Facebook suffered an audience loss of 1.86 percent in December, according to social media traffic monitors, SocialBakers, causing experts to claim the site has reached saturation point in the UK.
Despite remaining the UK’s largest social networking service, with over 33 million British visitors, or 53 per cent of the market share, the UK was the only one of Facebook’s 10 busiest territories to see a seasonal fall, with 600,000 Brits shunning the Twitter rival in December.
The sheer number of Britain’s Facebook users places us among the site’s most developed markets, second only to the United States where its 169 million users equate to 54 per cent market penetration, eclipsing the likes of Bibo, MySpace and Pinterest.
Whilst this seasonal usage drop is a plight many websites face as users attempt to unplug from the internet and enjoy a relaxing holiday period, Facebook’s growth curve has been slowing for several years, sparking concern for the site’s future.
Social networking experts expected the site to reach saturation point at around 50 per cent market share, and are using the data from SocialBakers as supporting evidence.
SocialBakers chief executive Jan Rezab agrees that Britain has probably reached saturation point, but believes the December data is not evidence that people are leaving Facebook altogether.
Rezab also added that 15 per cent of Britain’s population are under 13 years old and therefore technically not allowed to join the site, and 16.5 per cent are over-65, meaning the UK will not see a huge growth in users unless pre-teens are allowed to join the site.
The December dip is also hard to analyse due to the rapid adoption of social media in recent years making it difficult to draw historical comparisons.