Google’s 2013 Mobile Search Revs Were Roughly $8 Billion

How much money is Google making in mobile search? There have been various analyst estimates for some time. However now we can do the calculation with greater accuracy.

Last week the IAB released an updated report on global mobile advertising revenue. The trade association said that worldwide mobile ad revenues were $19.3 billion, representing 92 percent growth over 2013. If mobile ad revenue grows again by an equivalent amount it will reach nearly $38 billion by the end of 2014, globally.

In North America, 2013 mobile ad revenues were revised upward to $8.1 billion, representing more than 100 percent growth over 2012. This would put mobile ad revenue in the region on track to reach perhaps $16 or $17 billion in 2014. Most of this is the US market.

Global mobile revenue by format

Search is the largest single component of mobile ad revenue in North America and globally. In North America mobile search revenues were 53.2 percent of the total; globally they were about 49 percent according to the IAB figures. This compares with search pulling in 43 percent of PC-based digital ad revenue in the US market in 2013.

Google dominates mobile search with a 92 percent global share according to StatCounter. In North America Google’s share is 85 percent. Similarly, Google captures about 85 percent of all paid search ad revenue worldwide. Google’s share of mobile search revenue is likely closer to 90 percent (or more).

The value of the global mobile search market was roughly $9.4 billion at the end of 2013. If we assume that Google captures a “conservative” 85 percent of that spend, Google’s share of global mobile paid-search revenue would have been about $8 billion last year. In North America Google’s mobile paid search revenues would have been at least $3.7 billion.

If these numbers are accurate mobile would have contributed at least 21 percent of Google’s overall paid search revenue in 2013.

Google’s total mobile ad revenues are greater because the company also operates an extensive display network, which includes YouTube. Accordingly, Google’s overall mobile ad revenues probably exceeded $10 billion last year.

By comparison Facebook now makes 61 percent of its ad revenue from mobile.

(George Dolgikh / Shutterstock.com)

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