Aug 312009
 

There’s always a lot of questions around statistics and in particular how active “active users” actually are.  Facebook has what, 200 million? 250 million members? How many of them log in regularly? Well, let’s look at Australia and our massive growth since May 2007. From a few thousand users then to 6 and half million today, 2 years on.

Active Australian Facebook Users

Note the last section – nearly 6 million active users over 18 in Australia. If we look at over 13 year olds:

6m Australian Facebook UsersFrom memory, you can’t market to 13 year olds on Facebook. Shame. I’ve got some nice lollies and toy trucks and dolls to unload on ‘em :P

But what is an Active User?

General Growth
  • More than 250 million active users
  • More than 120 million users log on to Facebook at least once each day
  • More than two-thirds of Facebook users are outside of college
  • The fastest growing demographic is those 35 years old and older (Facebook.com)

After hunting around it seems that Facebook usually refers to “active users” as “monthly active users”.

MAU means monthly active user. You see other help topics for information about how a user is counted as an active user.
DAU = number of individual users who have interacted with the app during a particular day.
WAU = number of individual users who have interacted with the app during 7 days.
MAU = number of individual users who have interacted with the app during 30 days.
Here’s the list of actions which will add a unique user to your MAU count:

  • mock ajax request
  • fbml link click
  • canvas page view
  • click-to-play swf
  • message attachment
  • fbjs ajax
  • accepting a request
  • viewing a profile tab
  • publishing something via a publisher

We currently do not count About page views.

Also note:

  1. A user does not need to have granted access to the app to be counted as an active user
  2. A user does need to be logged in *to Facebook* to be counted
  3. We don’t pass any special parameter to the app to indicate whether the user is an active user. Basically, they should always be counted, except if they’re logged out of Facebook entirely (but keep in mind that an app has no way to distinguish between a) a user who has logged out of Facebook and b) a user who has not granted the app access). (From Facebook.com)

While the information above is for developers to count their monthly active users of their 3rd party applications on F8 (the Facebook development platform), it IS insightful.  A number of analysts have noted that active users refers to monthly logins. And last but not least, from Facebook themself:

Users

Over 250 million active (users who have returned to the site in the last 30 days) (FactSheet)

Don’t listen to current nonsense about drop offs.  Think stabilization instead!

If you enjoyed this post, please consider leaving a comment or subscribing to the RSS feed to have future articles delivered to your feed reader. Follow @Silkcharm on Twitter. Or you could just dance nekkid around the room for me.
%d bloggers like this: