2016 sees mobile account for over half of internet advertising revenue for first time

Posted by Rebecca Appleton on 3 May, 2017
View comments Marketing
The latest report by the Interactive Advertising Board (IAB) states that mobile advertising made up an impressive 51% of the digital market share last year.

According to the latest report released by the Interactive Advertising Board (IAB) mobile advertising made up 51% of the digital market share in 2016. Part of the record $72.5 billion spent last year on advertising, the figure showcases just how much confidence there is in mobile advertising, and of course, what ROI is available for savvy marketers.

digital ads

The mobile spend of $36.6 billion represents a huge 77% upturn from the $20.7 billion spent in 2015 and highlights digital’s ability to reach potential customers on the go.

The IAB’s Internet Advertising Report, issued twice a year for full and half year data, is designed to provide marketers and advertisers with the information needed to make good, forward-thinking, digital-focused decisions.

Other notable points from the report include:

  • Digital video hit a record $9.1 billion in 2016, which is a 53% year-over-year rise from 2015.
  • On mobile devices video revenue more than doubled. Up 145% from 2015, it tipped to nearly $4.2 billion
  • Social media advertising generated 50% more money than 2015. Up from $10.9 billion, social media accounted for an impressive $16.3 billion.
  • Search revenues reached almost $35 billion in 2016 – which is up 19% from 2015.
  • Digital audio brought in revenues of $1.1 billion in 2016, the first year it was measured.
  • Retail continued to have the largest category share with 21.3% of internet ad spend in 2016, closely followed by financial services (13.3%), and automotive (12.5%). Media was up 13% on 2015 with 5.2%.

Randall Rothenberg, IAB President and CEO, said mobile had fueled the internet economy in 2016, with brands making “an ongoing marketing shift from ‘mobile-first’ to ‘mobile-only’ in order to keep pace with today’s on-the-go consumers.”

The report, as well as documenting increases across the board, also noted that Q4 of 2016 performed particularly strongly for the digital landscape. Hitting a record $21.6 billion, an increase of more than 24% year-over-year, it has perhaps set the scene for 2017.

Providing more opportunities to keep pace with the world’s on-the-go consumers, mobile, video and social media have redefined the digital landscape and opened up new ways to attract consumers, unavailable even just a decade ago. 

With Google also clearly seeing the future as mobile - announcing the creation of a separate mobile index and continuing to promote mobile friendly features such as AMP (accelerated mobile pages) - it seems the continued shift to mobile is unstoppable.

See more details of the IBA report here.

Has your company moved more towards mobile advertising? Have you reaped the benefits? Let us know in the comments!

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