NEW YORK: Online adspend in the US reached a record $12.1bn (€8.7bn; £7.6bn) during the first six months of this year, new figures show.

Industry body the IAB and consultancy PricewaterhouseCoopers estimated that internet advertising expenditure climbed 11.3% year-on-year in the opening six months of 2010.

"Consumers' appetite for immersive online experiences is limitless as technological innovation and creativity give rise to new forms of entertainment and information in the digital age," said Randall Rothenberg, the IAB's president/ceo.

"This report highlights marketers' ongoing adoption of interactive media to build brands - and that's only going to continue."

Display ads - including banners, rich media, digital video and sponsorship - were worth in excess of $4.4bn, an uptick nearing 16%, while digital video returns soared 31% in the same period.

At 47%, paid search retained the largest share of brand owners' web outlay, taking over $5.7bn in sales, an 11.6% improvement annually.

"Interactive advertising revenue is on a strong upward trajectory," said Sherrill Mane, the IAB's senior vice president, industry services.

"Nearly all types of ad formats are showing positive movement and marketers across all advertising categories, most notably consumer packaged goods and pharmaceuticals, are increasing their investment in digital media."

David Silverman, assurance partner at PwC, added: "With the strongest first half on record, 2010 has so far indicated that Internet advertising is back, and better than ever."

"While the recession clearly affected short term growth in 2009, with double digit growth in both search and display during the first six month of 2010, the long term prospects continue to be strong."

Data sourced from IAB; additional content by Warc staff