Who Uses Check In Services?

When it comes to check ins there are three types of people: those who obsessively check in positively everywhere from the CTA to home. Then there’s the casual check in type who notifies friends when they go somewhere especially cool. And finally we have the anti-check in type who cringes at the many unsolicited location updates from their network.

check in services, check ins, facebook, foursquare

Depending on where you fit on this list, you might be surprised to hear that more American smartphone users than ever are using geosocial services like Foursquare to check in. According to a study from Pew, this year 18% of American smartphone users are using geosocial services to “check in” to certain locations, versus just 12% in 2011.

The survey also examined the demographics of those that use geosocial services, including age, income, education, gender and race.


The younger a person is, the more likely she is to use check-in services, and at the age of 50, the use of geosocial services drops significantly.

18 – 29:  23% use check in services

30 – 49:  17% use check in services

50+:  14% use check in services


The more money a person makes, the less likely she is to use geosocial services.

Less than $40,000:  23% use check in services

$40,000 – $74,999:  21% use check in services

$75,000+:  15% use check in services


The more education a person has, the less likely she is to use geolocation services.

High school grad or less:  20% use check in services

Some college:  19% use check in services

College grad:  16% use check in services


Women are slightly more likely to use geosocial services than men.

Women:  20% use check in services

Men:  17% use check in services


Hispanics are slightly more likely to use these services than African-Americans or whites.

White, non-Hispanic:  17% use check in services

Black, non-Hispanic:  21% use check in services

Hispanic:  23% use check in services

Check in users lean young, female and of lower income and education – all demographics to keep in mind when considering where geosocial services land in your brand’s digital strategy. From there, it’s important to consider the inherent value that these services have for brands, and even for individual users. What do you think? Why do some users choose to connect with brands via check ins, while others stay as far away as possible?