In-App Mobile Programmatic Ad Spending Poised To Grow

May 10, 2016 — by Amarita Bansal    

Could in-app programmatic ad spending soon outpace programmatic spend for the mobile web? Read an excerpt below from a MediaPost article to find out more:

While programmatic buying for the mobile Web is more popular among buyers than buying in-app inventory programmatically, in-app buying is poised to grow.

In fact, eMarketer estimates that the U.S. in-app mobile ad spending market—which includes both search and display advertising—will reach $20.79 billion this year, accounting for 72.4% of total mobile ad spending. A large portion of that in-app ad spending transacts traditionally, not programmatically. But this dynamic is about to change.

Speaking during the Mobile Marketing Association (MMA) Mobile Automation & Programmatic Leadership Forum on Thursday, eMarketer Senior Analyst Catherine Boyle said that the digital researcher forecast that U.S. advertisers are projected to spend $15.45 billion programmatically to serve mobile ads. That number is expected to hit $21.22 billion in 2017, or 37% year-over-year growth, according to eMarketer estimates.

In-app advertising, Boyle said, will be a key driver of this growth. To contextualize that $15 billion figure: it’s 10x the $1.5 billion Powerball jackpot, which was the largest in U.S. history. And it’s more than the industry will spend on radio, newspaper and magazine advertising combined in 2016.

In addition, eMarketer projects U.S. advertisers will spend $22.39 billion on mobile display ad spending in 2016. “The mobile display advertising business is not a small business,” Boyle emphasized. And, $15.45 billion of that will be spent programmatically.

But, the elephant in the room? It’s Facebook and the role it plays in mobile programmatic. In fact, currently the bulk of mobile programmatic dollars will flow to Facebook—51% of the ad dollars in 2016, according to eMarketer. But in 2017, that trend will shift just a bit as the majority (53%) of mobile programmatic ad dollars will be spent outside of Facebook. 

Boyle pointed out a few key data points on mobile:

  •  Mobile users spend the majority of their time using apps; Web visits are frequent but fleeting.
  • 79.3% of consumers’ time is spent with apps, with roughly 20% using the mobile Web.
  • In mobile, the ad dollars are following consumer behavior, so 73.2% of ad spending (that’s display plus search) is going to apps.

Read the full MediaPost article here.


Amarita Bansal

Amarita Bansal is Senior Content Manager at MediaMath. In her role, Amarita provides thought leadership in the adtech space by fostering relationships across every team at MediaMath, producing content for the blog, demand generation initiatives, media placements and bylines. She also guides the content strategy for our account-based marketing efforts. Born and raised in West London, New York City is now her adopted home town. An alumna of Northwestern University’s Medill School of Journalism, Amarita has produced content across all digital platforms, previously working at Associated Press in the London bureau. She's a pilates enthusiast and loves to go giggin’.