UK to Top Countries with Highest Digital Ad Spend

According to new research by Group M, the UK is to become the first country where over half of all ad spend will go to digital and online media.

The global media buying division of WPP predicts that the total UK ad market will reach £15.7bn in 2015, including a 12.7% year-on-year increase in online that will see that sector surpass the £8bn mark.

Futures Director at Group M believes these figures are due to the popularity amongst Britons of smartphone use: "The British are the most enthusiastic online shoppers in the world in terms of spend per head. And there has always been a high level of credit and debit card use [online]. On top of that, Britons have rapidly embraced smartphone and tablet use, all of which has fuelled where advertisers spend their money."

In addition to retail spending, Smith forecasts a growth in digital revenues for newspaper brands: "We estimate that 10% of news brand revenue is digital in 2014. Advertiser demand for online display is rising strongly. Video, social and mobile are the main drivers. News brands must therefore align with these as best they can."

Smith concludes that display has been the main source of UK digital ad growth since 2013, and it is expected to grow even further in 2015. Group M predicts that the display advertising the sector will grow to £4.2bn, with approximately 29% of that derived from mobile devices.

After the UK with half of all ad spend going to digital, the countries set to follow are Sweden (47%), Denmark (43%), Australia (42%) and Norway (40%).

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