Source: LinkedIn, Statista, FinancesOnline market projections
Linkedin is unique among social networking sites as specifically targeted to professional networking. Available in 200 countries, there are over 675 million people on LinkedIn. As the platform’s aim is professional networking, it is included as a social network and contributes to the over 3 billion social media users around the world.
Although Linkedin has over 675 million subscribers, they do not release insights into monthly active user(MAU) data. Insights from SimilarWeb showed there have been 844.11 million unique site visits in December 2019. Data from SimilarWeb. Hootsuite and WeAreSocial were used to project an active user base of 310 million for October 2019. The number is equivalent to 47% of LinkedIn’s subscriber number.
This article looks at the number of LinkedIn users, the demographics of its subscribers, the growth rate of the leading social network for showcasing and sourcing talent, and its revenue earnings for the last decade by delving into the categories below:
Upwards of 50% of those who earn an annual income of $70K and over are LinkedIn subscribers. A higher income bracket increases LinkedIn usage. Data from LinkedIn states 4 of out 5 LinkedIn members drive business decisions.
These decision-makers are in senior- and C-level executive positions, and number over 250 million subscribers. Education is a driver of LinkedIn use; Omnicore reports 51% of US college graduates have a LinkedIn account.
Source: We are Flint, Statista
LinkedIn Premium is a powered-up version of the freemium basic account. The service follows a subscription model with additional features such as InMail, insights and analytics, and unlimited search. it’s one of LinkedIn’s revenue streams; it made up 17% of its 2015 revenues. Premium users are 35% to 39% of LinkedIn’s subscriber base. That’s 236 million users that could net $7.1 billion in potential subscription revenue based on the lowest Premium Career subscription tier.
LinkedIn allows users a maximum of 30,000 first-level connections on their network. The average number of connections is anywhere between 500 to 999. There is no ideal number as connections do not magically convert to opportunity. LinkedIn experts suggest 30 as the number of connections to increase the value of your network; the point where you’d see more engagement on your feed and posts.
There are LinkedIn subscribers who have exceeded the 30K connection limit. They refer to themselves as LION, LinkedIn Open Networker, and accept connection requests from anyone. Steven Burda is one such networker having over 50,000 connections. He’s recognized as the most connected person on LinkedIn that he’s basically a 2nd level connection for many. Out of curiosity, I looked him up on LinkedIn, and what do you know, he is a 2nd-level connection of mine with multiple mutual connections.
Aside from finding personal employment and sourcing corporate talent recruitment, LinkedIn is also utilized as a digital advertising channel for B2B marketing and sales. With over 675 million accounts, LinkedIn boasts 3 million members with MBAs, 10 million C-level executives, 17 million thought leaders, 63 million decision-makers, and over 90 million senior-level executives.
The US leads with the number of accounts forming over 30% of worldwide Linkedin users. Companies, organizations, and learning institutions have a presence on LinkedIn numbering 30 million company profiles and 90 thousand schools.
Data from LinkedIn reveal the top 10 countries with the highest number of subscribers include the US at the top spot, along with Canada representing North America. Countries from other regions also make appearances on the list save for the Middle East and Africa.
Source: Thinknum, FinancesOnline projections
User account numbers and penetration rates can be mutually exclusive. There are countries with low user account numbers but high penetration rates and vice versa. Case in point, Iceland has a population of 362,860 and 237,200 LinkedIn users, as of December 2019. This is a 65% penetration rate. LinkedIn user numbers possibly exceed the labor force, which is at just over 200,000 as per Worldometer.
Analytics from SimilarWeb and Alexa both point to the US as the country that generates the most site traffic. SimilarWeb reports the US generates 31.71% of LinkedIn web traffic and India in second place with 6%.
Although there is a mobile app, LinkedIn is often accessed with a desktop; 3 out of 4 users log into the site using a computer. Access via desktop allows you to use all the features and search functions, both of which are limited in the mobile version no matter how well-designed and intuitive the app may be.
The US has the highest number of users totaling over 167 million as of January 2020. Since its founding, LinkedIn has enjoyed a healthy local user base. A slowdown has been noted in LinkedIn’s US user numbers with increasing user account numbers coming from other countries.
The country currently has 64 million LinkedIn accounts and places a distant second to the US. The number represents just 4.6% of the country’s population. An India Workforce Report for the 2nd half of 2018 revealed software and IT services are the top sectors that hire on LinkedIn India. Top skills listed on users’ profiles include Java, SQL, and C (Programming Language).
The number of LinkedIn users in the UK is 28 million. Though the figure remains unchanged from October 2019 to January 2020, the UK leads the European region in the number of LinkedIn users.
The city of London was chosen most connected city with its residents having an average of 307 LinkedIn connections.
LinkedIn was launched in China in 2014 as Lingyin. The professional network had major differences compared to the version the rest of the world uses – a concession to government regulations and censorship laws.
User accounts grew 1100% from an initial 4 million in its first year to 2019’s more than 48 million.
Source: LinkedIn, FinancesOnline market projection
LinkedIn’s value proposition is as a platform to showcase skills and build a professional network thus making users more attractive to talent recruitment. The demographics for LinkedIn users include a college degree or advanced higher education, live in urban areas, and earn more than $75K annually.
LinkedIn users cover the working-age segments of 18 to 55 years old—the period when many people are gainfully employed and productive. Across the ten countries with the most users, the 25-34 age group is consistently ranked as frequent users of LinkedIn. There is also a trend of lower user account numbers in the older age groups.
This could be a reflection of reticence to technology among members of older age groups. The trend will likely change as the current user population ages.
