Amazon Takes Google Ad Market Share, Microsoft Advertising Holds Strong

Amazon top-of-search ad placements accounted for just 3% of impressions, but 35% of clicks and 45% of spend during the second quarter of 2019, according to data released Tuesday.

The company’s revenue growth from ads continues to outpace others, rising 102% for Sponsored Products and 53% for Sponsored Brands, formerly known as Headline Search Ads, Merkle reported.

The data from its Q2 2019 Digital Marketing Report (DMR) estimates that Sponsored Products now accounts for 86% of all non-display Amazon ad spend. Product details pages accounted for 82% of Sponsored Products impressions, but just 40% of clicks.

Not surprisingly, brand keywords play an interesting role on Amazon, accounting for 43% of Sponsored Products sales and 62% of Sponsored Brands sales. Brand keywords accounted for 62% of sales revenue attributed to Sponsored Brands and 43% for Sponsored Products, surpassing 32% and 30% click shares that these keywords generate for each format, respectively.

Microsoft’s Bing Product Ad format, which picked up the Yahoo inventory, delivered its strongest desktop spending growth in more than three years during the second quarter of 2019.

The company also gained search ad traffic that Yahoo served through its Gemini platform and managed to reverse a year-over-year spend decline in the first quarter of 2019 to deliver 16% overall growth in the second quarter. Between Microsoft and Yahoo combined, spend rose 8% year-over-year.

Google experienced weaker results in the second quarter of 2019. While marketers spent 15% more on Google in the quarter, spending growth slowed from the prior quarter. Click growth came in slightly weaker at 10%, while CPC growth held steady at 4.5%.

Google Shopping remained the company ad-growth engine. Advertisers spent 38% on Shopping compared with the previous year. New image-focused Discovery and Gallery ads announced in May spiked the uptick, along with variants like Showcase Shopping ads. Marketers have been looking for more visually compelling ads.

On the downslide, Google search ad-click share for remarketing lists for search ads hit a nearly two-year low in the second quarter and further diminished RLSAs on Apple devices compared to other browsers. The “headwind” came from the impact of Apple’s Intelligent Tracking Prevention (ITP) on the advertisers’ ability to use RLSAs.

Merkle reports that Google advertisers have been turning to alternative audience-targeting tools like Similar Audiences, which reached a new click share high of 8% at the end of the quarter.

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