Facebook is getting older, so is its ‘user-base’

e-Marketer predicts that older users will become the second largest demographic of Facebook users this year

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Highlights

    • Young audience escaping Facebook at faster pace
    • Users are migrating to Snapchat & Instagram
    • The largest growth is expected to be among older users

Facebook seems to have lost its charm of being the old-school favourite in social media hub. The online social networking service still has over a billion subscribers, but young adults are said to be escaping the site faster than predicted.

According to a report from eMarketer, about 2.2 million users between age 13-17 and 4.5 million users from age 18-24 regularly use Facebook in the UK. The report notes that it is 70,000 less than the numbers counted in 2017.

Snapchat is taking away some of Facebook’s audience, however, the popular social network is still parading a slight win-win show with its photo-sharing app & service, Instagram. But while younger users are ditching Facebook, at least the older-gen are playing it loyally and adapting to the trend.

Bill Fisher, UK senior analyst at eMarketer said, “Facebook has a teen problem. This latest forecast indicates that it is more than just a theory. Until now it has been able to rely on platform shifters being hoovered up by Instagram. However, leading the charge for younger audiences is Snapchat. There are now some early signs that younger social network users are being swayed by Snapchat.”

The report further denotes that while Facebook is slowly growing grey hair, its popularity is also increasing among older people. It is believed that older users will become the second-largest demographic of ‘Facebook users’ this year.

Notably, this is not the first time Facebook has been stamped with ‘young users’ problem. Over the past few years, the social networking site’s teen audience has been decreasing substantially.

Perhaps the youth now find other instant-messaging services to be a better way to connect directly with their friends instead of straddling a social account to get a number. A Washington Post report from last year cited that young users found Facebook to be detrimental to their interpersonal relationship.

But while the young group have started bailing out from Facebook the older generation has slowly started adapting the social media platform to connect with their closed-ones.

Richard Broughton, an analyst at Ampere said, “One is that older people tend to be late to the internet party, but adoption tends to find its way through the demographics eventually. And with Facebook’s video and photo experience, it is a platform they want to be on to keep up with the social lives of their kids and grandchildren.”

Facebook, earlier this month announced its quarterly earnings and the report revealed the time spent on network to have declined by an estimated 50 million hours per day. Although, this seems to be an offshoot for the company, it is emphasising on promoting user well-being. Mark has pledged that the site will drive content that has meaningful interactions and makes it worth for the users to spend their time on Facebook.