The marketing industry is constantly changing, and that’s particularly true of digital channels.
And while keeping up with new trends can be challenging, it’s more than worth the effort. Staying on top of what’s happening in the industry is the best way to keep up with your competitors and identify new strategies that will move you closer to your marketing goals.
With that in mind, we’ve compiled a list of 31 of the most important advertising statistics you should know to succeed in 2018.
Keep reading for the up-to-date information you need on PPC advertising, social media, mobile advertising, email marketing, video advertising, and what’s on the horizon for the marketing industry.
It should come as no surprise to experienced digital marketers that the majority of online advertising dollars go to Google and Facebook.
That said, both of their shares are expected to decrease slightly over the next few years as advertising options on other platforms like Amazon and Snapchat increase in popularity.
If you’re unsure of whether Google Ads (formerly known as Google AdWords) has the potential to generate revenue for your business, you’ll be glad to hear that businesses typically make double their investment on the platform.
And if you’re already running Google Ads campaigns, but not seeing these kinds of results, this could be a sign that your strategy is in need of some adjustments.
Measuring your success on any advertising platform can be challenging without concrete benchmarks, which is why it can be helpful to know the average CTR of other marketers’ campaigns.
It’s also worth noting that the average conversion rate for Google Ads clicks is 3.75% for search and 0.77% for display.
Another metric to keep an eye on with any PPC campaign is the cost per click or CPC.
Within the Google Ads platform, the average CPC is over $2 higher for ads in the search results than for those run on the display network.
Omnichannel advertising strategies like showing what’s in stock at nearby stores and increasing bids around business locations have become increasingly popular over the past few years.
And as this statistic demonstrates, they’re effective for generating incremental visits, or visits that businesses wouldn’t have received otherwise.
Effective digital marketing requires reaching your audience where they already spend time online.
And considering that today’s internet users spend a third of their time on social media, this is a channel most businesses can benefit from including in their strategies.
Considering that 40% of internet users follow brands on social media, these platforms are natural choices for boosting customer loyalty.
Beyond that, 1 in 4 internet users also follow brands from which they’re considering making a purchase — meaning that even if they aren’t customers yet, the content you share with your followers could be the determining factor in whether they convert.
Over one-third of online shoppers use social media to “find inspiration” for a purchase.
This is higher than any other form of online media, including retailer websites, price comparison websites, and multi-brand websites.
Facebook is still the platform of choice for the majority of B2C marketers.
Among B2B marketers, though, LinkedIn has a slight edge, with 93% claiming it as the most valuable platform for their business.
Although many advertisers overlook Reddit, its users spend more time per visit than users on Facebook (4.81 minutes), Instagram (3.05 minutes), Twitter (2.76 minutes), and Snapchat (1.79 minutes).
And while successfully marketing on the platform requires a strong understanding of its audience, it’s certainly possible — as illustrated by Findlay Hats, which made $28,000 in sales from one post.
Mobile advertising has become increasingly important over the past few years.
And considering that internet users now spend over two-thirds of their digital media time on smartphones and other devices, it’s unlikely that it’s going to slow down anytime soon.
It’s not news to say that the higher a result or ad is on a results page, the higher its average CTR — but a 45% drop between the first and second ads is significant.
This is much more dramatic than the drop on desktop computers and tablets, and important to keep in mind if you’re optimizing campaigns for mobile devices.
Making your target audience aware of your brand is an essential step in the sales process and one that mobile search ads can help with.
In fact, 51% of smartphone users have discovered a new company or product when searching on their smartphones.
Mobile devices are becoming increasingly integrated into consumers’ daily lives.
Shoppers now not only use them to find stores in which they can make a purchase but also to continue researching their options once they’ve arrived at a store.
Young online shoppers now overwhelmingly prefer to browse and make a purchase on mobile devices rather than desktop computers.
Consumers in the 18 to 29 age bracket lead this trend but are closely followed by 78% of consumers in the 30 to 44 group.
Although it’s now one of the oldest forms of digital marketing, email still boasts an impressive conversion rate.
This is higher than the averages for traffic from search, direct, and social media.
Gmail ads are still a relatively new option, and some marketers struggle to gauge their success due to the lack of a Quality Score metric.
But as the statistic above demonstrates, it’s clear that the higher your open rates, the less you’ll pay for each click — so if you’re looking to improve your campaigns on the platform, you’ll need to improve your audience targeting and optimize your subject lines for clicks.
Even as more new channels develop, revenue from email campaigns continues to make up a significant portion of digital marketing revenue.
That proportion increased from 2016 to 2017, illustrating that the channel isn’t at risk of losing value to the newer options available to marketers.
When asked to rate the effectiveness of personalization tactics, marketers indicated that dynamic content was the best for their businesses.
In the same survey, 60% of marketers said personalized email content based on real-time data is effective, and 58% said the same of personalized email content based on software and machine learning.
Segmentation is a popular tactic among email marketers, and for good reason.
A study by MailChimp found that segmented campaigns achieve higher open rates, more clicks, lower unsubscription rates, and fewer bounces.
Given the importance of catering to mobile users, it makes sense that the majority of email marketers are now making this their top priority for improving campaigns.
When marketers first incorporated video into their strategies, it was largely seen as a way to drive engagement.
And while it can certainly be effective for this goal, it also shows clear potential to drive sales and other high-impact conversions.
Video has quickly grown in popularity, with US companies spending over $13 billion on video ads in 2017 — and that number is predicted to increase to over $22 billion by 2021.
As marketers gain more experience with video, they’ve also become more successful in creating videos that retain viewers’ attention.
As of 2017, overall completion rates were up to 70% — a drastic improvement from the 47% average just two years prior.
As consumers become more familiar with video, more of them are clicking to learn more about the content they see.
The biggest jump in video CTR was among desktop users, while CTR on tablets slightly decreased.
As an internet user, you’re likely among the majority that dislikes pop-up ads.
In fact, 81% of consumers have closed a browser or exited a webpage because of one — meaning that if you use them as part of your advertising strategy, it’s essential to be cautious of damaging the browsing experience.
When asked what they want the brands they follow to post on social media, the majority of consumers said discounts or sales.
Unfortunately, only 18% of marketers post these on a regular basis, meaning there’s a disconnect between what consumers want and what brands are delivering.
On the flip side, 58% of marketers say they share posts that “tell a story” — but only 37% of consumers want this kind of content.
Frequency is a difficult element to get right with email marketing. The majority of consumers want to receive promotions at least once per month, but only 15% would like to receive them every day.
Although Google and Facebook are on track to remain the largest two advertising platforms, Amazon is expected to experience significant growth this year and become the third-largest.
Influencer marketing has steadily grown in popularity over the past few years, and that growth is expected to continue over the next three years.
In one survey, 57% of marketers said that influencer marketing will be integrated in all marketing activities, and 47% expect it to become a cross-functional discipline that will expand beyond marketing.
While many marketers focused their attention on the potential uses of virtual reality (VR) over the past few years, that attention has now shifted to augmented reality (AR).
Overall spending on AR nearly doubled in 2017, and that number is predicted to continue increasing.
And considering that AR company Blippar claims that brands have seen 30% higher engagement rates with their advertisements, it’s no wonder that many are shifting their focus toward augmented reality as the next big trend in digital marketing.
The digital advertising industry now changes so rapidly that it can be challenging to keep up, but the statistics above should give you a solid idea of what’s happening with the most important channels.
Still, there’s a constant flow of new data available — so let me know if there’s anything important I missed in the comments below!
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