MediaPost has published a new list of Google’s top ten search advertisers based on fourth-quarter data from 2010. According to the list, Amazon ranks as Google’s top spender, followed by AT&T, Capital One, Target, Expedia, Ebay, Progressive, Sprint, Geico, and State Farm.
Business Insider has dissected the list on their site. Despite the fact that Amazon is such a well-known brand and would probably show up in most searches even without paying for keywords, they believe that Amazon probably spends so much on Google “to pre-empt and bid up smaller competitors who could drive traffic and revenue from the biggest e-commerce keywords." It’s also not unexpected that financial and e-commerce companies would spend so much on search ads, says the post, because competition in their sector is especially fierce and the value of a lifetime customer is very high compared to the relatively low cost of an ad. Travel companies, with their generally expensive fares, rank high on the list for similar reasons.
So what does this list say about Google? Out of the $23 billion in revenue that they bring in from ads each year, their largest advertiser, Amazon, makes up less that 1% of that number, and according to Business Insider, Google’s isn't beholden to any single advertiser, a big advantage.