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Mobile Expands Its Share of Worldwide Digital Ad Spend

By 2017, mobile will account for nearly four out of 10 global digital ad dollars

Mobile is making inroads in digital ad spending throughout the world, according to eMarketer’s latest forecast of paid media ad spending worldwide. While mobile internet ad spending as a share of the total digital market is largest in North America, it’s growing in every region around the world.

This year, eMarketer expects, 18.8% of all digital ad spending in North America will go toward mobile internet ads—which include all mobile advertising on tablets, smartphones and other devices except messaging-based formats. By 2017, nearly half of all digital ad spending in North America will be on the mobile internet.

Western Europe and Asia-Pacific are nearly tied this year, with 12.6% and 12.3% of all digital spending occurring on mobile, respectively. But Western Europe is expected to expand its share more rapidly, as a relatively mature desktop ad market gives over to mobile channels. Latin America, the Middle East and Africa, and Central and Eastern Europe all have less mature digital ad markets overall, but the direction is clear: A greater share of all digital dollars will go toward mobile each year. By 2017, eMarketer expects, 36.3% of digital ad spending around the world will go toward mobile formats, up from just 4.6% as recently as 2011.

That’s happening even as digital continues to grow significantly, meaning much digital growth is attributable to mobile specifically. North America will remain the No. 1 digital ad market throughout the forecast period, with Asia-Pacific in second place.

Overall, eMarketer predicts an increase of 2.8% in total media ad spending worldwide this year. Next year, the FIFA World Cup will help boost growth levels to 5.0%, the highest projected increase through 2017. By the end of the forecast period, eMarketer estimates advertisers around the world will spend $616.3 billion on all paid media.


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