Keyword sponsorships continue to lead demand accounting for 51 percent or AU$442.6 million of the total revenue. This is followed by online directories (valued at AU$263.9 million) and contextual searches (AU$163.2 million). The findings were released in the latest digital media advertising research from Frost & Sullivan, Australia Search Advertising Market 2008-2012.
The study identifies that 75 percent of advertisers are now spending more than ten percent of their total media budget on search related activities. This compares with 65 percent of advertisers twelve months ago. Frost & Sullivan ICT director, Andrew Milroy states, “Advertisers are clearly increasing the amount of money being allocated to search and this is occurring at the expense of other media budgets. We expect this will have a direct impact on traditional media spend over the next one or two years.”
This reallocation of budgets towards search is likely to be exacerbated by the current financial turmoil. With marketing activity as a whole predicted to slow, Frost & Sullivan suggests that advertisers will turn to search advertising because of its greater cost-effectiveness. However, the study cautions that some industries are clearly experiencing weaker levels of success with search advertising and there are signs that return on investment levels are beginning to decrease.
Competition for search advertising budgets also decreased significantly during 2008 due to market consolidation in both the search engine and directories markets. Although further consolidation is expected in 2009 the study concludes that it is not yet clear what effect this will have on advertiser activity, if any.
Australia's leading paid search advertisers include the travel and accommodation, media and entertainment, and banking, finance and insurance industries. Together, these segments contributed 56 percent of search revenues throughout the year.
The study also confirmed that the clear market leader for search advertising remains Google, which captured 62 percent revenue share of the total 2008 online search advertising market.
About the study
Australia Search Advertising Market 2008-2012 forms part of the Frost & Sullivan Digital Media Advertising Program 2008 subscription. The study analyses search engine and online directories advertising performance within Australia over the past twelve months and includes market sizing and behaviour projects through to 2012. Data for the research is drawn from interviews with major publisher groups, advertising network brokers, independent publishers and major media agencies. Input is also drawn from advertiser surveys conducted with 240 senior management-level executives with control or insight into the business' marketing budget.
Interviews with the press are available.
Frost & Sullivan, the Growth Partnership Company, partners with clients to accelerate their growth. The company's TEAM Research, Growth Consulting and Growth Team Membership empower clients to create a growth-focused culture that generates, evaluates and implements effective growth strategies. Frost & Sullivan employs over 45 years of experience in partnering with Global 1000 companies, emerging businesses and the investment community from more than 30 offices on six continents.