Tablet-Driven Mobile Ad Spend on Web Search to Hit $12B by 2017

By Tony Rizzo September 18, 2012

High usage tablets (a term that also implies that tablets will replace laptops) will reach 672 million deployed units by 2017, driving significant increases in ad spend based solely on mobile search, which will likely reach 12 billion by 2017.

The increase will represent a tripling of such revenue, expected to hit $4 billion in 2012.

A new report from Juniper Research, “Mobile Search & Discovery: Web, Local, AR & Discovery Markets 2012-2017,” puts these numbers in perspective. The Juniper report also states that three times more searchers will be conducted through high usage tablets than will be through smartphones, and a whopping tenfold more searches than will be conducted through any other types of handsets.

It will all simply come down to a matter of screen size. Tablet displays, whether of the 7-inch or 10-inch variety, make performing search queries a much more comfortable experience, while the fact that these devices are used more in the home or at work for longer periods also means that users will very likely perform more searches and make more queries per session.

For these reasons, the report found that tablet users on average will put their tablets to use far more frequently, as noted above. 

This is all good news of course for the search engine providers, who obviously stand to benefit quite a bit from the booming mobile web search usage trend.

The report also points out that he retail brands – which will put mobile search capabilities to the most use - need to ensure their websites are optimized for mobile clicks. A poor user experience on a website that prevents consumers from making a purchase will kill the deal, and specifically means that ad spend will be wasted. 

Amazon and Marks & Spencer are among the few brands, according to Juniper, that have got this right, with many more key brands requiring further optimization to maximize the increasing opportunity from tablets. 

Other findings from the report include that the mobile search and discovery market will generate $15 billion by 2017. The research also found that augmented reality will not evolve as a standalone market, but that it will instead be increasingly deployed as an add-on feature for search and other location-based services.

We’re not sure we believe that this web search and ad spend scenario will come down to tablet growth. We believe that smartphones will more than hold their own against any tablet incursion relative to total overall use. Even smartphones sporting the tiny little screen of the iPhone 4S work well when it comes to search, mobile ads, and a subsequent follow through to actual purchases.

One thing we do agree with, however, is that the revenue here will continue to increase by leaps and bounds. But we believe that by 2017 the total revenue will likely exceed the $12 billion number that Juniper suggests – possibly by a great deal.

Edited by Braden Becker

TechZone360 Senior Editor

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