The Year in Review: 2016 in 6 Infographics (Part 2)

Verto Analytics created six infographics to illustrate some of the year’s biggest movers and shakers. We published The Year in Review: 2016 in 6 Infographics (Part 1) last month; now, we continue our look back at the trends that shaped 2016 with our second installment. Interested in all six infographics? Download the full set here.

Who is the Stickiest of them All?

While Verto Analytics tracks user numbers and reach, more and more digital properties and apps are optimizing for user engagement. Verto’s stickiness rating compares daily users to monthly users to quantify the most engaged users; the higher the rating, the more engaging a property is. We looked at the stickiest properties across eight major categories that we profiled in our Verto Index throughout the year: streaming video (April), travel apps (May), mobile games (June), messaging apps (July), news sites (August), health and fitness apps (September), social media (October), and e-commerce (November).

Social media properties, messaging apps, and mobile games are the stickiest of all, with Facebook claiming the highest stickiness rating of 75% as well as the largest overall number of monthly unique users (235 million). And while Amazon, the reigning e-commerce giant, also attracts upwards of 200 million monthly unique users, its stickiness rating still clocks in at just 31%, less than half of Facebook. With numbers like these, it’s so surprise that publishers and retailers are increasingly looking to social media platforms for new content distribution and social commerce opportunities.

Cross Device is the new standard

In October, we predicted that 2017 would see the rise of the cross-device consumer. According to our data from 2016, five of the leading digital brands in the world already seem well on their way (perhaps with the exception of enterprise-minded Microsoft). Verto Analytics data shows that consumers are increasingly relying on multiple devices to access Google, Facebook, and Amazon: while Google received 210 million unique users in November 2016, the average user relied on nearly 2 devices to access Google’s properties, accounting for 368 million visits overall. And four of the top five digital brands saw an increase in users who accessed their respective websites, apps, and services using mobile devices, especially smartphones. At the same time, there’s been a decrease in sessions via PC – a trend that even impacts Microsoft’s desktop-focused suite of software and services.

International Device Trends: All Eyes on China

We also looked beyond borders in 2016: while the overall reach of smartphones among American adults is 71%, it still lags behind every other country on our list except Japan. Our data on device ownership in key markets across Europe and Asia show especially aggressive mobile device reach in India and especially China. Earlier this summer, CEO Hannu Verkasalo highlighted reasons why China’s mobile ecosystem is one to watch. Looking beyond smartphones, the Chinese market also shows a strong appetite for other mobile devices, such as wearables and tablets. As forecasts for the U.S. wearables market begin to soften, China’s sizeable consumer base may be the one to drive domestic as well as global growth in this sector.

Interested in our 2016 infographics? Click here to download the entire collection.