comScore released its December 2009 ranking of the top online ad networks, and the results might surprise you. While Google dominates online search, the story is a bit different for online ad networks.
AOL Advertising ranks at the top of the list of online ad networks in December 2009 followed by Yahoo! Network and then Google Ad Network, mirroring the top three rankings in December 2008. Note that the ranking measures the overall reach of each ad network. Detailed results from the comScore press release are included in the chart below:
Perhaps the more interesting statistic to review is the percent change in unique visitors that each of these ad networks reached from December 2008 to December 2009. When you look at that data, you’ll notice that Microsoft Media Network US had a very good year in 2009 growing by 31%. One can assume that the successful launch of Bing helped Microsoft in a lot of ways in 2009, including in growing the reach of its online ad network.
Another interesting piece of growth data is Google’s increase of 13% from December 2008 to December 2009 in comparison to the 8% growth by AOL Advertising and the 9% growth of Yahoo! Network. Clearly, Google is continuing to grow its online ad network at a faster rate than its closest competitors. Considering that the total Internet audience grew by 8% from December 2008 to December 2009 (according to the comScore report), Google, Microsoft, and several other ad networks are outpacing the organic growth of the overall Web audience. That’s a good sign for the future for those ad networks.
The story to learn here is this: Google might seem to be the dominant brand and player online, but that’s not always the case when you look a little bit closer. Furthermore, there is not one online ad network that is the go-to place for your online advertising dollars. In reality, there are a number of choices that offer broad reach to help you spread the word about your brand. Do your research and don’t be afraid to decide that the most well-known option might not be the best solution for your brand. And never put all your eggs in one basket.
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