Online adspend to pass £5bn by 2012

It is being predicted that even as the global economy weakens, online adspend will not and advertisers will spend £3.4bn on the medium this year, up 27%.

Internet advertising spend will continue to show double-digit growth through 2010, passing £4.3bn and going on to exceed £5bn by 2012, according to internet ad spending figures released by eMarketer.

The survey is predicting that internet advertising will hold its own in the UK, and may even consolidate gains over other media during the economic decline, according to eMarketer's "UK Online Advertising: Reaching Maturity" report.

The tightening of budgets works in favour of digital adspend, the report argues, because of the greater accountability, and value for money, of online channels in comparison with television, print and other traditional media.

It predicts that the internet will surpass television in market share of UK advertising in 2010.

The value placed on accountability is reflected in the rise of search based advertising, which now outstrips online display advertising although both up sharply last year.

Search-related marketing accounted for 50% of all UK online advertising spending in 2006, and 60% in 2007, according to eMarketer calculations. UK spending on search rose 57% between 2006 and 2007 and will top £3bn in 2012.

Karin von Abrams, senior analyst and author of the report at eMarketer, said: "While the rate of growth in search-related spending is falling slightly as the market evolves, annual growth is still remarkable."

The new figures seem to confirm the UK's dominance online in Europe where it leads in terms of internet advertising with online spending accounting for a far higher proportion of total advertising spending in the UK than in almost any other European.

eMarketer benchmarks its UK online ad spending projections against the Interactive Advertising Bureau UK/PricewaterhouseCoopers data.

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