Global mobile ad spend up 75%: Facebook catching Google

25/03/2014

Facebook's global mobile ad market share is catching Google, as the two internet giants account for two thirds of all mobile ad spend during 2013- pushing overall growth to a massive 75%, according to new data.

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The study, from eMarketer, indicates Google, took 49.3% of total mobile ad sales amounting to $17.96bn in 2013.

By contrast, rival Facebook took just 17.5% in 2013, an improvement of over 12 percentage points on its 5.4% share of worldwide mobile ad spending the previous year.

"Google still owns a plurality of the mobile advertising market worldwide, taking a portion of nearly 50 per cent in 2013, but the rapid growth of Facebook will cause the search giant's share to drop to 46.8 per cent in 2014, eMarketer estimates," it said in the report.

Facebook rises as Google mobile growth stalls

According to Facebook's Q4 2013 results, the mobile ad revenue represented about 53 per cent of advertising revenue, up from around 23 per cent of advertising revenue in the fourth quarter of 2012. Revenue from advertising was USD 2.34 billion in the fourth quarter of 2013.

"Facebook in particular is gaining significant market share. In 2012, the social network accounted for just 5.4 per cent of the global advertising market. In 2013, that share increased to 17.5 per cent and eMarketer predicts it will rise again this year to 21.7 per cent," the research firm said.

Facebook's mobile ad revenues are forecast to improve to 21.7 percent this year, according to the report.

In contrast, analysts expect Google's share to drop this year, albeit only slightly. But Google's sales share for 2013 was smaller than that for 2012 and a further drop will give Google two straight years of falling sales.

Facebook is keeping it close against Google and its $19 billion acquisition of smartphone messaging service WhatsApp confirmed its intent on becoming a pivotal player in the mobile world. Facebook's acquisition of WhatsApp reflects a structural shift towards mobile by Internet and related technology industries.

Combined, the two companies (Facebook and Google) saw net mobile ad revenues increase by USD 6.92 billion, claiming 75.2 per cent of the additional USD 9.2 billion that went towards mobile in 2013.

Microsoft also sees its future in mobile and put its money where its mouth is with a $7.5 billion takeover of Nokia's loss-making mobile phone division.

Mobile marketing ad spend continues to soar

Google and Facebook together accounted for more than two-thirds of last year's $17.96 billion in mobile ad sales worldwide. Mobile ad spending worldwide rocketed skywards by 105 percent last year and is forecast to jump another 75 percent this year to $31.45 billion.

"In 2014, mobile is on pace to rise another 75.1 per cent to USD 31.45 billion, accounting for nearly one-quarter of total digital ad spending worldwide," eMarketer projected.

"The two companies are consolidating their places at the top of the market, accounting for more than two-thirds of mobile ad spending last year, a figure that will increase slightly this year," it said.

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