SINGAPORE: Mobile search advertising is growing rapidly in Asia-Pacific and Japan (APJ), with a new Q3 report indicating a 61% year-on-year rise in spending on smartphones and a tripling of impressions.

The figures come from Kenshoo, a marketing software provider, which tracked data from more than 3,000 advertiser and agency accounts across 20 vertical industries and over 70 countries, spanning the Google, Bing, Baidu, Yahoo!, Yahoo! Japan, and Facebook ad networks.

Across the Asia-Pacific and Japan region, spending on paid search advertising rose 13% over the 12 months to the end of September, Campaign Asia-Pacific reported. And with most of that had come from smartphones (+61%); desktop spending increased just 4% and tablet spending a mere 2%.

The total number of impressions was up 24% and, again, this figure hid the stellar performance of smartphones, which registered a 204% year-on-year increase, while both desktops and tablets had declined, -11% and -8% respectively.

Click growth stood at 22% overall; it was unchanged for tablets, up 5% for desktops and had almost doubled (+98%) for smartphones.

Search advertising's share of mobile spend in the region now stands at 42%, according to Kenshoo, up from 35% a year earlier, while search accounts for 55% of clicks from mobile devices, up from 44%.

"Mobile continues to be the most exciting area of growth in both social and search advertising," said Yukihiko Imamura, Kenshoo managing director for Asia-Pacific and Japan.

"We are seeing large brand advertisers … moving quickly to allocate more budget to mobile search advertising and we expect social advertising to boom in 2016," he added.

Globally, paid social advertising continues to grow as new entrants come into the market and existing marketers raise budgets. Kenshoo reported social ad spend had increased 112% in the past year.

At the same time social campaigns appear to be delivering improvements in engagement levels as click-through rates had climbed steadily over the past five quarters and have risen 174% in the past year.

Data sourced from Campaign Asia-Pacific; additional content by Warc staff