Digital ad spend on smartphones was over 50 per cent for the first time

Almost all digital ad spend growth in 2018 came from the smartphone, which increased  its share by 31.5 per cent to £6.88bn as marketers shifted their budgets into video.

The figures, from IAB UK and PwC, show budgets shifting to the smartphone from desktop and tablets. Smartphones now account for 51 per cent of all digital ad spend, outpacing desktop for the first time ever. Total digital ad spend for 2018 came in at £13.44bn, a 15 per cent increase on 2017. 

The highlights:

Video spend increased by 33 per cent to £2.3bn

– Banners increased by 13 per cent to £1.48bn

Native increased by 15 per cent to £1.19bn

Sponsored content increased 34 per cent to £167m

Outstream, meaning a ‘native video’ that autoplays in a large format player even if a content publisher doesn’t choose to publish their own news content, and a sub-sector of video grew to £1.3bn – over half of all video spend and was greater than pre-roll video for the second year running. £960m was spent on pre-mid-post ads while 76 per cent of all video is now on smartphone.

Jon Mew, CEO, IAB UK, commented, “Alongside increased investment from leading advertisers, digital advertising remains an accessible route to market for SMEs. We continue to see evidence of online advertising being used for brand-building, especially by the growing market of direct to consumer (DTC) brands.”