7 August, 2007: Australia’s online advertising market has continued its strong growth, with the figures released today by the Audit Bureau of Verification Services (ABVS) confirming that total online expenditure for the second quarter of 2006 topped $226 million. The market has grown 59.4 percent over the past twelve months and shows no sign of slowing down.

General online advertising has been the standout sector in Q2, surging to 32.2 percent market growth worth $76 million. Classifieds online advertising has grown 8.1 percent to $67 million and search and directory by 9.9 percent to $83 million during the quarter. The general online advertising sector also diversified in terms of categories, with the auto sector increasing its share of general advertising as well as in its traditional sector of Classifieds.

Perhaps surprisingly, this quarter, recruitment is the new star category for general online advertising, being identified as the fastest growing category in this sector with 33% growth, as well as being the largest spender in the classifieds market sector.

IAB General Manager, Patty Keegan, said: “The ABVS results show that online is shaking up the traditional marketing and advertising landscape as more and more advertisers embrace it with confidence. It may be a virtual marketplace but online is delivering real results. It’s proven its worth and marketers are recognising its value.

“The sustained online market growth outlined in this quarters’ results clearly show online display advertising is increasingly being recognized as an important part of the marketing mix for brand building. While finance, automotive and computers and IT continue to hold the largest market shares for general online advertising, it’s refreshing to see recruitment has burst into the category with significant growth this quarter,” said Keegan.

“There’s still plenty of potential for growth across all the market sectors in online advertising though. For example, today automotive online advertising currently makes up just three percent of the total automotive advertising spend, with the balance of 97 percent spread across different mediums,” continued Keegan. “We would expect this three percent share to continue to grow over the coming year.”

The financial services sector continues to hold the lion’s share of the General Online Advertising expenditure, with Government beginning to explore opportunities online. While the automotive category grew significantly online this quarters

The ABVS results are an interesting juxtaposition to the recently released research by Frost & Sullivan which suggested that travel is the fastest growing sector in online spend, with FMCG not far behind.

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