Ad blocking software costs $22 billion in lost revenue

Dive Brief:

  • The 2015 Ad Blocking Report by PageFair and Adobe found ad blocking software has cost almost $22 billion in lost ad revenue so far this year.
  • The research also uncovered a spike in user growth, from 21 million users in 2009 to close to 200 million users putting ad blocking technology to use today.
  • Ad blocking software is directly at the intersection of Internet users' privacy rights, and marketers and publishers serving messages to those users -- with both sides fighting for their position to stick.

Dive Insight:

Genesis Media conducted recent research that found 24% of respondents used ad blocking software on home and office desktop computers, and a new report from Adobe and PageFair puts a cost behind that usage -- almost $22 billion in lost ad revenue so far this year with losses expected to double next year. 

In a blog post, PageFair said, “Since our last report, the existential threat of ad blocking has become a pressing issue in the boardrooms of publishers across the world. A concerted response is required, founded upon a renewed focus on user experience, and enabled by secure ad serving technology like PageFair’s. We hope this report will continue to help publishers, advertisers, consumer groups and technology vendors come together to define principles that support a sustainably free and open web.”

As troublesome as ad blocking software might seem for marketers trying to get messages out to an audience and publishers seeking to gain income from their websites, the technology is at its core a privacy issue for Internet users and an area which is still self-regulated and voluntary, particularly in the U.S. marketplace. If there is too much effort to work around ad blocking technology, marketers and publishers risk more stringent regulation to protect online privacy.

Filed Under: Marketing Tech Trends
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