Social advertising spending grew 27% during Q1, whilst paid search jumped 11% and eCommerce Channel Ads increased 83%, according to the latest Quarterly Trends Report from Kenshoo.
Overall, search spending was up 11% year-on-year with impressions up 35% and clicks up 25% compared to the previous year.
Mobile CPCs continue to be lower than desktop, dropping 12% following the Holiday season.
The research also highlights that spending on Instagram continues to increase reaching a 44% growth year-on-year. During Q4 2018, Stories Ads experienced a seasonal spike. However, overall investment in Stories declined from 11% to 8%.
Instagram Stories is still a very new format, which may explain slightly more volatile performance levels.
At the same time, Pinterest enjoyed a successful Q1 as spend increased 107% compared to the previous year, clicks doubled (100%) and impressions also grew by 81%.
The findings highlight that marketers are beginning to make use of Pinterest as a product discovery platform. Budgets for Pinterest ads already began to increase during the pre-holiday season as marketers prepared to reach consumers early on ahead of the holidays.
“Instagram, video and mobile ads are key segments of the social advertising spectrum and continue to outpace social overall in terms of spending growth. At the same time, as video ads and Instagram Stories offer a subtler, brand-focused ad experience, they may very well play a role in the overall decline in click-through rate,” said Chris Costello, senior director of marketing research for Kenshoo.
“Paid search continues to be a stable bedrock for advertisers; even as the seasonal spending boost receded, the growth of mobile search ads propelled spend to grow over Q1 of last year, and to exceed pre-holiday levels, highlighting the importance of the channel to marketers and consumers alike.”
Meanwhile, Apple Search Ads performed particularly well among Kenshoo clients, increasing almost 90% in Q1 2019.
The format launched on Kenshoo back in Q3 2018. Apple Search Ads are shown in response to user search queries from within the App Store and as such align more strongly with user intent.
Given that 65% of all app downloads follow an app search according to Apple, the format has unsurprisingly attracted the attention of many app developers and app marketers.