Digital Ad Revenues Surge 19%, Climbing to $27.5 Billion in First Half of 2015, According to IAB Internet Advertising Revenue Report

Mobile Grows 54% Year-Over-Year, Representing 30% of Market Share
Digital Video Revenues Increase 35% Over Same Period 2014

NEW YORK – Internet ad revenues in the United States reached a landmark high of $27.5 billion in the first half of 2015, according to the IAB Internet Advertising Revenue Report released by the Interactive Advertising Bureau (IAB) and prepared by PwC US. This marks a 19 percent rise over the $23.1 billion in ad revenues for the first-half of 2014.

“As a result, we’ve seen social continue to fuel the growth of digital, particularly with respect to mobile and video.”

Accelerating the pace of already impressive growth in the half-year, 2015’s second quarter internet ad revenues rose by 22.5 percent to $14.3 billion, up from $11.7 billion in Q2 2014. This also reflects 8.5 percent growth from the first quarter of 2015.

Other highlights from the report include:

  • Mobile revenues climbed to $8.2 billion in HY 2015, up 54% from $5.3 billion reported at HY 2014
  • Mobile now represents 30% of the revenues generated by the entire internet advertising marketplace, up from 23% at HY 2014
  • Digital video, a component of display-related advertising, reached $2 billion in the first half of 2015, a 35% year-over-year jump from $1.5 billion in the first half of 2014
  • Search revenues in the first half of 2015 reached double digits, surpassing $10 billion, marking an 11% increase over the $9 billion in revenues achieved during the same period in 2014
  • Social media revenues – which encompass advertising delivered on social platforms including social networking, and social gaming websites and apps – reached $4.4 billion in HY 2015, a 51% hike over the same period in 2014, at $2.9 billion
  • The same top three advertising verticals continue to account for nearly half of advertising revenue (48%), including retail (22%), financial services (13%), and automotive (13%)
  • Display-related advertising revenues in the first half of 2015 totaled $6.8 billion, a 5% uptick from $6.5 billion in the first half of 2014, and accounted for 25% of digital advertising revenue overall

“Advertisers are more committed than ever to connect with audiences on digital screens,” said Randall Rothenberg, President and CEO, IAB. “Content is key to winning consumer attention – on mobile, in digital video, on desktop, and more – throughout the day.”

“We’re witnessing a seismic shift in consumer behavior to the always-on, connected consumer,” said David Silverman, a partner at PwC US. “As a result, we’ve seen social continue to fuel the growth of digital, particularly with respect to mobile and video.”

“Internet ad revenue growth is being driven further than ever before, as advertisers continue to invest in new ways to reach consumers,” said Sherrill Mane, Senior Vice President, Research, Analytics and Measurement, IAB. “Audiences have rapidly altered their media and purchasing habits and made digital media and mobile devices an integral part of their lives.”

Annual Figures

The following chart highlights half-year internet ad revenue since the IAB began measurements in 1996; dollar figures are rounded.


Half Year Revenue

% Growth
HY 15 $27,481 19%
HY 14 $23,091 15%
HY 13 $20,066 18%
HY 12 $17,028 14%
HY 11 $14,941 23%
HY 10 $12,127 11%
HY 09 $10,900 -5%
HY 08 $11,510 15%
HY 07 $9,993 26%
HY 06 $7,909 37%
HY 05 $5,787 26%
HY 04 $4,599 40%
HY 03 $3,292 11%
HY 02 $2,978 -20%
HY 01 $3,720 -7%
HY 00 $4,013 147%
HY 99 $1,627 110%
HY 98 $774 125%
HY 97 $344 320%
HY 96 $82
Total $182,262
Comparison of 2015 and 2014 Data (In Millions)
Half Year
Half Year
% $ % $
Revenue (Ad Formats)
Search 39% $9,081 37% $10,051
Classifieds and Directories 6% $1,307 5% $1,490
Lead Generation 4% $911 3% $931
Mobile 23% $5,333 30% $8,230
-Digital Video Commercials 6% $1,481 7% $1,992
-Ad banners / display ads 17% $3,917 14% $3,751
-Sponsorships 2% $366 1% $350
-Rich media 3% $694 2% $686
Total display-related 28% $6,459 25% $6,779
Revenue (Pricing Models)
Impression-based 34% $7,848 32% $8,901
Performance-based 65% $14,988 66% $18,098
Hybrid 1% $255 2% $482

IAB sponsors the IAB Internet Advertising Revenue Report, which is conducted independently by the New Media Group of PwC. The results are considered the most accurate measurement of interactive advertising revenues because the data is compiled directly from information supplied by companies selling advertisements on the internet.

The survey includes data concerning online advertising revenues from web sites, commercial online services, free email providers, and all other companies selling online advertising. The full report is issued twice yearly for full and half-year data, and top-line quarterly estimates are issued for the first and third quarters. PwC does not audit the information and provides no opinion or other form of assurance with respect to the information.

A copy of the full report is available at

About the IAB

The Interactive Advertising Bureau (IAB) empowers the media and marketing industries to thrive in the digital economy. It is comprised of more than 650 leading media and technology companies that are responsible for selling, delivering, and optimizing digital advertising or marketing campaigns. Together, they account for 86 percent of online advertising in the United States. Working with its member companies, the IAB develops technical standards and best practices and fields critical research on interactive advertising, while also educating brands, agencies, and the wider business community on the importance of digital marketing. The organization is committed to professional development and elevating the knowledge, skills, expertise, and diversity of the workforce across the industry. Through the work of its public policy office in Washington, D.C., the IAB advocates for its members and promotes the value of the interactive advertising industry to legislators and policymakers. Founded in 1996, the IAB is headquartered in New York City and has a West Coast office in San Francisco.

About PwC US

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via BusinessWire