SAN DIEGO: Global mobile search spending in the second quarter of 2014 was double that of the same period in 2013, new data have revealed, pushing its share to one quarter of all paid search spending.

The Global Paid Search Spend Analysis, showed that spending by clients of search and content marketing firm Covario – including enterprise technology, B2B, consumer electronics, and retail – surged 98% year-on-year although the quarter-on-quarter figure was more modest at just 6%. The total was split 62:38 between tablet and smartphone.

Click-through rates (CTRs) for all desktop and mobile devices rose 39% over the same quarter a year ago, while cost-per-click (CPC) prices edged up 2.4% during the quarter and 12% compared to the second quarter of 2013.

Alex Funk, Covario's director of global paid media strategy, thought this was due "in large part to the increased desktop competition for the falling impression levels buoyed by higher performing ad units".

The Americas region, led by paid search investments in the US, Canada, Mexico, Chile and Brazil, saw a 31% year-on-year increase in search spending, but little change from the first quarter. Funk encouraged advertisers to budget for a 15-20% increase in PPC spending across the region during the rest of the year.

In Europe, the Middle East and Africa (EMEA), search spending saw the greatest advances in Germany, the UK, France and Scandinavia, but overall the gains were limited, being up a mere 3% on the second quarter of 2013 and 5% on the first quarter.

Second quarter search ad spending in the Asia-Pacific region was even more muted growing just 1% year-on-year and 6% percent quarter-on-quarter. Funk noted a 9% increase in click volume and a 23% increase in ad effectiveness, although these were offset by a 7% decline in CPCs. He advised advertisers to direct investment towards China, South Korea, Japan, Australia, and New Zealand.

Among the major search engines globally, Google commanded 86% of total paid search spend, 73% of global impressions and 63% of clicks worldwide. Bing was a player in the US, Yandex in Russia and Baidu in China.

Data sourced from Covario; additional content by Warc staff