online digital advertising

Online advertising has come a long way in the relatively short existence of the web. Today’s ads come in a variety of shapes, sizes and forms, from simple text to interactive multimedia. Here are 15 online advertising statistics about ad spending, revenues, consumer perception and more.


  1. U.S. advertisers spent over $37 billion on digital advertising in 2012, which amounted to 22% of all ad spending.


  1. Over half of U.S. consumers describe online advertising as “annoying” (68%) and “distracting” (51%).


  1. 36% of consumers and 49% of marketers consider advertising created by professional marketers the most effective form of advertising. 28% of consumers and 27% of marketers, however, believe that user-generated content is most effective.


  1. Earning the consumer’s trust is particularly important when it comes to online advertising. Only 40% of consumers say that they trust ads served by search engines somewhat or completely. 36% trust online video ads and ads on social networks, 33% trust online banner ads and mobile display ads, and 29% trust mobile text ads.


  1. Although 33% of social media users say that ads on social networking sites are more annoying than other online ads, 17% feel more connected to brands that they see on these sites.


  1. 15% of social network users have shared ads on social networks, and 26% have liked such ads.


  1. 14% of social network users have purchased a product as a result of a social ad. 10% purchased a product online, and 8% made a purchase at a store. Also, 18% of users purchased or obtained a coupon as a result of a social ad.


  1. Ad click-through rates vary by browser. Opera users have the highest click-through rate at 2.12%, followed by Safari Mobile users (1.54%) and Internet Explorer users (1.14%).


  1. In the third quarter of 2012, U.S. online advertising revenues reached a record $9.26 billion. This represented an 18% year-over-year increase.


  1. North America is the region that spends the most on online advertising, accounting for 41.7% of global ad spending in 2011. Western Europe comes in second at 28.8%, and Asia-Pacific is third with 24.1%.


  1. Search ads make up 49% of all online advertising. 23% of online advertisements are banner ads, 8% are classifieds, 5% are lead generation ads, 6% are digital videos, 5% are rich media, 3% are sponsorships, and 1% are email ads.


  1. When it comes to online advertising market share, Google is on top with 44.1%. Yahoo and Microsoft claim 12.3%, Facebook has 3.1%, and AOL has 1.5%.


  1. According to a 2012 report by BIA/Kelsey, social media ad spending is forecasted to reach $9.8 billion in 2016, demonstrating a compound growth rate of 21% per year.$9.8-Billion-by-2016.asp


  1. 72.8% of marketers responding to a 2012 Ad Age survey said that they expected their social media advertising budget to increase over the next year. 25.3% expected it to stay the same, and 1.9% expected it to decrease.


  1. A study by AdParlor found that click-through rates for mobile Facebook ads were about 15 times higher than those for non-mobile Facebook ads (1.32% and 0.086% respectively). However, the study also found that mobile ads had a lower conversion rate than non-mobile ads (68.4% compared to 84.16%).

As these statistics illustrate, online advertising has become more complex over the years, but there is still plenty of value in tried and true formats such as paid search. The key is to carefully target your ads so that they reach the right audience and entice them to take action.