On Thursday, the Interactive Advertising Bureau (IAB), with the help of PwC US, released its “IAB Internet Advertising Revenue Report” for the first six months of 2012.
Among the findings is that total Internet ad revenues in the U.S. hit $17.0 billion in the first half of the year, an all-time high. Lead generation accounted for 5 percent of total revenues during the first half of 2012.
The $17.0 billion in total Internet ad revenues reflected a 14 percent increase from the $14.9 billion reported during the first half of last year. Internet ad revenues totaled $8.7 billion in the second quarter of 2012, up 5 percent from the $8.3 billion in revenues in the first quarter.
The mobile category saw spending nearly double year-over-year, as revenues in the category totaled $1.2 billion in the first half of the year, or 7 percent of total spending. This is up 95 percent from the $636 million in the same period last year.
“The tremendous growth of mobile advertising revenue over the past year is an indication of the importance of location to advertisers and mobility to consumers,” said David Silverman, partner at PwC, in the report.
Search revenues led all categories, accounting for 48 percent of the total in the first half of 2012, or $8.1 billion. This is up 19 percent from the $6.8 billion mark in the first half of 2011. The search category also saw its share of total spending tick up two percentage points year-over-year.
Display-related advertising revenues accounted for 21 percent of the total in the first half of the year, or $5.6 billion. This is up 4 percent from the $5.3 billion in revenues the category saw in the first half of 2011. Of the total in the first half of 2012, $3.6 billion is attributed to banner ads, $1.1 billion to digital video commercials, $495 million to rich media and $416 million to sponsorships.
Classifieds accounted for 7 percent of the total revenues in the first half of 2012, or $1.2 billion. This was down slightly from the category’s revenues in the first half of last year.
Lead generation accounted for 5 percent of the total Internet ad revenues in the first half of the year, or $834 million. This reflected a 4 percent increases from the $800 million the category accounted for in the same period last year.
Email revenues totaled $78 million in the first half of 2012, or 0.5 percent of the total. This is down 1 percent from the $79 million the category accounted for in the first half of 2011.
IAB also reported that 67 percent of revenues in the first half of 2012 were priced on a performance basis, up from 64 percent I the first half of 2011. Meanwhile, 31 percent of revenues were priced on a cost-per-medium/thousand (CPM) or impression basis, unchanged from the share that pricing model had in the first half of last year. The remaining 2 percent of revenues were priced on a hybrid basis, down from 5 percent in the same period last year.
Retail advertisers represented 20 percent of total Internet ad spending in the first half of 2012, according to IAB, down from 23 percent in the first half of last year. Financial services accounted for 13 percent, followed by auto with 13 percent and telecom with 12 percent.
“Applying historical seasonal data, the 2012 first six months’ revenues of $17.0 billion are on an annual run-rate to make 2012 the highest annual year, exceeding the $31.7 billion in 2011, the previous highest annual total,” IAB notes in the report.
By Jason Hahn