Depression is a common illness worldwide. Acupuncture is used as an alternative to non-pharmacological therapy. This study aimed to identify the development and global trends in the study of acupuncture therapy for depression over the past two decades using a bibliometric analysis. Articles published between 2001 and 2020 on acupuncture for depression were retrieved from the Web of Science database. Extracted information included authors, organizations, countries, keywords, and journals. The VOSviewer program was used to visualize the impacts and network hubs of the keywords, authors, and affiliations. Analyses of 871 original and review articles revealed that the number of publications has continually increased over the past 20 years. China has published the maximum number of articles, followed by the United States and South Korea. As for research areas, integrative complementary medicine was most well represented in terms of the number of articles. Co-occurrence analysis of keywords indicated that each five sub-group cluster (including "pain related to depressive symptoms," "CAM therapies of depression," "comorbid disease or symptoms of depression," "clinical trials of depression," and "mechanism of acupuncture on depression") has its own impact keyword. The most recent keywords were "protocol" and "systematic review," whereas early keywords were "acupuncture analgesia" and "St john's wort." Co-authorship analysis of authors and organizations revealed 4 influential authors and 2 organizations in the field of acupuncture for depression. The present study provided influential keywords that show comorbid symptoms, treatments, and mechanism. Additionally, it revealed the influential persons or groups related to acupuncture therapy for depression.