REPORT: Facebook Leads 2011 Online Display Ad Sales

Facebook will have a 17.7 percent share of the market for online display ad sales this year.

Facebook will have a 17.7 percent share of the market for online display ad sales this year.

That’s eMarketer’s latest forecast for 2011; in March the consultancy first said that Facebook was on track to outsell Yahoo and Google in the online display ad market.

By contrast, Facebook had 12.2 percent of the online display ad sales market in 2010. And eMarketer expects the social network to take 19.4 percent of the online display ad market in 2012.

David Hallerman, eMarketer principal analyst, said in a press release:

Facebook’s distinctive form of display advertising is increasingly attracting advertisers. These are mainly smaller companies, and some of them have a strong direct-response focus. Google is going after many of the same advertisers to some extent, and this is where one facet of the competition between them will heat up. However, with the vastly different advertising experience each company offers, many marketers will run display ads on both platforms.

Google’s display revenue gains will come from three main sources: large advertisers that are already Google customers, the range of small or medium-sized businesses that have relied on search for years but are looking to expand their reach, and large-brand marketers looking to YouTube to widen their video advertising reach,

With a projected 13.6 percent growth rate in 2011, Yahoo!’s display business is growing nicely – or so it would seem at first glance. But with the total display market set to increase by 24.5 percent in 2011, supported by even higher gains at Google and Facebook, the growth at Yahoo looks more like a poor showing than a good one.

That’s a powerful indicator of how vibrant today’s display market is, when a company like Yahoo can increase revenues by a normally healthy rate yet still lose market share.

Readers, what do you think about the latest numbers from eMarketer?