IAB figures show 11.3% recovery for digital advertising in Q3

Digital advertising in Australia is showing clear signs of a post-COVID recovery, with the latest figures from IAB Australia seeing 11.3% growth in Q3 when compared with the previous quarter.

Investment in Australian digital advertising totalled $2.263b in the quarter ending September 30, 2020 – as reported in the IAB Australia Online Advertising Expenditure Report (OAER), compiled by PwC.

IAB OAER Report Figures

The IAB OAER Report also found that all advertising categories achieved growth in Q3, after the pandemic driven declines of Q2.

Search and directories were shown to make up 45% of all expenditure in Q3, with total investment rising to $1.006b. That was followed by general display advertising, up 38% to $871m.

General display formats video (+11%), standard display (+10%), and infeed/native advertising (+19%) all experienced double-digit quarter on quarter recovery.

Year-on-year, general display revenue was up 0.9%, thanks to strong growth in video revenue. That was despite search (-6.9%), and directories and classifieds (-11.5%) categories being down on last year.

Other key findings included:

  • 40% of advertisers opted to buy via an agency, 16% direct, 11% via programmatic guaranteed and 33% via programmatic RTB/PMP.
  • Investment continues to trend towards Connected TV, shifting share from both desktop and mobile devices.
  • Mobile now represents 67% of general display advertising and 63% of search and directories.
  • Retailers remained the number one investment industry.
  • FMCG advertising has broken into the top five industries for general display expenditure for the first time since June 2017.

IAB Categories Expenditure Type [Click To Enlarge]

CEO of IAB Australia Gai Le Roy said the body expects to see continued recovery throughout Q4, typically the industry’s strongest quarter.

“It’s been a challenging year but the growth this quarter in terms of digital formats signals the industry is bouncing back,” she said.

“We are now entering what is traditionally considered the industry’s’ strongest quarter and we anticipate a continuation of the growth through to the end of the year.”


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