Commentary

Mobile Slowing Ad-Blocker Use Among Millennials

The following was previously published in an earlier edition of Moblog.

Among other factors, marketers can thank mobile for slowing the adoption of ad blockers among millennials.

That’s because mobile ad blockers are often not as effective on mobile -- and especially within apps -- as they are on desktops and laptops, eMarketer notes in a report. 

This year, 20.1% of U.S. consumers will block ads on desktops and laptops, while just 7.9% will do so on smartphones -- even though adults spend more time per day with mobile than with desktops and laptops -- the research firm finds.

That mobile is slowing the use of ad blockers among millennials is a big deal. That’s because young people love ad blockers almost as much as they love spending money, according to eMarketer forecasting analyst Shelleen Shum.

“Millennials are more likely to have an ad blocker enabled than those in any other demographic group,” Shum notes in a new report. “Those in this group are more tech-savvy than older adults, more willing to adopt new technology and tend to spend more time on the Internet browsing and watching videos.”

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This year, 36.68 million millennials (41.1% of those born between 1981 and 2000) will browse the Web on a device that has an ad blocker enabled, Shum and her colleagues predict.

Within that generation, 18-24-year-olds are the heaviest users of ad blockers. Indeed, 49.9% of them will use one (or 51% of Web users within that age group).

In the early days of ad blocking, penetration rates among 18-24-year-olds and 25-34-year-olds were similar, Shum notes. However, the gap is widening as the younger group adopts them in greater numbers.

More broadly, eMarketer is reining in its growth forecast for ad-blockers. Stateside, the firm now expects that their use will grow 16.2%, this year, to 75.11 million users -- slightly lower than the 85 million it forecasts in June.

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