What's the Right Amount of Online Advertising? - eMarketer
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What's the Right Amount of Online Advertising?

It can depend on the type of ad.

October 7, 2008

When Internet users are viewing ad-supported content, how many over-content ads are they willing to watch?

The answer is somewhere between one and five ads that interrupt content per hour, according to 61% of US adult Internet users surveyed in September 2008 by Dynamic Logic. The median response was two per hour.

Acceptable Number of Online Ads* Appearing over Free Web Content per Hour According to US Adult Internet Users, 2003, 2005 & 2007 (% of respondents)

Two-thirds of respondents thought over-content ads on the sites they visited had increased during the previous six months. That was up from the percentage who said so in 2005 (57%).

The Center for Media Research said Internet users thought they were seeing more interruptive ads because they visited a wider array of sites, which exposed them to a greater variety of ads and ad types.

Just over one-fifth (21%) of respondents to the Dynamic Logic survey said that over-content, or “intrusive” ads, were never appropriate, even to support free Web content.

The definition of “intrusive” can vary depending on the ad and the user. Irrelevant ads were considered intrusive and annoying by 72.4% of adult Internet users surveyed in February 2008 by TNS Global for TRUSTe.

US Adult Internet Users' Attitudes toward Online Advertising, February 2008 (% of respondents)

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