For most global websites, web analytics will typically tell you that American internet users represent by far the biggest group of visitors.
But with the US now accounting for just 9% of the world’s online population, can this really be the case? Discover key drivers of this misattribution, including the fact that there are more internet users in countries like China and India than there are in America - despite their invisibility in passively collected analytics data.
Over a quarter of internet users are going online via Virtual Private Networks and Proxy Servers – mainly to avoid internet restrictions, to stay anonymous and to access geographically-limited TV and film content.
There are more than nine IP addresses per real-life internet user in America; in no way can this reflect reality, with lots of these addresses representing individuals based in other countries.
A significant amount of web traffic flows via the US regardless of source and destination – a reflection of the legacy control that the US had in the foundation of the web.
Multi-device internet access has become the norm, making it extremely difficult to track an individual’s behavior across devices (especially if they are not logged in). This trend is most pronounced on mobiles and tablets.
Consumers in fast-growth markets, where there are lower levels of investment in building measurement techniques and services, tend to be impacted much more heavily by the measurement problems inherent to The Missing Billion.
They are more likely to be using VPNs, more likely to be mobile-only users, more likely to be using multiple and/or shared devices – and hence, more likely to be invisible. Discover how this is impacts on decision-making at big businesses.
Audiences in fast-growth nations are being under-represented, meaning internet users in these countries are receiving a poorer online experience than they deserve – with fewer services and less content available.
Budgets that could be maximized in fast-growth markets are often being funneled to mature internet nations where it is assumed (potentially incorrectly) that the biggest audiences are located.
Too heavy a reliance on incomplete or inaccurate data means that many marketers, content-owners and brands are missing out on the biggest opportunity in a generation.
A distorted view of where audiences are located is impacting commercial decisions - dollars are being prioritized incorrectly and potential revenue streams are being overlooked.