November 17, 2010, 3:07 PM

Online ad revenue up 16% during Q3

Search advertising commands nearly half of revenue.

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U.S. online advertising revenue reached a record $6.4 billion during the third quarter, up 16.4% from $5.5 billion for the same period a year ago, according to data released today by the Interactive Advertising Bureau, a trade group that represents web sites that sell advertising.

 “Advertisers are shifting more of their brand messaging online, accounting for this welcome surge in a difficult economy,” says David Silverman, a partner at PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP, the consulting firm that prepared the report for the IAB. The consulting firm calculated its findings through survey data submitted by web publishers, ad networks, commercial online service providers, e-mail providers and other online media companies as well as with publicly available information.

An Internet Retailer calculation based on the previously released data and today’s Q3 numbers tallies online advertising revenue for the first three quarters of 2010 at $18.5 billion, up 12.8% from the same time frame in 2009, when online ad revenue totaled $16.4 billion.

Online search commands nearly half of all online advertising revenue. During the first half of 2010, the latest time frame for which detailed IAB report data is available, paid search accounted for 47% of total revenue, followed by display/banner advertisements (23%), classified ads (10%), rich media (6%), lead generation (5%), digital video (5%), sponsorship (2%) and e-mail (1%). 

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