23 Essential TikTok Stats Marketers Need To Know In 2021

TikTok statistics help marketers put things in perspective. How explosive is the app's growth? Is TikTok really where all the cool kids hang out? Have Instagram Reels hurt TikTok's numbers?

The short answer to these questions is generally fair and not real.

However, the long answers can help you get the most out of your TikTok marketing strategy. Or, you may decide that not enough of your audience is using the platform to make it worth it.

Use these TikTok stats to find out where and how users are using TikTok, what they expect from brands, which ad formats are performing best, and more.

Bonus: Want to know how a viral social video creator makes multi-million dollar sales? Download the free guide now.

General TikTok statistics

1. TikTok has been downloaded more than 2 billion times

According to the company's court records, TikTok reached its 2 billion global download milestone in August 2020. This isn't the only download milestone the company has passed in the past year. TikTok was also the most downloaded app in 2020.

Source: Hootsuite Digital 2021 report

2. TikTok is the 7th most used social network

TikTok Statistics: Chart of the most used social platforms in the world

Source: Hootsuite Digital 2021 report

With 689 million active users worldwide as of January 2021, TikTok is the seventh most popular social network in the world. Facebook, YouTube, WhatsApp, Messenger, Instagram and WeChat outperform the app with more than a billion users each.

Here is a context for this statistic.

Global user statistics are never clear-cut, and TikTok's user base has been on the geopolitical chopping block for the past few years. First, TikTok is not available in China. Instead, its sister app Douyin, a separate platform, offers a similar app experience for a base of 600 million daily active users. Together, these two apps move up to fifth place ahead of Instagram and WeChat and not far behind Messenger.

In June 2020, TikTok was banned in India, the second largest country, at the height of its popularity. At that point, TikTok was well on its way to reaching 120 million users. This put the app ahead of Instagram, Snapchat and other platforms in the country.

Pakistan recently lifted its second ban on TikTok. The app was also banned in Armenia, Bangladesh and Indonesia, narrowly avoided a ban in the US, and was withdrawn from Hong Kong last year.

3. TikTok is now available in more than 200 countries

Despite these bans, the TikTok network grew in 2020. Last year around 50 countries were added to TikTok's service map.

4. TikTok and "Tik Tok" together are the third most popular search query on YouTube

TikTok and Tik Tok are the third most popular search terms on YouTube in 2020

Source: Hootsuite Digital 2021 report

Just as TikTok statistics don't paint a complete picture without douyin, search query statistics aren't complete without spelling variations. Together, TikTok and "Tik Tok" are the third most popular search team on YouTube after "song" and "songs". Imagine adding TikTik and “Tik Tik” to the mix.

5. With an estimated rating of $ 100 billion, TikTok owner Bytedance is the world's most valuable startup

TikTok's parent company Bytedance is reportedly valued at $ 100 billion. In 2019, multinational Uber usurped its long-standing position as the world's most valuable start-up valued at $ 75 billion.

6. No market prefers TikTok as their favorite app

In a survey of 180,852 Internet conducted by GlobalWebIndex in 2020, TikTok was not rated as a preferred service in any of the 47 countries surveyed.

WhatsApp was chosen as the preferred app in 22 countries, followed by Facebook, which was preferred in 18 countries. Line, VK, Instagram, KakaoTalk and WeChat were also on the list.

In China, 15% of respondents rated Douyin as their favorite app, far behind WeChat, which was chosen by 49%.

7. Received YouTube shorts 3.5 billion views a day

It's always a good idea to keep an eye on the competition. Especially when the competition keeps an eye on TikTok and publishes functions that are “inspired” by the app.

YouTube may not pose an "existential threat" to TikTok, but with 2.2 billion monthly active users, the increasing popularity of shorts on the platform could make an impact. As did Instagram's Reels feature, which debuted in India shortly after TikTok was banned. In November, Snapchat also launched a TikTok-like feed called Spotlight.

At the moment, Instagram wasn't a major threat, but that could change with the upcoming launch of a vertical Instagram Stories feed.

TikTok user statistics

8. TikTok almost has 100 million monthly active users in the United States

TikTok first published statistics on US users in a lawsuit against the US government last year.

As of June 2020, 91.9 million Americans are using TikTok every month, and 50 million are on the app every day, according to submissions. Since the app's US debut in 2018, its user base has grown rapidly, increasing by 800% between January 2018 and June 2020.

9. 89% of Americans recognize the TikTok brand

Research by Morning Consult has shown that awareness of the TikTok brand increased by 12% between January and June 2020.

10. In the US, the vast majority of TikTok users are under 30 years of age

Research published in April by the Pew Research Center shows that 48% of adults in the US between the ages of 18 and 29 use TikTok. In the age group of 30 to 49 year olds, the number drops to 20%, for 50 to 64 year olds to 14% and for those over 65 to 4%.

When using online platforms, apps vary depending on the demographic group

Source: Pew Research Center

11. 25% of Gen Zers in the US said they would be more likely to use TikTok under a ban

Ah, smells of youthful spirit.

Last summer, a public survey by Morning Consult found that one in four US Gen Zers were more likely to use TikTok after learning of the potential ban. Only 9% of the Gen Zers surveyed said they were less likely to use the app.

1 in 4 Generation Z adults more inclined to use TikTok after learning of a possible US ban

Source: Morning Consult

TikTok usage statistics

12. Android users spend an average of 13.3 hours per month with the app

Research from AppAnnie found that TikTok users with Android devices spend an average of 13.3 hours per month streaming the app.

This puts TikTok in fourth place among the social media apps behind Facebook, WhatsApp and Instagram in terms of the cumulative time for using the app.

Note: While Hootsuite considers YouTube a social platform, it was included in the video streaming category of this survey.

