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Mobile to Surpass Newspapers for UK Ad Spending

Mobile continues to drive digital ad growth in the UK

Mobile ad spending in the UK continues to show significant growth and is expected to rise 90.0% this year to nearly £2.26 billion ($3.53 billion), up from about £1.19 billion ($1.86 billion) in 2013, according to eMarketer’s latest UK ad spending estimates. By 2018, eMarketer expects mobile to claim more than one-third of total paid media spending in the UK.

As ad spending growth across other channels continues to slow, mobile spending will top that on newspapers for the first time in 2014 and will be comparable with spending on all UK print media combined. Mobile will account for 15.1% of total media spending this year, compared with just 13.8% for newspapers. In 2015, mobile will surpass print’s total, at 21.0% of all spending vs. 17.3%.

Mobile will continue to make gains on other formats across the forecast period and will soon rival spending on TV. By 2016, one year after mobile passes print spending, TV’s share of UK total media ad spending will fall to 23.1% as mobile increases its portion to 26.2%. The following year, mobile will become the single largest ad channel in the UK market.

Continued robust growth in the mobile channel is driving the bulk of digital ad growth in the UK. eMarketer estimates that mobile will account for nearly one-third of all digital ad spending this year, with this figure rising to more than half by 2016.

In 2013, spending on digital ad formats (including all paid media spending for ads served to any internet-connected device) rose 15.8% to top £6.27 billion ($9.80 billion). This year, digital ad spending growth will slow to 13.0%, and by 2015 digital will be up just 10.0%. But that’s still much faster growth than that for total media ad spending, which will increase by 5.5% this year to around £14.93 billion ($23.28 billion). Digital will account for half of all paid media ad spending in the UK next year, according to eMarketer’s forecast.

eMarketer bases all of our forecasts on a multipronged approach that focuses on both worldwide and local trends in the economy, technology and population, along with company-, product-, country- and demographic-specific trends, and trends in specific consumer behaviors. We analyze quantitative and qualitative data from a variety of research firms, government agencies, media outlets and company reports, weighting each piece of information based on methodology and soundness.

In addition, every element of each eMarketer forecast fits within the larger matrix of all our forecasts, with the same assumptions and general framework used to project figures in a wide variety of areas. Regular re-evaluation of each forecast means those assumptions and framework are constantly updated to reflect new market developments and other trends.

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