SimilarWeb, an internet research firm, has predicted that statistically speaking YouTube will take Facebook’s spot as the second most popular website in America by the end of the year. YouTube is currently the third most popular website in America. YouTube quickly became the most popular video sharing website since its inception in 2005. Its popularity has only increased since it was acquired by Google in 2006.

YouTube becoming the second most popular website in America is huge news for a handful of reasons. We can also expect some other changes in the internet rankings later this year, which we will also cover.

Alphabet Dominates The Internet

Alphabet, the parent company of Google and YouTube, has dominated the internet for close to a decade. This is mostly due to Google search. Google has been the most popular website in America for nearly a decade. YouTube’s rising popularity means that Alphabet will completely dominate the internet.  

This is important because Alphabet generates a whopping 87% of their revenue from advertising. If you wanted to remove Google advertising from your company, then things just got much more difficult with the two most popular websites on the internet owned by Alphabet.

It also means that most of our information must travel through an Alphabet owned company. You can say that Alphabet has a wide range of influence of the different information that Americans will view.

YouTube Will Take Facebook’s Spot As Second Most Popular Website

Facebook Still Has App Traffic

Facebook still generates a majority of their traffic from their Facebook mobile application. Now, SimilarWeb included that traffic in their study and YouTube will still beat Facebook by the end of the year. However, total traffic is only part of the story within a business context. Mobile traffic makes up the other part of the story.

Users of the Facebook app do not have the ability to block Facebook ads with an ad blocker – a big issue that YouTube must overcome. Facebook’s ability to force users to the mobile app has really saved them in this case. It allows for higher revenue and more advertising impressions. An important factor for a company that generates the vast majority of their revenue from advertising.

On the other hand, YouTube still struggles with mobile users due to the difficulties of streaming videos on a mobile phone. This results in a larger amount of slightly less valuable desktop traffic.

Facebook is Targeting Gamers

It’s no secret that the large spike in YouTube traffic is due to the increasing popularity of gamers live streaming. This trend has really risen in popularity in the past five years and is a major catalyst in YouTube’s rapid growth.

Facebook is not sitting idly and watching YouTube, and Twitch, dominate the live streaming. Instead, Facebook launched a live-streaming competitor called fb.gg. Facebook has a few unique things to offer that YouTube and Twitch do not.

Facebook has the Level Up program, which gives viewers the ability to purchase virtual goods for gamers. Basically, this is a combination of Patreon and Twitch on the same platform. They also have a unique partnership program with some of the more popular gamers.

Both of those features are used to draw content creators to fb.gg from YouTube and Twitch. Time will tell if those features are enough to gather enough livestreamers.

Fb.gg was launched in June of 2018.

Video is The Future

One thing that YouTube taking over shows is that video is the future. This is readily apparent with the rise of YouTube streaming. Some of this can be attributed to faster internet speeds, especially mobile data. However, a bigger trend is people foregoing cutting their cable television and choosing to watch content on YouTube.

This content is not necessarily content created by major studios. As mentioned in the previous point, much of the surge in YouTube’s popularity is due to the rise of live streaming. Live streaming is of course content created by independent content creators.

The trend towards video is important to note for advertising. The days of dominating the internet with simple banner ads will come to an end within a few years. Banner ads are simply less effective with an audience that craves video.

Don’t worry if video production is outside your budget. The rise of independent content creators will mean a rise in the need for alternative methods of monetization that could include in-product placement or sponsored videos. Both of those options will cost significantly less than producing your own video advertisements to publish on YouTube.

Amazon Will Overtake Yahoo

SimilarWeb also predicts that Amazon will overtake Yahoo. Yahoo is currently the fourth most popular website in America and Amazon is the fifth most popular.

This is also important news. Amazon trailing behind Facebook indicates a strong shift away from social media and an increasing dependence on e-commerce. Plus, at the rate Amazon is growing we might even see them overtake YouTube in the next few years.

Amazon launching a live streaming service similar to YouTube, Twitch, and fb.gg within the next few years is the most likely path to overtaking YouTube’s popularity. If that is the case, then we could see Amazon as a major advertising platform.

In terms of Yahoo, you can mostly ignore them as an advertising platform at this point. The once popular search engine has fallen due to a combination of mismanagement and disastrous acquisitions. We expect Yahoo to keep falling in the rankings as time passes.

Final Thoughts

The impact of YouTube becoming the second most popular is probably not fully understood by most people. However, the points listed above should provide a clear enough point about the importance of YouTube overtaking Facebook.

The main takeaway is that Facebook is slowly losing relevance as video streaming becomes more popular. Use the knowledge in your advertising campaigns.

Also to note is the rise of Amazon. If you have a product based business, then advertising directly on Amazon could be of great benefit. Furthermore, if you still advertise on Yahoo, then you should probably stop as Yahoo is slowly losing market share and popularity.


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