Search Advertising Bucks Gloom as Google Prospers

20 October 2008

NEW YORK: Online search adspend in the US rose 27% year-on-year in Q3 2008, according to search solutions provider SearchIgnite; while search agency Efficient Frontier reports that Google took almost all "new category" spending, as well as gaining share from rivals.

SearchIgnite says that retailers' spending on search rose just 1.5% versus the same period last year, but outlay increased considerably elsewhere, and conversion rates also improved for most brands.

Efficient Frontier also found that Google took $1.14 (€0.85; £0.66) for every $1 spent on search in Q3, meaning it effectively received every new dollar put into the medium, and a further 14 cents of share from its competitors.

The search giant registered 60 billion advertising impressions in the third quarter, and some 428 million resultant "clicks". 
Google, Microsoft and Yahoo also all registered improvements on their average return on investment for clients, with the notable exception of the ailing financial services sector.

A survey by Jupiter Research, however, shows that 92% of search marketers spending over $500,000 would increase their outlay by almost a quarter if buying ads was simpler.

Some 85% of respondents said managing search was getting more complicated, with 69% of this group arguing the tools provided were inadequate. Fifty-nine percent claimed they lacked the staff to increase their search usage.

Data sourced from Ad Week (US); additional content by WARC staff