In comparison to the first quarter of 2015, more marketers appear to be investing in paid search advertising. The “Digital Marketing Report” published by Merkle discovered that Google paid search ad spend increased 25 percent year-over-year (YoY) in the first quarter of 2016.
Total ad spend on non-brand keywords increased 24 percent, the highest growth rate the results have yielded in the past six quarters. Additionally, clicks increased 33 percent year-over-year. When look at the data by device used, smartphones and tablets accounted for 53 percent of total paid search clicks.
“Google search ads continued to deliver strong performance in Q1 2016, as the renewed wave of mobile growth that kicked off in late 2015 remains the key driver of year-over-year (Y/Y) Google trends,” wrote the authors of the report. “In Q3 2015, Google began showing more ads at the top of phone results, helping its rate of mobile click growth more than double.”
Likely as a result of the increased monetization of mobile and the influx of traffic toward paid listings, organic search decreased in Q1. In the first quarter, there was a 7 percent drop in organic search visits, in comparison to the same quarter in 2015.
Measuring the ROI of Paid Search Marketing
In the “2015 State of Search Marketing Report” published by SEMPO, statistics showed that marketers were already becoming comfortable with utilizing paid search. About two-thirds of respondents said they were “good” at measuring its ROI. Search was also at the top of their list of digital marketing tactics.
According to the data, the channels that marketers struggled with the most were SEO (45 percent), email (44 percent), and display (29 percent).