Mobile advertising revenue jumps 60.5% in 2016 according to new IAB research

Mobile advertising growth has continued to increase, reaching €63 billion in 2016 – a jump of 60.5% from 2015 (€39 billion). According to research by IAB Europe, the IAB and IHS Markit, the rise is likely driven by consumers opting for mobile-first as well as improving marketing technologies.

Mobile display continued to drive ad spend, reaching 64.3% in ad growth in 2016, compared to search at 61.1%. Messaging grew by 11.2% which can be seen as a testament to the rise of app messaging services.

Display ad spending reached 54% of all mobile spending worldwide, whilst search took a 42.8% share.

Kia Ling Teoh, Analyst, Technology, Media and Telecom, IHS Markit, says that the strong growth is likely due to ad tech improvements, but also standardisation of measurement, which “has helped to better capture consumer interaction with mobile ads as media consumption increasingly shifts to mobile devices. This is particularly important in emerging markets where, for many people, mobile is the first and only means of accessing the internet”.

In addition, the report highlights that North America continues to lead in terms of mobile advertising revenues reaching $38.4 billion in 2016, up from $22.2 billion in 2015. The Asia Pacific region ranks second at $27.5 billion. Meanwhile, the Middle East and Africa as well as Latin America show lots of room for growth.

However, IAB noted that there were wide differences in mobile advertising revenue by formats across regions. Display is a dominant format in Asia Pacific (63.5%), whilst North America focuses on display and search more evenly. European advertisers appear to distribute search formats slightly more heavily (51.3%) compared to display (46.1%). Messaging is big in Latin America and the Middle East and Africa.

Mobile display advertising growth was led by Latin America, followed by Asia Pacific, whilst North America took the lead for search ad growth in 2016.

Anna Bager, Senior Vice President and General Manager, Mobile and Video, IAB, adds:

“These global figures reflect brands’ recognition that mobile is critical in reaching today’s consumers around the world. We’ve experienced skyrocketing growth for mobile advertising in the US – with mobile capturing the majority of internet ad revenues for the very first time in 2016.  With mobile taking this landmark lead in digital revenues in America, it is unsurprising to see an upward trajectory the world over.”