Desktop Ad Blocking Continues Unexpected Decline in Germany - eMarketer
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Desktop Ad Blocking Continues Unexpected Decline in Germany

Data may be a sign that ad blocking will not grow uncontrollably

November 25, 2016 | Advertising & Marketing

For the third straight quarter, a measure of ad blocking in Germany showed a modest decline. The trend is unusual given widespread ad avoidance around the world.

Share of Desktop Page Impressions in Germany on Which Display Ads Were Blocked, Q2 2015-Q3 2016 (% of total)

According to Bundesverband Digitale Wirtschaft (BVDW) and Online-Vermarkterkreis (OVK)’s November 2016 report, desktop display ad blocking rates edged down 0.3 percentage points in the third quarter. The measure had declined by 0.7 points the previous quarter, and by 0.4 points in the first quarter.

Data from Pagefair, a widely cited source of ad blocking information, has suggested that the German market has relatively high rates of ad blocking. In data released in September, for instance, Pagefair reported that 27% of internet users in Germany used ad blocking software, considerably more than the levels seen in the US, UK or France.

Desktop Ad Blocking User Penetration in North America and Select Countries in Western Europe, Q2 2016 (% of internet users)

The new data from BVDW and OKV signals that ad blocking, while a serious problem for publishers and advertisers, may not be skyrocketing to a crisis point, but may simply simmer at current levels, never becoming a majority activity.

However, publishers will remain on the alert for smartphone ad blocking. Figures from a July 2016 survey from Deloitte indicate that, as in other markets, smartphone ad blocking is still less common that desktop ad blocking in Germany. Only 15% of internet users in Germany use mobile ad blocking, Deloitte found.

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