Looking at the Global Podcast Statistics (2020)…

Is the future for podcasting, good or bad you decide?

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Let's take a look at the impactful Podcast Statistics for the year 2020. As new stats and reports come out, this post will be updated with the latest info on the podcast listener landscape and demographics.

Below is the most interesting statistics about podcasts and podcasting over the past few years!

Around 70% of Americans are very Familiar with ‘Podcasting’

This is as high as 70% of the US population are ‘familiar’ with the ‘podcasting’ term or podcasts. That is roughly 329 million people across the USA.

32% of Americans are Monthly Podcast Listeners.

Around 32% (approx. 155 million people) listen to podcasts at least once a month (though many listen to one podcast or another much more frequently).

Around 22% of American People Listen to Podcasts on a Weekly basis.

22% of Americans (approx. 102 million people) are weekly podcast listeners (i.e. listen to podcasts at least once a week).

Podcasting Spans Over 100+ Languages Globally.

Podcasting as a whole has been growing rapidly, and as a media format, it now spans over 100 different languages across the World.

Young People (18–44 Yrs) Make Up 67% of the Podcast Global Audience.

Podcasting is way more popular among young people, with 67% of the total podcasting audience being between 18 to 44 years old.

Photo by Mohammad Metri on Unsplash

Podcasting Audience is Very Much Gender Balanced at the moment!

When it comes to gender balance, the podcasting audience is well balanced, with men leaning ever so slightly on the scale -

(52% vs. 48% for women).

Smartphones are the Most Popular for Consuming Podcasts.

Smartphones are the #1 platform for podcast consumption.

Given how popular iTunes’ podcasts (now known as Apple Podcasts) are, and given the fact that there’s a consistent decline in PC and tablet usage due to the rise of smartphones, it’s hardly a surprise that smartphones are occupying the number one spot in the podcast world.

The Average Listener Listens to 7 Different Shows Per Week.

The average podcast listener listens on average to 7 different shows in an average week and subscribes to around 5/6 different shows.

Photo by Dawid Zawiła on Unsplash

Podcast Listener Stats (USA) — Demographics.

  • 75% of the US population is familiar with the term “podcasting” — up from 70% in 2019 (Infinite Dial 2020)
  • 50% of all US homes are podcast fans (Nielsen, Aug 2017)
  • 55% (155 million) of the US population has listened to a podcast — up from 51% in 2019 (Infinite Dial 20)
  • 37% (104 million) listened to a podcast in the last month — up from 32% in 2019 (Infinite Dial 20)
  • 24% (68 million) listen to podcasts weekly — up from 22% in 2019 (Infinite Dial 20)
  • 16 million people in the US are “avid podcast fans” (Nielsen Q1 2018)
  • 51% of podcast listeners are male — same as US population (Infinite Dial 20)
  • 45% of monthly podcast listeners have household income over $75K — vs 35% for the total population
  • 27% of US podcast listeners have a 4-year college degree — vs 19% for US pop
  • 63% of podcast listeners are white — vs 58% for US pop (Infinite Dial 20)
  • Age of monthly podcast listeners versus the US population (Infinite Dial 20):
  • 12–34: 48% (vs 37%)
  • 35–54: 32% (vs 40%)
  • 55+: 20% (vs 23%)

What, When, How and Where…

  • 49% of podcast listening is done at home, down from 51% in 2017
  • 22% listen while driving (in a vehicle), same as 2017
  • Podcast listeners subscribe to an average of 6 shows in the last week (Infinite Dial 20)
  • Podcast listeners listen to an average of 7 different shows per week, up from 5 in 2017
  • 80% listen to all or most of each episode, down from 86% in 2017
  • Podcast listening on a computer went up from 29% to 31% (smartphone listening went from 71% to 69% respectively)
  • 19% of listeners increase the speed (listen faster)
  • 65% of monthly podcast listeners have been listening for less than 3 years
  • Comedy is the most popular podcasting genre, followed by education and news

Social and Tech Behavior patterns…

  • Podcast listeners are much more active on every social media channel (94% are active on at least one — vs 81% for the entire population)
  • Podcast listeners are more likely to follow companies and brands on social media
  • Podcast listeners are more likely to subscribe to Netflix or Amazon Prime (meaning they are less likely to be exposed to TV advertising)
  • Podcast listeners are more likely to own a smart speaker (Amazon Alexa or Google Home)
  • 51% of bottled water households are podcast listeners (Nielsen, Q3 2017)
  • 57% of baby food households are podcast listeners (Nielsen, Q3 2017)
  • 53% of beer households are podcast listeners (Nielsen, Q3 2017)
  • 56% of juice households are podcast fans (Nielsen, Q1 2018)
  • 54% of milk households are podcast fans (Nielsen, Q1 2018)
  • 54% of cereal households are podcast fans (Nielsen, Q1 2018)
  • 69% agreed that podcast ads made them aware of new products or services

World Podcast Statistics…

South Korea leads the world in the percentage of people who have listened to a podcast in the past month with 58%.

The podcast community is most certainly growing, so what a good time to launch your podcast on what you love discussing and debating. Wishing all podders great success!

By Peter Moore



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Peter Moore

Peter Moore


Peter has lived in New York, Los Angeles and London working in the music, film and TV industries for over three decades helping creators realize their vision.