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From Googling anything you want to know to disappearing down YouTube rabbit holes, we all spend a large chunk of our time on the Internet. Being able to see what the most-visited websites are every year is interesting, but how long are we spending on these websites?
We used data from SimilarWeb to discover how long the world spends on the biggest websites.
Here’s What We Found:
Every year the world spends a combined 422 billion hours on Google, YouTube, Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.
Five of the top 10 sites the world spends most time on are search engines : Google, Yahoo, Baidu of China, Yandex of Russia, and Naver of South Korea.
Yahoo is the world's top news and media site, with 5.7 billion hours spent on it annually.
Global gaming platform Roblox beat out Twitch to the top spot in the video games category, recording 11 billion visits a year along with 2.9 billion hours.
Tinder remains the one to beat in the dating category with 1.3 billion visits and 233 million hours spent on the dating platform each year.
When it comes to websites Americans spend most time on, it’s not too dissimilar to the world’s top 10, as Google, YouTube, Facebook, and Twitter still hold the top four spots.
The e-commerce giant Amazon is in 6th place in the U.S. with 24 billion visits and 2.8 billion hours spent on the site annually, beating Instagram’s 12.9 billion visits and 1.6 billion hours by quite some margin.
The Hottest HTTP Hangouts
Zyro researched the top websites across several popular categories to see where the world is spending time online.
The top two news websites have contrasting patterns. The number one – perhaps surprisingly – is
, which racks up 5.7 billion hours of the world’s attention each year. That’s the equivalent of
42,700 yearssquashed into one.
The second-placed news website is South Korea’s Google equivalent, naver.com , with 4.6 billion hours/year. However, the average visit to yahoo.com is 7:46 minutes versus 20:26 minutes for Naver. You can infer that Yahoo gets a lot more visits, but visitors skim the headlines – while Naver’s readers may read the news in greater depth. Indeed, it’s the length of visits to Naver that makes it the tenth biggest website in the world, measured by time spent. It is only number 27 when measured by visitor numbers.
The other big climber, when measured by time rather than visitor numbers, is the Russian search engine, yandex.ru . An average visit of 11:57 minutes swells usage time to 7.8bn hours/year, pushing Wikipedia out of the top ten. Wikipedia is the sixth biggest by number (68,640m annual visits) but racks up an average of just 03:55 minutes, making 4.5bn hours/year.
We Spend a Combined 1.6 Million Years Browsing Google
You can probably guess the world’s most visited websites . But foot traffic alone does not define how much use a website gets. In the realm of the goldfish attention span, the websites where the world stays a while may be more relevant than those we click and leave.
Google.com is the world’s most visited website, no matter how you count it. Reddit may claim to be the ‘the front page of the internet,’ but the western world defaults to Google when they want to go deeper.
Out of the top 20 sites with the most visits, Google has the second-highest visit duration: 11:58 minutes. Times that by a trillion annual visits and we’re spending 1.6 million years per year on Google’s search engine alone. Google may be a diving point into the internet, but it increasingly provides the answers right there on the home page via snippets and other gadgets – creating a culture of ‘ zero-click search ’.
The Websites Where America Spends Billions of Hours
Google, YouTube, Facebook, and Twitter: American’s big time-consuming websites reflect those of the wider world. However, Amazon – which doesn’t operate in every country – leaps from 20th to 6th place when only American clicks and dwell time are counted. Americans spend 2.8 billion hours on Amazon each year.
Microsoft Office online
is another big climber when only American figures are taken into account. It is the ninth most viewed website by Americans, at 1.2 billion hours annually – equivalent to
Should They Stay or Should they Go?
Google Analytics defines time on page as the average amount of time that visitors spend on a page, but face it – you’d like your visitors to stay longer.
An engaging website causes visitors to spend more time there. The longer they stay, the more products and information they see. Right?
Sort of. Common sense suggests you want a lot of people to visit your website, and for them to visit for a good while. But the internet – and Google rankings – don’t always agree. After all, there are many reasons somebody might spend a long time on your website – perhaps they’re struggling to find what they’re looking for or need help to make a decision.
Ultimately, the time users spend on your website in absolute terms is not the be-all and end-all. The relationship between dwell time and search engine ranking remains blurry. What counts is whether visitors are spending an appropriate amount of time on your pages and what they do next .
The sites were taken from
SimilarWeb's Most Popular Websitesworldwide ranking for the following categories:
For each site, we recorded the number of monthly visits and the average visit duration.
To calculate the time spent annually in hours and years, we converted monthly visits into yearly visits and multiplied the resulting figure by the average visit duration in hours.
For the United States, we took SimilarWeb's ranking of the 50 most popular websites in the U.S. We then calculated the time spent annually by multiplying the U.S share of visits for each website by the average visit durations.
Data gathered in May 2021.