ChatReviews Research Study
23 September 2016
Analysis of Random Chat Industry
The following research study has been conducted with the purpose of analyzing the random chat industry, specifically since the turn of the year in 2016. Throughout the study we use data which has been gained from numerous third party sources, all of which are indexed at the foot of this study. Chatreviews displays no bias towards any of the websites mentioned in this study and simply uses them to illustrate points regarding the random chat industry as a whole.
A Brief History of the Random Chat Industry
Chatting with strangers online became a major internet phenomenon in the 1990s, during which time services such as Yahoo Chat and AOL attracted millions of users. Chat rooms at this time were quite basic and featured text chat only in multiple “rooms” of various topics. In 2009, Chatroulette, a new style of connecting with strangers online was launched. The concept was simple – users would connect randomly with other people on the service via their webcam. They could see, hear, and speak to people from all over the world on a simple platform. This form of random chat instantly became a hit with Chatroulette receiving 50,000 users a day within a couple of months of launching.
Due to the success of Chatroulette, numerous other random cam chat services and websites sprung up over the following months and years. Many of these were unsuccessful, however, there are also notable sites which have become household names due to their adaptation of random chat such as Omegle, Chatrandom, Camsurf, Shagle, Dirtyroulette, ChatSpin, aFreeChat, and RouletteB to name but a few. The random chat industry continued to develop over the years and has experienced a renewed growth in interest over recent months, as this study will demonstrate.
Recent Growth of Selected Random Chat Sites
To demonstrate the huge growth in the random chat industry over the last few months, we have selected 8 random chat sites to examine. These sites cover the spectrum of random chat from moderated chat to adult chat and everything in between. The reason for the selection of a wide scope of random chat types is to demonstrate how the whole industry is growing and not just a single niche within the industry.
Each of the selected sites is presented below with data gained from both Alexa.com and Google Trends. All data was taken on September 23rd 2016 and in the case of Google Trends reflects the growth curve from January 1st 2016 for the year so far.
Omegle, Google Trends 2016
Chatrandom, Google Trends 2016
Camsurf, Google Trends 2016
Shagle, Google Trends 2016
Dirtyroulette, Google Trends 2016
Chatspin, Google Trends 2016
aFreeChat, Google Trends 2016
RouletteB, Google Trends 2016
When analyzing the data above a couple of points become very clear. The first point of note is the growth experienced by all the random chat sites this year. Each site has peaked in terms of Alexa global ranking at some point in 2016. The traffic increase towards all of the sites indicates an explosion of growth for all niches of random cam chat and not simply an increased level of interest in a single service.
The second point of note is the growth curves as presented by the Google Trends charts. Each website has seen an increased level of interest through search engines for their services. This trend reflects the industry as a whole and all search terms relating to the random chat industry as we will demonstrate later. To make analysis of the above data simpler, we have condensed the important details into the table below:
|Website||Current Alexa Rank||Highest Alexa Rank Reached in 2016?||Positive Search Engine Growth Curve in 2016?|
Growth across the Whole Random Chat Industry
As shown above, there has been tremendous growth in each of the 8 selected random chat sites over the last year. As a core sample, those sites represent the random chat industry as a whole. However, to further demonstrate the rapid increase in interest for random chat services we have gathered data for some of the main random chat industry keywords from Google Trends to show how the whole industry is currently booming and not just the 8 sites mentioned above.
"Random Chat", Google Trends 2016
"Random Cam Chat", Google Trends 2016
"Random Webcam Chat", Google Trends 2016
"Random Video Chat", Google Trends 2016
Once again, the curve data found on Google Trends indicates a spike in interest for some of the key search terms relating to the random chat industry. This data, combined with the individual website data, clearly shows the rise in demand for random cam chat services during 2016.
The data demonstrates a clear trend towards people wanting to meet and connect with new people online rather than in person. By using a random chat service, people can have less inhibitions and feel more relaxed when meeting a stranger than they would in real life when there is more pressure on an encounter. Random cam chat services also reduce the likelihood of ever coming across a person again if a user decides to move on to the next person. This function helps to eliminate any worry about being judged by a person on the other side of the webcam as they will never have to see them again if they choose.
Expectations of Continued Growth in the Random Chat Industry
The huge growth in interest in random chat displays no sign of slowing down in the near future. In fact, many services are capitalizing on the current growth by offering their users more exciting features and making it easier than ever to enjoy meeting strangers via a webcam. Sites such as Shagle, Dirtyroulette, ChatSpin, aFreeChat, and RouletteB have developed mobile friendly versions of their websites to allow users to connect on the go. Other sites such as Chatrandom and Camsurf have gone a step further and developed a mobile app which is proving incredibly popular in the Google Play app store. These developments towards mobile use are the future of the random chat industry and are highly likely to ensure continued growth for the foreseeable future.
Alexa Global Rankings