Source: DataReportal; Hootsuite; We Are Social, Statista
As previously mentioned, the 25-34 age group are the most frequent users of LinkedIn. This is consistent whether you look at user stats from Asia, Africa, or Europe. On average, 25-34 year-olds use LinkedIn 60% of the time. Over 50% of college students in the US have a LinkedIn account even before they graduate.
Putting work experience and credentials where it’s discoverable makes you visible to recruiters; increasing the likelihood of employment
Source: DataReportal; Hootsuite; We Are Social, Statista
Worldwide LinkedIn usage has a 28% gender skew favoring men. The disparity isn’t that big when the figures are compared side by side, but the trend is persistent throughout varied countries around the world.
Results for the US is 48% and 52% while for the UK it’s 35% and 65%, with the larger figure in favor of men for both instances.
Source: DataReportal; Hootsuite; We Are Social, Statista
A wealth market report from SpectremGroup in 2016 claims 40% of millionaires are on LinkedIn. The data is a bit dated but a more recent study from We are Flint shows a correlation between higher household income to LinkedIn use.
The same study also notes regional breakdown is predisposed to urban dwellers – 44% versus 27%. The Pew Research Center’s result for a similar study yielded near comparable results.
Source: Pew Research CenterDesigned by
The average visit to LinkedIn’s website lasts 7 minutes, 12 seconds according to SimilarWeb. Alexa returns a longer 10-minute session average.
Pages per visit reflect conservative values from SimilarWeb, 6.9 compared to Alexa’s 8.37. In those 7 minutes, LinkedIn users would have scrolled and engaged with posts on their feed, checked on available jobs, and sent or accepted connection invitations.
The site reported that it took down over 21 million fake accounts between January and June 2019. Ninety-five percent of these accounts were prevented from getting past registration. Another 2 million accounts were restricted after it was reported by other users as suspicious.
LinkedIn has close to 150 industries listed by its 675 million users.
The industries are diverse and wide-ranging but the top 3 industries listed by its users include Information Technology and Services, Hospital and Healthcare, and Construction.
In regard to the number of connections, the most connected industry is staffing and recruiting which has an average of 702 connections. No surprise there, people in this industry receive numerous connection requests from people wanting to expand their networks and gain avenues for employment opportunity and growth. The top 5 also includes human resources, a close cousin to staffing and recruiting.
LinkedIn’s 675 million users list 35,000 skills.
The website shares the top 5 job functions with the most number of connections as human resources, project management, business development, marketing, and consulting. Human resources have an average of 415 connections.
LinkedIn shares insights into promising professions for 2020 in the US. The jobs are tech-focused and data-reliant with the exception of #9, a job focused on helping manage mental health and behavioral disorders. The growth of jobs in the tech sector isn’t new, there is a strong demand for a human component—specifically in sales and customer relations—that arguably cannot be automated, yet.
|Emerging Jobs in the US, 2020|
|1.||Artificial Intelligence Specialist|
|4.||Full Stack Engineer|
|5.||Site Reliability Engineer|
|6.||Customer Success Specialist|
|7.||Sales Development Representative|
|8.||Sales Development Representative|
Data from Linkedin’s statistics page report 2 LinkedIn accounts are created every second. The current user numbers are a far cry from its first-year user stats of just over 100,000 in 2003 – a noteworthy 166900% increase.
The number of Linkedin users has grown tremendously since it launched in 2003. However, the last decade has seen a downturn; each progressive year reflecting diminishing returns which can be an indication of saturation of the professional social network.
Source: LinkedIn, FinancesOnline market projections
Others argue LinkedIn is not a social network anymore, instead, it works as a social marketplace. Going by this reasoning, is it even worth it to be on LinkedIn now? Yes, LinkedIn is a goldmine for marketing opportunities for B2B selling. It’s also the go-to tool for talent recruitment.
Looking at social media trends in general may also provide a hint regarding the future of the professional networking site.
Signing up for LinkedIn is free but additional services can be accessed for a monthly fee. These subscriptions form a sizeable chunk of LinkedIn’s annual revenue.
LinkedIn does not release the breakdown for their revenue streams but conservative estimates place the figure at anywhere between 15% – 20% of total annual revenues.
Figures from LinkedIn’s 2019 fiscal period revealed LinkedIn revenue was $6.8 billion, more than a 25% increase from the previous year’s earnings.
Double-digit growth has been steady since its 2016 acquisition by Microsoft; market analysis project continued revenue growth based on additional user accounts, 5.5% average growth from 2019 – 2023.
Source: Microsoft, Statista
Similar to other social media networks, LinkedIn earns a substantial portion of its revenue from advertising.
But unlike other social media networks, LinkedIn stands out with its premium subscription offer. Paid subscriptions lets you do advanced searches, send messages to other members out of your network, and access to skills development.
LinkedIn does not release revenue segments specifics since its acquisition. The last available data of their revenue breakdown was from 2016, the year prior to Microsoft’s purchase. Revenue sources for the professional network company fall into three segments—Marketing Solutions, Talent Solutions, and Premium Subscriptions.
Of the three, Talent Solutions make up the majority share of company profits at 65%. Although the figures are not current, the growth earnings continue on an upward trajectory. LinkedIn lists more than 20 million jobs and claims 95% of Fortune 500 companies that use Talent Solutions for their recruitment and talent acquisition needs. Among LinkedIn’s revenue stream-generating fronts is LinkedIn Sales Navigator, which you can read more about through our review.
Source: LinkedIn, Microsoft
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