As the go-to place to search for information, Google has been the number-one website in the world for quite some time, but the most popular domain in 2021 turns out to be TikTok.
According to CloudFlare – a web security and optimisation company that also ranks website traffic data – Google.com has been the most visited site in the world for many years. And it’s not surprising – it’s the go-to search engine and the homepage of most users. In 2020, it was in its usual number-one spot, while TikTok took seventh place. But in February 2021, the picture changed, when the China-owned platform overtook Google for the first time ever. Throughout the year, the two domains have battled for top position, but, since August, TikTok has been regularly beating Google in daily traffic, leading to an unexpected result: TikTok was the most popular website in 2021.
It’s important to note, however, that CloudFlare uses a very specific set of criteria and factors to order its rankings, analyzing aggregated data combining popularity, percentage change in traffic patterns, and change in rank over time. Notably, content servers and pornography are excluded from the rankings. CloudFlare is so far the first website-ranking service to award TikTok the number-one spot, while others still list Google as the most popular, followed by the likes of Facebook and Amazon. However, considering TikTok is used mainly as an app, it’s possible the other services don’t take that into consideration in their rankings.
Since its inception, TikTok has been steadily gaining in popularity. The platform initially drew the attention primarily of teenagers and influencers, but it’s now grown in recognition among all age groups and demographics, offering videos on topics ranging from life hacks to recipes, and generating many a meme. It saw a particularly huge spike in traffic during the pandemic, and that’s no doubt how it rose to become one of the biggest social media platforms in the world.
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