Peter Kafka

Recent Posts by Peter Kafka

Online Ad Growth: Already Over, Except for Google

Are you still thinking there might be growth in the online ad market next year? Perhaps this will disabuse you of the notion: New numbers from an industry trade group indicate that growth has already stopped for everyone except Google.

That’s not what the release from the Interactive Advertising Bureau and Pricewaterhouse says, of course. It notes, instead, that the industry notched 11 percent year-over-year U.S. revenue growth in the third quarter of this year, and two percent growth compared to last quarter, which it says indicates a “stabilized” market.

But when the trade group for an industry known for go-go growth says things have “stabilized,” you know things are grim. Here’s what “stabilized” growth looks like in graphic form (click to enlarge):

But here’s the really disturbing thought for everyone who depends on Web ad revenue, or the promise of Web ad revenue (and yes, I’m talking about my employer as well): What would that chart look like without the contributions of Google, which grew 31 percent in the last quarter (and two percent compared to the previous quarter)?

By the IAB’s own count, search revenue makes up a little less than half of its total (44 percent in Q2), and Google (GOOG), of course, accounts for the majority of that market. You do the math. Or better yet, spend that time figuring out how to stay afloat for the next year.

Latest Video

View all videos »

Search »

I think the NSA has a job to do and we need the NSA. But as (physicist) Robert Oppenheimer said, “When you see something that is technically sweet, you go ahead and do it and argue about what to do about it only after you’ve had your technical success. That is the way it was with the atomic bomb.”

— Phil Zimmerman, PGP inventor and Silent Circle co-founder, in an interview with Om Malik