Parent company: Bytedance
Founded: September 2016
CEO: Vanessa Pappas
Headquarters: Culver City, California
689 million (Source)
Last updated: 01/07/21
2 billion (Source)
Last updated: 01/07/21
1 billion+ (Source)
Last updated: 2/11/20
100 million (Source)
Last updated: 01/07/21
$50 billion (Source)
Last updated: 01/07/21
$1 billion (Source)
Last updated: 01/07/21
|Year||Number of Users (In millions)|
The latest (January 2021) TikTok statistics indicate that the social media platform had 689 million monthly active users globally (DataReportal, 2021).
These figures place the popular app as the 7th largest platform, well ahead of others that have been there for a lot longer such as Twitter, Snapchat, and Pinterest.
The 689 million user statistics do not, however, include users from China, as the app operates in the country under a different name.
Douyin, the Chinese version of TikTok boasts of up to 600 million daily active users. This makes both versions of the app have over 1.2 billion daily active users worldwide.
TikTok stats indicate that the platform cloaked its first billion downloads in February 2019, gaining half a billion more in just under 8 months. These figures are nothing short of impressive considering that it was only launched in 2016.
With over 850 million downloads in 2020, and up to 176 million downloads to date (April 2021), TikTok now has a total of over 2.8 billion downloads globally. It is one of the few social media platforms to have had over a billion downloads, such as Facebook.
Most downloaded apps of April 2021 (Sensortower)
It was only in January 2021 that TikTok was beaten in terms of total app downloads by the messaging app Telegram which cloaked in 63 million downloads. TikTok followed closely behind with 62 million downloads during that month.
Most downloaded apps of January 2021 (Sensortower)
TikTok has really hit the nail on the head when it comes to the younger generation. These figures are however changing fast, as the older generation picks up the nitty-gritty of the app.
In 2020, 62% of TikTok users in the US were aged between 10 and 29 (Statista, 2020).
As of March 2021, teenagers accounted for only 25% of the total TikTok users while those between 20 and 29 accounted for 22.4%. This means that only 47.4% of the total users in the US are aged between 10 and 29 (Statista, 2021).
So why is TikTok so popular among the younger generation? Simply put, it is by design. In a way, TikTok creators understood the younger generation in a much better way, and this could be evidenced by the fact that their initial target audience was users aged 18 and below.
Having studied the habits and behaviors from the beginning, the app’s creators understood what exactly the young ones crave. This study gave TikTok the chance to overtake other key players such as Instagram as their most preferred social media platform (marketing charts, 2020).
Only Snapchat remains to be the social media platform with more popularity among US teens.
TikTok offers the young ones a platform to express themselves creatively while sharing videos of themselves dancing, singing, or lip-synching to their favorite or trendy tunes.
53% of TikTok users are male while only 47% of them identify as female.
These numbers have been consistent for long, with only a few dips. However, the trend may change if what we saw recently becomes the new norm.
According to App Ape, male users only accounted for 39% of the video-sharing app’s user base on the Android platform.
Teenage female users accounted for 16.4% of TikTok’s active user accounts in the United States. Female users aged 30 to 39 years were the second largest user group, accounting for 13.8% of the video-sharing app’s user base on the Android platform (App Ape).
TikTok is currently available in 155 countries and in 75 languages (Apptrace, 2021).
While there are many strategies that the parent company (Bytedance) used to penetrate most parts of the world, many experts attribute TikTok’s success in the west to its predecessor Musical.ly and Douyin for its Eastern users.
TikTok did an impressive job trying to increase its Asian followers.
There are currently three other countries that have banned the app including Bangladesh, Indonesia, and China. The ban in India was a result of the ban of other Chinese apps which the government thought was used to spy on its sovereignty.
Bangladesh, Indonesia, and Pakistan all banned the app on various grounds, including the promotion of ‘indecency’ and cyberbullying.
Douyin, which is the Chinese version of TikTok is the only permitted version in mainland China, meaning the global version of TikTok isn’t available within the country.
Besides being a popular app in Asian countries, TikTok has been gradually rising in other parts of the world, especially in Europe.
According to the latest TikTok statistics, countries like Poland and Norway have experienced a surge in the rise of TikTok downloads over the last couple of months.
