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$16bn by 2009

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Spending in online advertising is predicted to balloon to more than $16bn (£8.7bn) over the next five years as advertisers become increasingly more confident using the Net.

The online ad market is currently worth around $6.6bn (£3.6bn), according to JupiterResearch. But with a 30 per cent growth in paid search over the next two years and display ads and online classifieds expected to increased by 25 per cent as well, analysts predict that toal spending will hit $16.1bn by 2009.

Much of this growth is down to increasing confidence by advertsisers who are now better able to target consumers and measure the performace of campaigns.

Said Gary Stein, a senior snalyst at JupiterResearch: "The growth in online advertising is the product of all the progress that websites and technology providers have made in the last two years. We've seen companies very actively working to make the Internet a more attractive advertising medium.

"With targeting technologies, the discovery of search by major advertisers, and real measurement and planning tools, the Internet is ready to fulfill its early promises of effectiveness, reach and trackability."

This optimism in Internet ads was echoed by online marketing outfit dealgroupmedia (it runs campaigns for the likes of BT Yahoo! Broadband, BT Yahoo! Internet, NTL, Tiscali and Virgin.net) which reported that online ads were a cracking way of recruiting new broadband punters. Said dealgroupmedia COO, Nicky Iapino: "The rise in broadband sales through Internet advertising even outstrips the overall growth of broadband and is clearly helping to fuel the growth of high speed Internet access. The surge in sales not only reflects the growing demand for broadband, but clearly shows the effectiveness of online advertising, where the metrics can provide advertisers with concrete evidence of their return on investment.

"Consumers are becoming increasingly confident of the security of making online purchases, while a great deal of work has been done by creatives, IT and marketing people, to ease the entire purchase process online. With more people, getting faster access, the outlook for continued growth of internet usage and purchasing is very rosy indeed." ®

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