Chances are, you've probably spent an afternoon falling down a rabbit hole of YouTube videos.
While it's a great source of entertainment, YouTube has also proved itself to be a valuable tool for marketers. With a global user base of more than 2 billion people, it's also safe to assume that your target audience is on the platform.
In this post, we'll go over key YouTube statistics you need to know this year to help you succeed in your marketing efforts.
2023 YouTube Demographics
Below, we'll go over the most critical YouTube statistics that show marketers how global audiences are using the platform.
General YouTube User Demographics
- 81% of U.S. adults say they use YouTube in 2021, up 8% from 2019. (Pew Research)
- YouTube is the second most visited website in the world. (Hootsuite)
- YouTube accounts for more than 25% of total worldwide mobile traffic. (Sandvine)
- YouTube has 2+ billion users, making up almost one-third of the entire internet. (YouTube for Press)
- In 2021, 36% of U.S. adults say they visit YouTube several times a day. (Pew Research)
- These 2+ billion users are present in over 100 countries and consume content in 80 different languages. (YouTube for Press)
- 70% of viewers bought from a brand after seeing content on YouTube. (Google Ads)
- 49.3% of all YouTube viewing time in 2022 will be mobile. (eMarketer)
- YouTube is the top video streaming app, and the average user spends 23.2 hours per month watching content. (App Annie)
- The most popular YouTube video is Baby Shark Dance with 10.41 billion views. (Statista)
- YouTube TV ended Q3 2020 with 3 million subscribers. (Alphabet)
- 70% of people used YouTube to exercise in 2020. (YouTube)
- Livestreams on YouTube grew 45% in the first half of 2020. (YouTube)
YouTube Age Demographics
- Millennials trust YouTube more than any other generation. (HubSpot Blog Research)
- 56% of Gen Z, 54% of Millennials, 48% of Gen X, and 26% of Boomers say they discover new products most often on YouTube. (HubSpot Blog Research)
- In 2021, 95% of U.S. adults between 18 and 29 years of age said they use YouTube (the age demographic with the highest percentage) while only 49% of U.S. adults who are 65+ years reported using it. (Pew Research)
- As of 2022, 20.2% of YouTube's advertising audience is between 25 and 34 – the largest group – and 15.5% is between 35 and 44. (Hootsuite)
- In 2020, 80% of U.S. parents with a child age 11 or younger say their child watches videos on YouTube, and 53% of those children use the platform daily. (Pew Research Center)
- 84% of parents who use YouTube or YouTube Kids agree that YouTube makes learning more fun for their children. (Oxford Economics)
YouTube Gender Demographics
Please note that audience data for individuals who do not identify within the binary are not reported.
- 82% of U.S. adults who identify as male report using YouTube. (Pew Research)
- 80% of U.S. adults who identify as male say they use YouTube. (Pew Research)
- 45.8% of YouTube's total advertising audience identifies as female. (Hootsuite)
- 54.2% of YouTube's total advertising audience is male. (Hootsuite)
YouTube Geography Demographics
- As of February 2021, 16.6% of YouTube site visits come from the United States, 9.4% comes from India, and 4.9% comes from Japan. (Alexa)
- YouTube has launched local versions of the platform in more than 100 countries. (YouTube for Press)
- 74% of U.S. adults living in rural areas,, 81% of those living in suburban areas, and 84% living in urban areas report using YouTube. (Pew Research)
What Different Generations Watch on YouTube
What Gen Z Watches on YouTube
- According to a 2021 report, 83% of Gen Z have used YouTube to watch soothing content that helps them relax. (YouTube)
- 85% of teens use YouTube, making it the most popular among teens. (Pew Research)
- 82% of Gen Z say they’ve used YouTube to watch content that will make them feel nostalgic. (YouTube)
Takeaways for Video Marketers
Based on the research, Gen Z turns to YouTube when they want to relax or revisit positive memories from their past. If you're targeting Gen Z, entertaining content will reign supreme.
What Millennials Watch on YouTube
- YouTube reaches more millennials than all the TV networks combined. (The Shelf)
- A 2022 report found that YouTube will have nearly double the penetration of TikTok among millennials this year. (eMarketer)
- Millennials prefer watching:
- News and human interest stories to keep up to date
- Unboxing and product review videos to influence spending
- Quick and fun entertainment content (The Shelf)
Takeaways for Video Marketers
Millennials go to YouTube when they want to learn something or be entertained. Additionally, they go to the platform to be inspired, watch TV, and catch up on the news. If you're targeting millennials, news stories, product reviews, entertaining content, and inspiring content will win out.
How to Target the Right Demographic on YouTube
While each generation might watch fairly similar content, it's important to remember that the goal is different. For Gen X it might be to reminisce, while for Boomers it's to save time, and for Millennials and Gen Z, it could be to learn something new.
To properly target the right demographic on YouTube, pay attention to the most popular categories and types of videos they watch on the platform.
Just as it is for all social networks, building a presence on YouTube requires understanding which segments of your audience are already there and what they're watching.
Use these statistics to create a YouTube marketing strategy that speaks to your audience's interests, drives revenue, and increases conversions.
Having that information makes it easier to create content that speaks to their interests, maximize ROI, and achieve general marketing success.
Editor's note: This post was originally published in April 2019 and has been updated for comprehensiveness.