapchat – 6,400,000 Monthly Active Australian Users (Snapchat data)
  7. WordPress.com – 6,100,000
  8. Twitter – 5,800,000 Monthly Active Australian Users, approx
  9. Tinder – 4,000,000 Australian users (my estimation) 
  10. Tumblr – 3,700,000
  11. WeChat - 2,900,000 Monthly Active Australian Users, approx – (my estimation)
  12. TripAdvisor – 2,800,000
  13. Yelp – 1,500,000
  14. Blogspot- 1,200,000
  15. TikTok – 1,100,000
  16. Hinge – 1,000,000 
  17. Flickr – 450,000
  18. Pinterest – 290,000
  19. Reddit – 110,000
  20. MySpace – 70,000
  21. RenRen – 70,000 Monthly Active Australian Users, approx – (my estimation)
  22. StumbleUpon – 39,000
  23. Weibo – 35,000 Monthly Active Australian Users, approx – (my estimation)
  24. Digg – 10,000
  25. Foursquare/Swarm – 9,000 
  26. Periscope – 9,000
  27. Delicious – 7,000

How many social media users are there in 2022?

If you want the most up-to-date list of social media usage statistics Australia, Social Media News publishes a monthly report to tell you how many Australians are using social networks. It contains their entire archive going all the way back to 2011 so you can track trends.

Bookmark this link so you can easily find how many social media users are there in 2022 and the top social networking sites Australia, by month.

Illustration of the pink Instagram icon with like hearts flying out

Australia social media trust statistics

Social media has taken a beating according to the Edelman Trust Barometer 2022 for Australia. Trust Down Under, Edelman’s Australia Country Report, shows social media is distrusted and trust in it has declined more than any other industry sector.

When asked how many times they need to see information in their social media feed before they believe it, Australian respondents were characteristically sceptical.

  • 8% - automatically assume what they see in their social media feed is true
  • 27% - believe the information if they’ve seen it once or twice in their social media feed
  • 41% - say they will never believe information is true if the only place they see it is in their social media feed.

What’s ahead for social media in Australia?

Research shows Australian social media users in 2022 are charting their own course. For the more than 21 million social media users in Australia, their appetite for social networking is not waning. Companies who want to use social media to influence Australian consumers must ensure the information they share is trustworthy. Australians of all ages are using social media, including older people who might not have used it before the pandemic.

Whether Elon Musk has an impact on Australian Twitter users remains to be seen. One thing is for sure, Australians are not fans of fake news and will expect information on Twitter or any other social media channel to be substantiated in more than one place.

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If you’re interested in using social media to promote your brand, get in touch with Meltwater Australia by filling out the form below. We can help you devise a strategy starting with social listening and encompassing everything from what’s required for social media marketing through to social media analytics tools. You’ll be able to distribute your brand news and earn the trust of Australian consumers.

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