eMarketer Attributes Google’s Decreasing Ad Revenue To TikTok’s Success

On a recent episode of the Behind The Numbers podcast, Rachel Hasson and Paul Verna sit down and discuss Google’s diminishing ad returns and whether or not some of this can be linked back to TikTok’s success.

Behind The Numbers is a podcast co-sponsored by Insider Intelligence and eMarketer, both being major platforms of tech-related information and insight. Behind The Numbers may only deal with tech, but offers detailed analyses into the subject matter, discussing both news updates as well as their wider impact and implications on the marketplace and consumers as a whole. Let’s take the recent episode as an example of this behavior. While I can only offer a footnotes version of what was discussed in the twenty-one-minute episode, which can easily be accessed via the eMarketer website or the Podbean app, the gist of it revolves around taking a look at data from Google’s own published net ad revenue across the years, and discussing whether or not this is linked to TikTok taking much of the company’s audience away.

Of course, at first glance, this seems like a perhaps unwarranted comparison: Google is a search engine, why would its ad revenue be in any way affected by TikTok? Of course, it’s important to remember that Google primarily draws ad revenue from two sources: one would be the ad slots purchased by businesses large and small alike for the Search engine, and the other, rather important, source being YouTube. Sure, the latter’s still a massive platform and houses a bunch of relevant streaming media, but times are a changing. With short form content gaining further traction by the literal day, TikTok and Instagram Reels seem to have won the day. YouTube has its own version of short form content, titled Shorts, and they’re doing pretty well for themselves. However, Shorts are also competing against a massively popular platform for the current youth and internet generation: it’s a difficult slope to climb when the competition has years’ worth of a head start on you.

While ad revenue saw a rather massive upswing in 2021, after dwindling numbers in 2019 and 2020, the 40.4% year over year increase plummeted to a notably low 13.4% from ’21 to ’22. Now, projected figures estimate that the percentage increase will decrease to 8.2%, and then 6.4% in successive years. Overall, Google could really use some effective marketing and an adrenaline shot to keep itself going strong.

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