The issue of ad blocking is gathering pace, as record numbers of consumer choose to opt-out of receiving marketing messages. Publishers are facing challenges as their business models are at risk, with the consensus being to prohibit access to content for those who do not take part in the value exchange. Several leading voices suggest that the industry will be better off by accepting this consumer tension, tackling it by soothing privacy concerns and to make ads less irritating, therefore feel less intrusive.


Ad blocking or ad filtering is the removal of advertising content in a webpage. It is either done via a technology layer on a device or done at a network level.

Key insights

1. Lost publisher revenue from ad blocking has peaked

According to UK data, publishers lost more than £18m as a result of ad blocking in 2018, a figure that has almost doubled since 2016. However, lost revenue appears to have peaked in the second quarter and fell in the third and fourth quarters. Some mobile marketers consider ad blocking an issue of declining importance.