In-app now accounts for almost two-thirds of mobile video ad spend globally

Anne Freier

In Mobile Advertising. February 22, 2019

Mobile is on track to level with desktop when it comes to global video ad spend, reaching 47% in 2018, up from 17% in 2017, according to the latest Quarterly Mobile Index by PubMatic.

Mobile video ads grew rapidly in APAC at a 10x growth rate, whilst the Americas doubled their mobile ad spend and EMEA grew 37%.

In-app video experienced real momentum and is now up 200% year-on-year accounting for almost two-thirds of all mobile video ad spend worldwide. This is partially attributed to in-app video providing better targeting (56%) and customer engagement (54%).

Overall, mobile ad spend grew 32% in Q4 2018 with apps still taking the majority share of impressions (54%), although mobile web is growing (46% year-on-year).

As Android battled fraud issues, advertisers have moved to iOS, which now represents 31% of the global in-app ad spend, up from 20% in 2017.

At the same time, header bidding is beginning to be embraced by publishers with a 76% adoption rate in December 2018 among the top 1,000 US sites for programmatic ads.

Mobile header bidding grew significantly in 2018, particularly in APAC (276%), followed by EMEA (191%) and the Americas (68%). Mobile devices are now representing 26% of all impressions coming from header bidding technologies.

PubMatic also noted that private marketplaces (PMPS) are becoming a more attractive platform for buyers to access audiences in-app. However, quality and brand-safety concerns are still topping the lists among brands and agencies.

Although Ads.txt has now been adopted 77% of the top 5,000 programmatic domains making open exchanges more secure, quality concerns are leading to a rise in PMP usage, particularly for in-app.

Among the top verticals for in-app PMPS were entertainment & leisure, finance and business, technology and news.