Mobile app ad impressions trump web in the US – but not so much the rest of the world

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The mobile advertising market is expanding, led by the US at 42%, followed by APAC (29%) and Europe (10%). However, the source of mobile ad impressions varies greatly by region, according to the latest State of Mobile Advertising 2015 report by Opera Mediaworks. Based on 1.1bn unique users across 19,000 sites and apps, the research finds that apps are still driving ad traffic (55.94%) and revenue (70.91%) overall.

Global share of app versus web

Source: operamediaworks.com

However, apps are only leading the field in the US and Oceania, whilst the rest of the world prefer their ads on mobile web. Africa is fairly new to the mobile ad market and hence web impressions still play a greater role here. Somewhat unexplained are findings as to why APAC prefer web over apps. However, this may be due to Opera Mediaworks being largely US-based.

App versus web by region

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Source: operamediaworks.com

The study further highlights the rise of mobile video advertising. Oceania has already successfully adopted the standard, with Australia leading the ratio of video/ad impressions. Japan, Germany and Canada are also interested in mobile video ads.

Mobile video advertising ratio across 8 countries

Source: operamediaworks.com

Opera Mediaworks also examined the first and last app of the day of US smartphone users and found that social media led in the morning, whilst most consumers finished off their days with entertainment apps. Important for marketers, games generate the highest effective Cost Per Thousand Impressions (eCPM), but lack in impression volume. Games also more heavily rely on video advertising with 50% of all ads being video. Entertainment found a larger audience, generated slightly less impressions than social, but scored a higher eCPM. Whilst social media campaigns favour simple banner ads, entertainment apps feature premium banners and rich media campaigns.

Top mobile app categories for monetisation

Source: operamediaworks.com

Given these findings, it is clear that marketers may need to further refocus campaigns targeting the right regions by app type at the right time of day.