Top social and video streaming apps by time spent

Source: Hootsuite Digital 2021 report

13. The majority of people use TikTok to find funny / entertaining content

When asked in the GlobalWebIndex 2020 survey how they mainly use TikTok, the majority of respondents replied, "To find funny / entertaining content."

Posting / sharing content is the second most common behavior and keeping messages up is the third most common. By comparison, posting content was the most common use for Instagram and Snapchat. It can therefore be justified to conclude that entertainment value is TikTok's main selling point, especially in terms of consumption.

Other social sites that people can find funny / entertaining content on are Instagram, Pinterest, Reddit, Twitter, and Snapchat. However, TikTok and Reddit were the only apps that put this use case first.

14. Posts tagged #BlackLivesMatter have more than 26.1 billion Views

Like Twitter and Instagram, TikTok has become a medium for social and political activism. Support for racial justice was stepped up last summer in response to the murder of George Floyd by a police officer. As of August 16, 2020, posts tagged #BlackLivesMatter had been viewed 20.3 billion times.

TikTok cited this data in a lawsuit against the US government as evidence of the app's social utility. However, in May the app was accused of suppressing #BlackLivesMatter content. In a statement, Vanessa Pappas, CEO of TikTok, apologized and said that a technical error was the main cause of the suspicion.

TikTok's relationship with black creators has already been questioned. Despite being a driving force behind trends on the platform, there have been reports that black influencers receive disproportionate recognition and compensation and are routinely appropriated by white peers.

To address this inequality, the company launched the TikTok for Black Creatives incubator program in January 2020.

fifteen. 176 different songs More than 1 billion video views in 2020

Music drives TikTok. Many songs play more on the app than anywhere else, including Spotify. Just ask Drake, whose TikTok-made Tootsie Slide garnered a billion views in just three days. The top song on Spotify in 2020 had a total of 1.6 billion streams. It was released in 2019.

Old tracks find new life on TikTok too. Fleetwood Mac's 1997 hit "Dreams" returned to the Billboard charts, tripling sales after a video with the song went viral.

@ 420doggface208

♬ Dreams (2004 Remaster) – Fleetwood Mac

16. Deserved Ocean Spray 15 billion Media impressions in less than a month

TikTok is still a wild west for brands. Case and point: Ocean Spray, a 90-year-old beverage company that generated 15 billion media impressions on TikTok in a month without doing anything.

The juice brand also saw a decline in sales after TikTok inventor Nathan Apodaca (@ 420doggface208) featured the cran raspberry drink in the now famous video of his skateboard commute to work.

Ocean Spray interest over time

Source: Google Trends, "Ocean Spray"

While Ocean Spray wasn't behind the video, the brand's surge in reach, sales, and other metrics showed what potential brands could be reached with the app. The power of TikTok viral moments has led companies like Walmart and Dunkin Donuts to encourage employees to post videos while they work.

17. With 9.8 billion #AltTikTok is one of the app's top niche communities

TikTok's most recent year-end report sheds light on the niche communities that started in 2020. At the top of the list is #AltTikTok, which Bustle reporter Kaitlyn Wylde describes as the “artistic side of the cafeteria”.

@ Palmparadisee

stay a while! 🧸🌴 #fyp シ #alttiktok #vibes #hoodalt @ grizz.cll

♬ Gross 69 used this – 𖤐 Dirt 𖤐

Also on TikTok's "Biggest Little Communities" list are #WitchTok, #DracoTok, #CottageCore, #RugTikTok, #ArtTikTok and #PlantTikTok. So basically: artistic, funny, homely stuff: you love to see it.

TikTok for business statistics

18. TikTok is the second largest consumer spending app

Data collected by AppAnnie in iOS and Google Play stores shows that TikTok only stands behind Tinder when it comes to how much consumers are spending. TikTok offers more than just YouTube, Disney +, Tencent Video and Netflix.

Mobile App Rankings: Consumer Spending

Source: Hootsuite Digital 2021 report

19th 63% of TikTok ads with the highest click-through rate put their message in the foreground

Statistics prove time and again that the first three seconds of a video are critical. In this case, according to TikTok research, more than 63% of the ads that showcase a product or message in the first three seconds have the most clicks.

20. Almost 50% of the top performing ads on TikTok strike an emotional chord

According to TikTok statistics, almost half of the top auction ads on the platform address an emotion.

"With TikTok this means that it remains real and understandable," explains a company guide. "Great TikTok content often has an undertone of lightheartedness and assertiveness."

21. Vertical TikTok videos have one 25% higher Review rate

In particular, vertical videos have a 25% higher 6-second review rate. Those six seconds can make all the difference, especially on a TikTok ad. Who doesn't shoot vertically for TikTok right now?

22nd 33% of top ads on TikTok break the fourth wall

TikTok data shows that every third ad with the highest view rate someone is speaking directly to the audience.

It's no surprise that the creator-driven platform favors ads with a similar look and feel. This also applies to organic branded content. The Washington Post was one of the first to crack the format with its "TikTok Guy" Dave.

@Washington Post

Legislators are interviewing the CEOs of Google, Facebook and Twitter today about the role companies have played in spreading misinformation.

♬ Original sound – Tara's mom and dad

23. In a poll by Kantar, 72% Participants preferred the TopView ad format

In a Kantar survey commissioned by TarTok, almost three quarters of those surveyed rated TopView as the first among TikTok's ad formats. In addition to the full-screen and sound-on features of the format, participants cited the more natural placement as a reason for their preference.

To reinforce this finding, TopView ads were also rated with the lowest skip preference, lowest annoyance level, and highest alertness level. The format also ranked first in terms of credibility and willingness to click or share categories, as well as other call-to-action attributes.

Learn how to make converted TikTok ads.

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