French, Spanish, British and Germans, how are they different?

Published on 23/01/2023

1. Germany, France, UK or Spain: who spends more time on social media?

Every day, almost 7 hours are spent on the Internet worldwide. Most users spend much of this time on social networks. This results in an estimated average time spent on social networks worldwide of 2 hours and 29 minutes per day. The British are actually at the top of the table among the 4; a British person spends an average of 1 hour and 48 minutes on social media, the French are just behind with an average of 1 hour and 46 minutes per day. The Spanish people spend 1 hour and 39 minutes. The Germans have a lower average of 1 hour and 29 minutes per person. If you’d like to learn more about the global daily use of social media by enterprises in Europe, we recommend this article published by the Eurostat Social media - statistics on the use by enterprises.

2. Which social media platforms are the most popular ones in each nation?

The most popular social networks in the world in 2022 are Tiktok, YouTube, Facebook, WhatsApp and Instagram, according to Statista's ranking of the most popular social networks worldwide, by number of active users.

French people prefer to spend their time on Facebook, Snapchat, WhatsApp, Instagram, Messenger or TikTok. Spanish people are more likely to use WhatsApp, Spotify or Instagram. The favourite social networks of a British person are Facebook, YouTube, Twitter and Tiktok. Finally, a German preferably uses Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and Xing. Overall, we find the same social networks: Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.

Internet and social networks are increasingly used, especially since the pandemic, as users take advantage of them to keep in touch with their loved ones, for entertainment or to get access to information. The share of people using the Internet for work has also increased.

More and more people are playing video games, listening to music, downloading and watching movies or series, reading content, or doing any other type of online activity. Some even take distance learning courses, whether it is a specific subject or even sportscourses. It also explains why the number of hours spent on the internet is increasing every year, and why it is worthwhile for a company to go digital.

3. What are their consumer habits?

Do you think that the French can drink more beer than the Germans? Think again! Of these 4 countries, Germans are the biggest beer drinkers with 106.1 litres per person per year. The English people drink 68.5 litres, and the Spanish 68.4 litres. The French prefer wine to beer, consuming only 30 litres of beer per person per year. As you can imagine, France consumes more wine than the others with a total of 25.2 million hectolitres, compared to 19.8 million, 13.4 million and 10.5 million respectively for Germany, the UK and Spain.

If you are looking for a new market to sell beer, you now know that France is not necessarily the best country for it! We recommend Germany instead.

4. Who does the most online shopping?

If you want to enter a foreign market, e-commerce can be very useful. That's why you should know that the UK has the highest e-commerce penetration in the world. Consumers prefer to buy online because it has many advantages, they don't need to travel, and they don't have time constraints to respect: they can buy what they want, where they want and when they want!

5. What are the products most purchased online by Germans, French, Spanish or British?

All countries are increasingly using e-commerce, and the Covid-19 crisis has also encouraged its development. However, each country has its own consumer preferences when it comes to buying on the Internet. A French person is more likely to buy fashion or beauty products, and a Brit person is more likely to buy clothing. The Spanish, on the other hand, are more interested in buying tickets for tickets for travel online, but still prefer to buy clothes directly in the shop. A German buys more electronic products on the Internet. As they all have different consumer preferences, if you want to expand abroad, you will need to analyse the different target markets carefully to know which one to expand into and also to develop your persona.

6. And who speaks the best English?

Of course the British people are the ones who speak their language the best, but of the Spanish, Germans or French, who does best? Is there any truth to the cliché that the French can't speak English? The Germans are the most proficient in English with an EF EPI (EF English Proficiency Index) score of 613, showing a very high level of proficiency. Next is Spain with a score of 545, which places it in the category of countries with high English proficiency . The French are not as bad at English as we might think, scoring 541 and joining Spain in the high English proficiency category. English is the most widely spoken foreign language in many European countries, including France, Spain and Germany. If you want to find out more about this topic, read our article What are the most widely spoken languages in the European Union? English in the world is becoming increasingly important, especially with the Internet, and with its strong presence in the film and music culture. English is also the language of trade and technology, as you can see in our article The most widely used languages on the Internet.

The French, Spanish, Germans and British are therefore very different, particularly in terms of their consumption habits. We can find similarities, but there are still some aspects to distinguish them.

If you need to communicate with the Spanish, German or English speaking markets, don't hesitate to call on our translation service to translate your websites, your advertising campaigns or anything else in order to establish yourself in a new market! Get in touch with us calling +44 20 80 89 58 22 or by e-mail.

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Emeline PADIEU's picture
Emeline PADIEU

Emeline holds a Master's degree in Applied Foreign Languages, specialising in International Management and International Trade Techniques. She completed her end-of-studies internship at AbroadLink Translations and now works there as a sales and marketing assistant

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