YouTube is Now Bigger Than Facebook in the U.S.

YouTube is Now Bigger Than Facebook in the U.S.

I was among the first to show that YouTube was the third largest search engine in a presentation entitled, “Getting Found in All the Right Places,” at a SEMNE event on Nov. 7, 2007. And I may have been the first to observe that YouTube was about to pass Yahoo! in expanded searches in a story that was published in Search Engine Watch on July 20, 2008. So, I suspect that the second part of the line, “YouTube has grown to become … the second most-used platform for searching,” is old news.

If anyone wants an update, here’s the U.S. data from comScore qSearch for May 2014: Google had 12.5 billion explicit core searches, YouTube had 4.0 billion search queries, Microsoft had 3.5 billion searches, and Yahoo! had 1.8 billion. I plan to present it on Friday in a new Master Class Webinar at Bulldog Reporter’s PR University.

YouTube is Now Bigger Than Facebook in the U.S.

Get it? Got it? Good. So, that leaves the first part of the line as the new news: YouTube has grown to become the second largest social media site. Now, in some respects, this is old news, too. But, it isn’t mentioned as often. Or, sometimes it’s overlooked altogether. In fact, some sites report that the top 15 most popular social networking websites are Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Pinterest, Google+, Tumblr, Instagram, VK, Flickr, MySpace, Meetup, Tagged,, MeetMe, and ClassMates – in that order.

That’s why the students in the Mini-MBA: Social Media Marketing class that I teach in the Rutgers Business School executive education program are often surprised when I show them slide of the largest social media sites – using data from Compete PRO. Up until this past weekend, YouTube was the second largest social media site, behind only Facebook.

But Compete PRO has just published its June data set – and it contains some really big new news:

YouTube just passed Facebook and is now the largest social media site. had 167,848,349 unique visitors in June 2014, up slightly from 167,737,934 in May. had 166,497,314 unique visitors in June 2014, down slightly from 168,320,857 in May.

YouTube is Now Bigger Than Facebook in the U.S.

Here’s the latest data from Compete PRO on the top 15 social media sites:

  1. had 167,848,349 unique visitors in June 2014.
  2. had 166,497,314 unique visitors that month.
  3. had 50,751,728.
  4. had 49,391,153.
  5. had 48,203,344.
  6. had 46,812,498.
  7. had 42,774,157.
  8. had 40,189,235.
  9. had 31,546,911.
  10. had 25,598,422.
  11. had 12,887,199.
  12. had 12,291,208.
  13. had 11,808,985.
  14. had 7,361,214.
  15. had 5,938,173.

Now, Compete manages one of the largest panels of its kind in the industry, combining the online behaviors and attitudes from 2 million consumers across the United States. Its online panel is comprised of a statistically representative cross-section of consumers who have given permission to have their internet clickstream behaviors and opt-in survey responses analyzed as a new source of marketing research. The Compete panel is several times larger than traditional panels, which means that it’s hard to dismiss the data presented above.

But, please, please! This is supposed to be a happy occasion! Let's not bicker and argue about whose data is better than whose. Instead, let’s quibble about why some industry observers overlook YouTube and other video sharing sites when compiling their lists of the most popular social networking websites.

Isn’t YouTube a social medium? And, if you include Instagram, an online mobile photo-sharing, video-sharing and social networking service, and Flickr, an image hosting and video hosting website, should you add Vimeo, Dailymotion, and Vine to your list, too?

Heck, YouTube has Community Guidelines. You can share YouTube videos on Facebook, Twitter, Google+, Blogger, reddit, tumblr, Pinterest, VK, LinkedIn, StumbleUpon, Odnoklassniki, LiveJournal, and Digg. And the YouTube Creator Playbook for Brands even says: “Don’t limit your purview to YouTube. Many viewers will encounter your videos through social media, other websites and blogs. Cross-channel, device-agnostic campaigns are the key to social success.”

The Playbook adds:

“Be ready to deliver the right message to the right consumer at the right time. Remember:

  • 500 years of YouTube videos watched on Facebook/day.
  • 700 YouTube videos shared on Twitter/minute.”

So, let’s stop treating YouTube like a red-headed stepchild. And let’s stop treating video sharing sites as if they are social outcasts. YouTube has grown to become the largest social media site. And Vimeo, Dailymotion, and Vine aren’t chopped liver, either.

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About the Author -
Greg Jarboe is president and co-founder of SEO-PR, a content marketing agency which provides search engine optimization, online public relations, social media marketing, and video marketing services.  Jarboe is author of "YouTube and Video Marketing: An Hour a Day". He is also a contributor to "Strategic Digital Marketing: Top Digital Experts Share the Formula for Tangible Returns on Your Marketing Investment" by Eric Greenberg and Alexander Kates; "Complete B2B Online Marketing" by William Leake, Lauren Vaccarello, and Maura Ginty; as well as "Enchantment: The Art of Changing Hearts, Minds, and Actions" by Guy Kawasaki. Jarboe is profiled in "Online Marketing Heroes: Interviews with 25 Successful Online Marketing Gurus" by Michael Miller. Jarboe is on the faculty of the Rutgers Center of Management Development as well as Market Motive.  He is also a correspondent for Search Engine Watch as well as the Knowledge Transfer blog. He is also a frequent speaker at industry conferences. View All Posts By -

What do you think? ▼
  • Tara Miller


  • Grant Crowell

    Greg, picking and choosing a select metric is not really a true indicator of "largest social media site." Total unique visitors doesn't account for actual time spent or other key engagement levels

  • SearchBuzz

    True. They prefer to use the hashtags in comments because then they are clickable and can return related results from G+ and YouTube. You could probably use them in the description for Keyword purposes, but that's about it really.

  • Brian D. Hawkins

    I'm not surprised at all Greg. What surprises me is that MySpace gets more traffic than Linkedin, Pinterest or Instagram. What's that all about?

    • wesleymfreudenburg

      Josiah . although Jacqueline `s stori is surprising,
      last week I bought themselves a Chrysler from having made $5060 thiss month
      and-in excess of, 10/k last-month . it's realy the easiest-work I have ever done
      . I started this 4 months ago and pretty much straight away was bringin in at
      least $78 per-hour . why not look here C­a­s­h­f­i­g­.­C­O­M­

  • Frank Schwarz

    I really hope YouTube slows down the "community complaint" system they have (sort of seems like craigslist wild west flagging) so that YT will continue to top every search engine.