Online Viewers Exposed to 65% More Ads Than They Were A Year Ago

By Megan O'Neill 

If you’ve been feeling inundated with ads when watching online videos there’s a good reason for it.  According to comScore stats, we’re being exposed to a whopping 67.5 percent more online video ads than we were a year ago.

The January 2013 comScore U.S. Online Video Rankings indicate that the average online video viewer was exposed to 58.4 ads this year, up from 38.4 ads in January 2012, and this leap has taken place on virtually every online video site.

As you can see from the comparison of online video ad properties ranked by video ads viewed, Hulu viewers saw a jump from 43.1 ads per viewer in 2012 to 56.9 in 2013, the BrightRoll Video Network saw a jump from 6.1 ads per viewer to 12.1 and on the whole, in January 2012 5.5 billion video ads were streamed and this number jumped to over 9 billion in January 2013.  Now that’s a lot of video ads!

On the YouTube front, back in January 2012 Google Sites didn’t even make the list of the top U.S. Online video ad properties ranked by video ads.  In January of this year, they clocked in at the number one spot with over 1.8 billion video ads streamed, an average of 19.4 ads per viewer.  This is still relatively small, when compared with the 18.6 billion videos that Google Sites streamed, but it’s definitely clear that we’re being subjected to a much larger number of views than we were a year ago.

Note that these stats “include streaming-video advertising only and do not include other types of video monetization, such as overlays, branded players, matching banner ads, etc.”

On another note, the recent comScore stats also revealed a decline in total unique viewers.  In January 2012 there were 181 million people watching online video in the United States.  Fast forward to January 2013, where comScore reports that only 179.5 million were watching.

Google Sites (aka YouTube) fell from 151 million uniques in 2012 to 149 million in 2013.  Facebook, on the other hand, was one of the few sites to show growth in 2013, with 56.9 million unique viewers, up from 45 million in 2012.  Facebook, of course, does not subject viewers to a barrage of in-stream advertising (at least, not yet).  Could this have anything to do with their rise in uniques over bigger streaming sites?  What do you think?  Feel free to share your thoughts with us in the comments below.

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Megan O’Neill is the resident web video expert here at Social Times.  Megan covers everything from the latest viral videos to online video news and tips, and has a passion for bizarre, original and revolutionary content and ideas.