Internet overtakes TV as UK's leading ad sector

For the first time advertisers in the UK are spending more money on the internet than on TV ads, a report by the Internet Advertisement Bureau has shown.

Spending on internet advertising reached £1.7bn in the UK during the first six months of 2009 – growing 4.6% year-on-year growth, according to a report released today by the IAB.

It is a landmark moment for the beleaguered TV industry as advertising in this sector dropped 17% year-on-year, to £1.6bn.

The UK has become the first major economy to see internet advertising overtake TV ad spend, which has traditionally been the main medium for advertisers.

The internet now claims a 23.5% share of the UK advertising market, the TV market now claims a 21.9% share.

The IAB report said faster broadband speeds, more sophisticated online techniques and a greater amount of time spent online contributed to the rapid growth in ad spend on the web.

More than £1bn of the total £1.75bn spent online was for search engines ads, a rise of up 6.8% on the same period last year.

Online classified advertising now accounts for 22% of total internet ad spend, the IAB said, as the sector grew 10.6% to a total spend of £385m.

Online display advertising fell 5.2% from its 2008 position to £316.5m, while online video advertising grew to almost 300% year-on-year to around £12m.

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