Ever since it was launched in June 2011, Google has tried really hard to get its social network to take off by integrating it with all Google services. Now, these efforts seem to be bearing fruit. Google+ surpassed Twitter in number of active users, making itself the second most-popular social network in the world, right behind Facebook.
That data, provided by the market research firm Global Web Index, places Facebook in first place on the list with 700 million active users, followed by Google+ with 353 million active users. In third place is YouTube, while Twitter takes fourth. These last two each have approximately 250 million active users.
Nonetheless, and even though it’s considered a reliable source, there are some who question Global Web Index and its definition of “active user.” For example, when it comes to Google+, they consider an active user anyone who has clicked the +1 button, or who has published at least one post. However, it doesn’t provide much more detail than this for its definition.
The difference between active users and registered users is actually very important. For example, Facebook has around 900 million registered account; however, the amount of active users – those who actually use the social network – brings that number down to 700 million users.
Active usership has been a problem for Google+ since the beginning. Once it was launched in 2011, the social network began to quickly gain registered users, but user activity within the network was always low.
What is clear is that there is such a large number of registered account on Google + because anyone who uses the Internet and registers for any Google service, such as Gmail, YouTube, and others, automatically creates a Google+ account. This strategy has produced results for Google, but registered accounts isn’t the same thing as active users. Now, according to the data from Global Web Index, Google+ is starting to see more activity, despite which, based on intuition, you could say that there is much more user activity on Twitter than there is on Google+. But, how activity on a social network is measured is an entirely different topic.