As the most populous country with the second-largest number of internet users globally, India’s internet market is both highly attractive and competitive. Although only 43% of Indians have internet access, a robust social media user base reportedly spends approximately 2.6 hours daily on social media platforms.
In recent years, India’s social media landscape has experienced significant shifts, including the government’s ban on major Chinese apps due to a border dispute with China. Consequently, TikTok is no longer accessible in India, and individuals with ties to China have sought alternatives to WeChat.
A notable development occurred in 2022 when the Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology (MEIT) in India established a three-member grievance redressal committee, despite opposition from tech companies. Following the committee’s formation, social media firms must comply with the government’s content moderation decisions, a move widely seen as part of the government’s attempts to exert control over social media companies.
Interestingly, according to a study published by the Oxford University, there is around 54% of Indian go to social media channels to find “truthful” information. The same figure for the global average is just 37% and the US is at 29%.
Another emerging trend is the growth of social commerce in India. A study by Bain & Company predicts that social commerce in India will witness a compound annual growth rate of 55-60% between FY 2020-2025, expanding the current market size from $1.5-2 billion to $16-20 billion.
Over the next decade, India is anticipated to become the largest market for social media advertising spending outside of China and is poised to be the fastest-growing market worldwide.
Given the latest survey available, in India there are about 470.1 million active social media users (Log in at least once in a month) in 2022. This is about 33.4 % of the addressable demographics. Also, Throughout 2021 to 2022, the number of users has grown 4.2 %.
In India, WhatsApp holds the title as the social media platform with the largest user base, closely followed by other Meta-owned platforms such as Instagram and Facebook, according to 2022 data. However, a large user base doesn’t necessarily correlate with usage. A recent consumer sentiment survey conducted by AXIS My India in January 2023 revealed that 35% of users considered Facebook their most frequently used social media platform, the highest in the country.
Similar to other countries where SMS messaging plans are not widely accessible or there’s a limited user base for Apple’s iMessage system, WhatsApp has emerged as the primary mode of communication for many citizens.
During the pandemic, strict social distancing measures prevented India’s 1.3 billion-strong population from engaging with others in-person, leading more people to turn to digital channels—specifically, WhatsApp—to stay connected with friends and family. This shift in behavior is also why WhatsApp’s search interest (measured by Google Trends) surpassed Facebook in mid-2021.
In India, WhatsApp’s dominance is unrivaled, with no clear competitors in sight. The introduction of WhatsApp Business and continuous enhancements to its commerce features have prompted many business owners to adopt the platform as their primary means of managing customer relationships. In January 2023, WhatsApp also announced it will even provide access to users that don’t have access to the internet, with servers and other relevant resources setup by volunteers.
With the latest data published in January 2023, we can see that at the growth rate of 1%, there is now around 448.8 million Facebook users in India . With male users account for around 72.99% and female users account for around 27.01%.
With the latest data published in January 2023, we can see that at the growth rate of 1.24%, there is now around 252.41 million Instagram users in India . With male users account for around 72.74% and female users account for around 27.26%.
With the latest data published in January 2023, we can see that at the growth rate of %, there is now around TikTok users in India . With male users account for around and female users account for around .
With the latest data published in January 2023, we can see that at the growth rate of 1.14x, there is now around 96.79 million LinkedIn users in India.