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UK online ad spend: puny but growing fast

Revenues more than double

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Online advertising sales in Britain leapt 122 per cent in Q2 1999 compared to Q1, according to the latest detailed survey by Pricewaterhouse Coopers for the Internet Advertising Bureau (IAB). Although the percentage increase sounds impressive, in monetary terms ad spend only increased from £7.9 million to £17.3 million between Q1 and Q2 last year. No matter, say the authors of the study, who reckon these figures are proof positive that advertisers in Britain are beginning to trust the Net. They claim larger sites are now making increasing use of sophisticated ad serving technology, which allows them to achieve broad reach and also to target their advertising. Tom Bowman, chair of market statistics at the IAB, said: "In a market that has more than doubled, ad banners continue to be the tool of choice for advertisers. "These statistics reinforce the power of banner advertising and silence any claims that this medium is no longer the lynchpin of Internet advertising spend. "With revenue of £17.3 million in only the first half of 1999 we expect that the second quarter of 1999 will surpass all expectations," he said. Last year total ad spend in Britain reached a wallet-bursting £13 billion ($20.8 billion), which makes online ad spending a mere single byte in an hour-long sequence of streaming video. ®

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