Search Spending Rises Across Google, Bing

Search marketers spent between 18% and 22% more on paid-search ads during the second quarter of 2013, according to two quarterly reports released Wednesday.

At Covario, marketers in enterprise technology, consumer electronics and retail spent 22% more on paid-search ads in Q2 2013. The report suggests that global budgets rose 23% compared with the year-ago quarter.

The cost per click (CPC) rose 10% during the quarter and 24% year-on-year, driven by market and platform changes, for Covario's clients. The effectiveness of ads, measured through the click-through rates (CTRs), produced 27% better results compared with the same quarter a year ago.

Regionally, marketers in the Americas spent 8% more sequentially, and 17% compared with the year-ago quarter. In EMEA, major gains helped the region regain pace after a slow 2012, with 43% quarter-on-quarter and 73% year-on-year improvements. In Asia-Pacific, growth topped 55%, compared with slower sequential gains, but fell 1% compared with the same quarter a year ago.



As for Covario's clients, Google continues to dominate globally with 86% market share for budgets, 86% in impressions, and 62% in clicks. Advertisers spent 13% more with Google compared with the year-ago quarter.

Covario's clients also spent more for paid search on mobile devices. In fact, globally, they spent 39% more sequentially, and 132% compared with the year-ago quarter. Mobile search advertising made up 16% of total investments spent. Per device, mobile ad spend came in at 40% for smartphones and 60% for tablets.

At The Rimm-Kaufman Group, tablets and smartphones drove 28% of paid clicks, taking 22% of marketers' budgets. With desktop and laptop clicks down 7% year-over-year, 178% growth for smartphones and 115% growth for tablets drove up clicks by 12%.

Smartphone CPCs rose from 55% of desktop to 60%, as more advertisers transitioned to Google Enhanced Campaigns. The impact to total CPC growth was negligible.

RKG said Bing Ads search costs rose 58% in Q2, compared with the year-ago quarter, the third quarter in a row where its growth rate more than doubled that of Google. Bing's growth has been driven by a surge in non-brand clicks, which rose 49%, as ROI remained stable.

Google Product Listing Ads generated 33% of paid-search clicks with an average 10% lower CPC than non-brand text ads. PLAs continue to drive growth in the retail space with some sites seeing between 50% and 60% of their Google spend going to the format, according to RKG.


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