One-Eighth of Global Online Ad Spending Growth Is Going to This Surprising Company

September 28, 2017

This article is included in these additional categories:

Advertising Trends | Brand-Related | Digital | Industries | Retail & E-Commerce | Spending & Spenders | Top Brands

It’s no surprise that Google and Facebook are hogging global online ad revenues. After all, together the two companies control an estimated 20% of all global ad spending. In a new data release, though, Forrester points to an unlikely third wheel: Alibaba.

Forrester found that in Q2, Google and Facebook accounted for almost three-quarters (74%) of online ad revenues among 13 large companies that it tracks. Those 13 large companies in turn comprise roughly three-quarters of all global online advertising revenues.

The third company on the list of those top 13? Alibaba, which took home 9% share of those large companies’ online ad revenues, or close to 7% of all global online ad revenues.

To put that in context, Forrester says that Alibaba’s Q2 online ad revenues were almost double that of Baidu and Tencent (WeChat owner), combined. (Those were the 4th- and 14th-largest media owners last year, respectively, according to Zenith. Zenith’s list did not appear to track Alibaba.)

Alibaba’s ad revenue growth is outpacing its market share, too. In Q2, it accounted for 16% of online ad revenue growth for the large companies tracked by Forrester, which in turn works out to 12% of all global online ad revenue growth.

Forrester’s analyst notes that Alibaba’s role indicates the power of combining e-commerce with advertising. The other company that immediately comes to mind? Amazon, which has been promoting its advertising services of late.

Amazon’s US advertising revenue is expected to reach $1.65 billion this year, according to new eMarketer estimates, before almost doubling to $3.2 billion in 2019. By that point, its ad revenues are expected to be as large as Snapchat and Twitter, combined.


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