|Online advertising continued its upward trajectory as the first quarter of 2012 grew 19 per cent year-on-year to $713 million, with the industry on track to reach $3 billion this calendar year.
Figures compiled by PriceWaterhouseCoopers for the Interactive Advertising Bureau (IAB) show display advertising recorded a growth of 18 per cent, accounting for 21.6 per cent of total online ad revenue for the period. Display achieved its highest increase this period since 2008.
Classifieds registered 13 per cent growth and made up 22.9 per cent of total revenue. Search and directories advertising still maintained the lion's share of online revenue and claimed 55.5 per cent with a growth of 21.4 per cent. Directories grew at a faster rate than search.
Online video advertising reached $11.6 million.
IAB Australia chief executive Paul Fisher said in a statement: "The continued growth of online reflects the strengthening confidence of marketers and agencies that online is their medium of choice. In this challenging economic environment they look to online to provide measurability, reach, frequency, brand and direct response messaging - and they aren't being disappointed.
"There is no doubt that online advertising is on track to surpass $3 billion and 20 per cent share of all advertising this calendar year, and it's quite possible that we'll reach that milestone this financial year thanks to increased consumer confidence sparked by further interest rate cuts which we believe will support continued growth in online advertising in key sectors."
The total Q1 19 per cent growth figure is an increase of previous period-on-period comparisons. For the first quarter of 2011, compared to the previous corresponding period, it was 17 per cent growth. The same was true for Q1 from 2009 to 2010, while it was 14 per cent for Q1 from 2008 to 2009.
Fisher told AdNews the increase in online ad revenue for the quarter can be attributed to more advertisers coming on board to digital. He said: "All of this is being driven by consumer behaviour. Online media consumption is growing with a proliferation of devices and cheaper broadband."