Cillian Bracken Conway
23rd Oct, 2015

Due to its improved mobile monetisation, Google’s rebound growth was noted as among the highlights of Merle|RKG’s Digital Marketing Report for the third quarter of 2015. The report provides analysis of trends in social media, search engine optimisation, paid search, display advertising, product ads, and comparison shopping engines, among others.

Other key points include the cessation of Amazon Product Ads and the inconsequential impact of the ad blocking done on the iOS Safari browser. It also disclosed that Facebook spending is increasing twice as much as search, and Microsoft’s free Windows 10 update is not doing anything to boost search or browser share.

Google’s Growth Rate Experiences a Turnaround through Better Mobile Monetisation

Compared to its 12% year-over-year growth in the second quarter of this year, Google US’ spending on paid search increased to 18% in the third quarter. Meanwhile, after a decline of 1% in the previous quarter, its click growth experienced a vast improvement this quarter, with a 13% increase.

This strong turnaround in Google’s growth rate this quarter was made possible by better monetisation of mobile traffic. Recently, the leading technology company began displaying three text ads on top of organic results on mobile phones, instead of the two they allowed in the past. This resulted in a noticeable surge of mobile traffic for a great number of advertisers, as the added allowed ads for real estate, which previously did not get enough impressions, started showing. The third text ad’s addition increased mobile clicks from 56% in the second quarter to 106% this quarter.

Merle|RKG’s data further points out that Google is gaining admirable progress from their Product Listing Ads (PLAs) on mobile phones. For the third quarter of this year, clicks for mobile PLAs registered up to 166%.

Yahoo Gemini’s Aim to Provide Better Gains for Yahoo and Bing Advertisers Fizzles Out

If Google managed a turnaround to its growth rate this quarter, Yahoo Gemini, on the other hand, is not experiencing the same success. It was announced officially in February last year as the “first unified ad marketplace for both mobile search and native advertising”. More than a year later, Yahoo modified its partnership with Microsoft, allowing Yahoo to serve Gemini search ads for as much as half of the search engine’s desktop traffic. This is Yahoo’s courageous attempt to take hold of its own fate in search after its failure to be satisfied with Bing Ads’ performance.

The Gemini platform is still getting migrated search traffic from Yahoo, and is producing almost a quarter of the pooled Yahoo and Bing clicks for the third quarter, among those who adopted Gemini. However, it appears that Gemini traffic is primarily sourced from traffic generated from Bing Ads. The collective click growth rate across Yahoo Gemini and Bing Ads reached its year-over-year peak in the first quarter of this year at 38%. This came after Yahoo’s agreement to become Firefox’s default search provider. This quarter, their click growth rate plummeted to 7%.