Online Sharing Trends, Statistics, User Behaviour & Preferences

ShareThis conducted a study with Starcom MediaVest Group and Rubinson Partners to understand the sharing and clicking habits of more than 300 million people a month. These are people who share links with via ShareThis button currently placed on more than 1 million websites leading to generation of about 7 billion pageviews a month.

  • Sharing generates nearly 10 percent of all Internet traffic
  • Sharing also produces 31 percent of referral traffic to sites from search and social (Search is about twice as big currently).
  • Facebook attributes to 38 percent of all sharing referral traffic with email and Twitter tied for second with 17 percent each. (These are the percentages that actually clicked through, raw sharing numbers are higher).
  • Facebook makes up 56 percent of all shared content (up from 45 percent in August, 2010), followed by email at 15 percent (down from 34 percent) and Twitter at 8 percent (down from 12 percent). The difference between these two sets of numbers is that some content is shared that is never clicked on, thus the raw numbers are higher.
  • On average, Twitter links are clicked on 4.9 times each, versus 4.3 times for Facebook links and 1.7 times for emailed links.
  • Links are much less likely to be clicked beyond the initial set of people they are shared with. 
  • 80 percent of people share only one category of links and more than 70 percent will only ever click on one category, whether that is business, politics, or entertainment.
  • Facebook is especially strong when it comes to sharing entertainment and even shopping links, whereas email and Twitter seem to make some inroads when it comes to business or health.