According to a recent survey in the United Kingdom, more people said they would abandon a flush toilet before giving up Facebook. In fact, the social network was ranked No. 3 in importance — just behind sunshine and drinking water!
OK, surveys definitely can be suspect. But when looking at actual online traffic, there is little doubt the Facebook is a global megaforce.
Consider this: Based on a study from Nielsen, Americans spent about 53 billion minutes on Facebook in May. By far, it was the most visited site on the web. It’s something that should be extremely scary for other major Net operators like Google (NASDAQ:GOOG), Microsoft (NASDAQ:MSFT) and Yahoo! (NASDAQ:YHOO).
And is it any wonder that investors are eagerly awaiting for a Facebook IPO? Yes, it should be huge. After all, Americans spend about 23% of their online time on social networks and blogs. The second-most popular activity is gaming, which comes to about 10% of time spent.
Yet the Nielsen study also noted something else that was interesting. A new company is climbing the social networking charts: Tumblr, whose online growth over the past year has tripled. Its current rank is No. 9.
Keep in mind that in May, the site served 623 million minutes, which actually beat Twitter (565 million minutes). LinkedIn (NYSE:LNKD) had only 325 million minutes.
Essentially, Tumblr morphs social networking and blogs. For example, you can do things like post messages, share photos/links and see videos. While this might seem like ordinary stuff, Tumblr’s service is attractive because it’s super-easy to use.
Now, it probably still will take a few years for the site to put pressure on Facebook — if it ever does. But given the ramp up in Tumblr’s growth, it seems like we’ll be hearing much more about the company.