Study: Mobile Search Is Way Up, Google Leads Search CPC Decrease

Written on
Jan 11, 2012 
Brian LaRue  |

ADOTAS – The Q4 Digital Media Report from digital marketing suite IgnitionOne confirms a what a lot of folks have understandably expected: Mobile search is on the rise. Search ad spend is up. Search cost-per-click is down. Google continues to lead the search market, and there’s been an increase in both spending and impressions in Google display ads. Unless you have a contrarian streak, you probably shouldn’t be surprised.

The big reveal is in the specific numbers — especially the mobile stats. According to the report (which was compiled from fourth-quarter 2011 data and compared to past data gathered by IgnitionOne — the company’s tracked over 49 billion impressions and 1.7 billion clicks over major search and display networks since 2006), mobile search ad impressions are up 317 percent and ad spend is up 269 percent, year-over-year. Among retailers, mobile search ad spend in 2010 accounted for 5.2 percent of total paid search budgets, and that percentage spiked to 14.2 percent in 2011. Retail search ad spend peaked on Black Friday — 24 percent of spend went to mobile queries that day.

The report also declared the fourth quarter of 2011 the “best quarter ever” for search advertising, with search ad spend up 22 percent year-over-year (26 percent for retailers), and an increase of 42 percent for impressions and clicks and 67 for transactions. Cost per click decreased 8.6 year-over-year — though CPC actually increased 6.4 percent for Yahoo!/Bing. That demonstrates, the report’s abstract pointed out, Google’s success drove the trends in decreasing CPC.  Google also commanded an 81.8 percent market share, and its DoubleClick AdExchange posted a 105.5 percent increase in spend.

The full report, issued today, can be found at IgnitionOne’s website.

Adotas Senior Editor Brian LaRue has been working in journalism in some form or another for slightly longer than his entire adult life, having won his first SPJ (Society of Professional Journalists) Award while he was still in high school. Prior to joining Adotas, he served as a reporter, editor, columnist, critic and blogger, mostly for a number of daily and weekly newspapers scattered around his native Connecticut. In his off hours, Brian maintains an active parallel life as a musician and music blogger.

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