Despite mobile accounting for 63% of total digital time spent in 2015, it only attracted 35% of all online ad dollars, according to the IAB 2015 Internet Ad Revenue Report. Ad dollars tend to eventually follow attention, but right now there’s a gap in monetization as the industry learns how well their mobile ads are performing and how effective they can be.
The good news is that there’s increasing proof that mobile ads are not only effective, but that they actually work better than desktop ads at driving key brand lift metrics. Comscore’s 2015 ad campaign norms indicate that mobile ads perform especially well in lower funnel metrics such as likelihood to recommend and purchase intent, where mobile brand lift was more than double that of desktop.
Why do mobile ads work so well? One hypothesis is that mobile ads cover a greater portion of the screen, causing them to appear more directly in the consumer’s field of vision (and in a very lean-forward environment). Conversely, desktop ads can be more easily overlooked if they’re small relative to the content on the page or if they’re positioned in less prominent real estate, such as below-the-fold or off to the side. Mobile’s success in the lower funnel might also be attributed to mobile users often being closer to the point of purchase than when they are on their desktop computer.
Whatever the factors may be, the fact that mobile ads work so well from a branding perspective is something that advertisers should take note of. A reluctance to shift more of their budgets to mobile may be leaving a significant opportunity unrealized.
For more insights on the performance and effectiveness of online advertising, check out our Value of a Digital Ad report series here.