Countries with the highest growth of TikTok downloads from the Google Play store in February 2021 (Statista, 2021)
75% of all downloaded apps are only accessed once and then entirely forgotten. However, as 90% of all TikTok users access the app on a daily basis, you can be sure that this app is part of the remaining quarter.
In other words, nine out of ten TikTok users open the app multiple times daily
The average time spent on TikTok is 52 minutes per day, with each session taking about 10.85 minutes.
According to a recent study, 68% of TikTok users spend time watching other people’s videos on the platform, while 55% of them upload their own videos (GlobalWebIndex, 2019).
Most users prefer TikTok as a source of entertainment.
However, despite the obvious fact that more people prefer watching than creating content, there are still millions of videos uploaded on the platform daily. This is a clear indicator of the creative freedom that TikTok offers as a social platform.
The average engagement rate on TikTok in 2020 was 17.5%. With an average daily time spent on TikTok standing at 52 minutes, this is by far one of the most engaging social media apps today.
TikTok engagement rate is calculated as the sum of likes, comments, and shares, divided by the number of views.
Thus, the formula can be written as the following:
((Number of likes + number of comments + number of shares) / number of views) * 100%.
TikTok’s audience is far more engaged compared to that of other platforms like Instagram, whose engagement rates only depend on the profile’s audience size.
For instance, TikTok creators with over 500,000 followers on average have a higher engagement rate than those with only 20,000 followers. However, they will have lower engagement rates than creators with only 5,000 followers.
TikTok’s engagement rates in the U.S. alone have increased by 1,533% between 2017 to September 2019.
In comparison, the ER for Facebook has declined by 26% within the same period, as Instagram only inched up by a mere 6%.
Marketers also have to take note of these engagement rates, as a TikTok account with 100,000+ followers has an engagement rate of 5.30% compared to Instagram’s 1.10% and Twitter’s 0.30%.
TikTok influencer engagement rates worldwide in 2020, by follower count (Source: Statista, 2021)
The easiest way to earn money on TikTok is through ‘gifting’ via the app’s virtual currency.
On average, a TikToker with approximately 500k followers with good engagement levels can expect up to $450 in gifts, which they can redeem as cash.
Other ways standard influencer monetization methods on TikTok include:
As of June 2020, it was estimated that TikTok video creator Charlie D’Amelio had annual earnings amounting to 4 million U.S. dollars. Earnings include advertising revenues as well as sponsored content and event appearances.
The highest-earning TikTok star was Addison Rae, with earnings of approximately 5 million U.S. dollars during the measured period.
Here’s what the top-earning TikTok influencers made in 2020:
|User||Earnings (In USD)|
|Addison Rae||5 million|
|Charlie D’Amelio||4 million|
|Dixie D’Amelio||2.9 million|
|Loren Gray||2.6 million|
|Josh Richards||1.5 million|
|Michael Le||1.2 million|
|Spencer X||1.2 million|
According to a report on TikTok stats published by App Ape Lab, TikTok users were on the app more times a day than any other social media platform.
With an average daily active time of 52 minutes, the younger generation tends to spend more time on the app.
The average number of times a Twitter user would open the app would be around 15.
However, a TikToker’s daily activation is more than double that, with TikTok users opening their apps 38 to 55 times a day.
The TikTok algorithm is mainly to blame for this addiction. The system is able to detect the type of content that you prefer watching most of the time and then it customizes the upcoming content to your liking. This makes the user keep staying in the app for longer periods.
Other reasons that could be behind the TikTok addiction are:
As of June 2020, the most popular content categories on the video-sharing social app TikTok all have over one billion views.
The most viewed content category on the app was entertainment content, with this category having accumulated 443.3 billion hashtag views collectively.
The second most viewed content category was dance with a total of 150.3 billion hashtag views (Statista, 2020).
Most popular content categories on TikTok worldwide as of June 2020, by number of hashtag views in billions (Source: Statista)
These numbers have since shot up, and the leading category (entertainment) now plays at around 535 billion views. Creators in this category mainly deal with comedy, special effects, and other non-traditional methods of entertainment.
The three leading creators in the “entertainment” category. (Media Kix, 2020)
The most followed TikToker’s are creators in the “dance” category which is the second most-watched TikTok category at 181 billion views.
Three leading TikTok creators in the “dance” category as of 2020.
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