Facebook has finally done it: the service is now the most popular social network in Brazil, following a year of exceptional growth. Last month, Facebook overtook Google's Orkut in the country.
In December 2011, Facebook attracted 36.10 million visitors – representing an increase of 192 percent in the past twelve months, according to comScore. Orkut took second by attracting 34.42 million visitors (growing just 5 percent in the past year).
Windows Live Profile was in third with 13.30 million (up 13 percent), Twitter was fourth with 12.50 million (up 40 percent), and Vostu was fifth with 4.90 million (up 338 percent). New to the scene last year, Google+ attracted 4.3 million visitors during December 2011, taking sixth place ahead of Tumblr and LinkedIn.
Facebook is not only growing when it comes to its Brazilian user base, but the country's users are becoming more engaged. In December 2010, an average visitor spent 37 minutes on the site. In December 2011, that number had surged to 285 minutes (up 667 percent). Visitors consumed an average of 500 pages of content on the site during December 2011 (up 655 percent), and visited the site an average of 27 times during the month (up 163 percent).
In comScore's last report featuring October 2011 data, the firm noted Brazil was one of just seven countries (of the 43 countries that comScore reports on) where Facebook did not lead the local social networking category.
Putting aside China and Vietnam, which Menlo Park is blocked in, Facebook is quickly gaining on its competitors in each respective country. Now that it has won in Brazil, it only has four left: Japan, Poland, Russia, and South Korea.
"Facebook's rapid ascent in the Brazilian market has certainly been one of the most interesting stories to develop during the course of 2011," Alex Banks, comScore managing director for Brazil, said in a statement. "Brazil has always been a particularly social market and currently owns the fifth largest social networking population in the world. But despite the cultural affinity for social media, Facebook adoption had traditionally lagged in the market. That has all changed in the past year, during which the site has tripled in audience size as engagement has grown sevenfold to assume the leadership position in the market."