Facebook vs MySpace Daily Page Views
Facebook vs. MySpace Daily Reach
Although Alexa figures have been never been truely representative, they are quite effective at showing trends. Even if this is not the correct traffic figures, the rapid upward trend of Facebook would suggest this is only a matter of time before they are No.1. Their successful headhunting of Google talent can only help.
Most commentators look at the user numbers to determine which social network platform is the most successful. The Times reported that Facebook’s audience grew by more than 270% to 52.2m users in the 12 months to June, while MySpace grew by 72% to 114.1m. In my opinion the important point here is the percentage of growth.
As Vanessa Fox pointed out for RSS feeds, subscription numbers do not indicate current usage. In the same way users can be subscribed to a feed but no longer read it, they may also have moved away from MySpace without closing their account.
The Alexa figures and the slow percentage growth may also point to a rising number of deflections from MySpace to Facebook. It should be worrying for investors that Facebook, which only opened it’s doors mid 2006 is now threatening the position of MySpace. A fact not gone unnoticed by Rupert Murdoch and News Corp. who bought the site in 2005 for $580m. He recently lamented that users were, “all going to Facebook”.
The market seems to agree that Facebook is destined for the top spot, valuing it at an astronomical $15billion. The big question though, is who is going to buy the platform? As DaveN points out, a purchase by Microsoft could give them significant user data for their age and gender targeting. It could also push Live.com back into the game for advertisers.