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How does the world spend its time on the internet?

It’s the same for all of us. The moment we get any downtime, our phone comes out and we start browsing to pass the time. But which websites are your go-to world wide web destinations?

Zyro have done their research into which sites the world spends its time on, using data from SimilarWeb to pick out which social media sites, search engines, gaming sites and more account for the most hours spent online.

Here’s what they found:

The world’s favorite websites

You could probably make an educated guess at which websites we spend the most time on and be very close to right. There’s no huge shocks at the top of the list with Google a clear favorite thanks to an incredible 213.2 billion hours a year (or 1.6 million years) of our time spent there, whether we’re searching for medical symptoms, cinema listings or trying to work out what film you’ve seen that guy in, you know, that one with that other guy?

Google is our gateway to most of the rest of the internet and that’s particularly the case for YouTube, which they also own. Video is a hugely important part of how we spend our time online and YouTube sees us spending 142.6 billion hours a year consuming videos on there alone, with an average visit duration of nearly 22 minutes, almost twice as long as we spend searching on Google.

When we’ve searched for something and found an interesting, funny or useful video about it, what do we all do next? We share it with our friends of course, using social media, and the next three biggest sites on the internet are where we do that.

Facebook is the clear winner in social media terms, with 44.6 billion hours spent on there, compared to just 13.4 billion on Twitter and 8.9 on Instagram, proving that checking out your cousin’s vacation snaps is more popular than arguing with strangers about politics or sharing arty photos of your lunch.

And if we combine the time spent on Google, YouTube, Facebook, Twitter and Instagram, it'll be staggering 422 billion hours.

We spend 422 billion hours on these 5 websites (Most visited sites study)

Of course, even on the internet, there is life outside of Silicon Valley, so while the top five is made up of the familiar American corporate giants, the rest of the top 10 sees rather more diversity. There’s search engines from Russia (Yandex), China (Baidu) and South Korea (Naver) as well as the 90s (Yahoo) and then there’s a glimpse of the seedier side of the internet with XVideos and the 6.5 billion hours spent watching that kind of thing.

The world’s favorite entertainment sites

So, when we’re looking for something to entertain us on the internet, which websites do we head to? When it comes to music there’s only one clear winner of course, and that’s Spotify.com with 317.5 million hours spent there a year, and that’s seemingly mostly for downloading the actual app, as an average visit duration is just 4:19 minutes, which is only long enough to listen to one song (or part of a song if you’re a Pink Floyd fan). Even then it’s around twice that of nearest competitor Soundcloud, which has 160.8 million hours of annual browsing time.

Another major pastime on the net these days is gaming and Roblox comes out on top with 3 billion hours spent on there a year with an average visit duration of 16:43 minutes. That duration puts it fourth overall behind YouTube, Naver and Hulu in terms of how long we spend there each visit. If you’ve never heard of Roblox, it’s a child-targeted gaming site where players can explore lots of different worlds and interact with other gamers.

Young people today don’t just like to play online games though, they also like to watch other people play them, which is why the second biggest site in this category is Twitch, where gamers live stream themselves playing games like Roblox to millions of viewers, racking up 1.9 billion hours in total across a year.

A major part of our lives that hasn’t featured much yet is of course the streaming giants like Netflix and Disney+. Like Spotify, their stats here don’t represent the amount of time we actually spend watching their content, because most of this doesn’t take place on the websites themselves.

However, Netflix has still taken up 4.4 billion hours of our time, even with an average visit duration of just 9:49 minutes. That puts it ahead of competitors like Hulu and Disney+, but well behind YouTube where much more of the content is actually streamed on the site itself.

Where the world gets life’s essentials

There’s more to the internet than watching other people having fun of course. We also need to order some food to eat while we do so and there’s websites for that too. Websites like DoorDash, UberEats, GrubHub and Just Eat have been there for us through the pandemic and beyond, and we’ve spent between 31 million and 78 million hours on there respectively, with average visits between 5 and 7 minutes, the time it takes to decide which burger you want this time.

The internet is also there to help us find love and 232.5 million hours were spent on Tinder, with the likes of Badoo, Plenty of Fish and Match also making it into the top 5 dating websites, along with Russian site Fotostrana. Tinder users spent an average of 10 minutes per visit swiping left and right, while users of Match spent just 7 minutes browsing for their heart’s desire.

When it comes to travel, Booking.com came out on top with 382.6 million hours spent there, compared to just 132.4 million on nearest rival Airbnb, while 71.9 million hours were spent complaining about vacations on TripAdvisor.

How we choose to spend our time on the internet is unique to each of us, of course, but as these results show, there are places where we collectively spend billions of hours a year. Why not dig deeper into the data and see where your favorite website ranks?

Which Social Media Platforms Does the World Spend the Most Time On?
Which Dating Websites Does the World Spend the Most Time On?

Which Food Websites Does the World Spend the Most Time On?

Which Gaming Websites Does the World Spend the Most Time On?

Which Music Websites Does the World Spend the Most Time On?



Which Travel Websites Does the World Spend the Most Time On?

From Tinder and Twitter to Google and Spotify, this study from Zyro reveals what websites the world spends the most time on:

Read next: Research Reveals Social Media Apps Know Far Too Much About You

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