Facebook sways Indian Social Networking arena

Mumbai : comScore, Inc. has released a report on traffic to Social Networking sites in India, revealing that Facebook.com grabbed the number one ranking in the category for the first time in July with 20.9 million visitors, up 179 percent versus year ago.

“The social networking phenomenon continues to gain steam worldwide, and India represents one of the fastest growing markets at the moment,” said Will Hodgman, comScore executive vice president for the Asia-Pacific region. “Though Facebook has tripled its audience in the past year to pace the growth for the category, several other social networking sites have posted their own sizeable gains.”

More than 33 million Internet users age 15 and older in India visited social networking sites in July, representing 84 percent of the total Internet audience. India now ranks as the seventh largest market worldwide for social networking, after the U.S., China, Germany, Russian Federation, Brazil and the U.K. The total Indian social networking audience grew 43 percent in the past year, more than tripling the rate of growth of the total Internet audience in India.

Facebook.com posted an especially strong month in July, growing 12 percent versus June, to capture the top spot in the category with 20.9 million visitors. Orkut ranked second with 19.9 million visitors (up 16 percent vs. year ago), followed by BharatStudent.com with 4.4 million visitors (up 3 percent). Twitter.com had the highest rate of growth among the top five social networking sites, increasing 239 percent to 3.3 million visitors. Yahoo! owned two of the top ten social networking sites: Yahoo! Pulse (3.5 million visitors) and Yahoo! Buzz (1.8 million visitors).

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