An article published in The Hindu on Thursday reveals that Google’s search engine is the biggest culprit behind the traffic and ad revenue problems that have plagued India’s search advertising ecosystem.
“As of June 2018, Google’s advertising revenue and market share for the Indian search market was Rs 3,000 crore, according to data compiled by the company.
But by the end of 2017, Google had taken up more than 70 per cent of the Indian market,” the article reads.
The article cites Google’s own research and says that its ad revenue was growing at a whopping 16 per cent annually, which is not good for the advertisers, who are looking for ways to make a living.
“By 2021, India’s ad revenue is projected to fall to Rs 1,100 crore.
That would mean that a quarter of Indian users will not see any advertisements,” the paper says.
The biggest ad blockers are Google AdSense, which was valued at Rs 1.5 lakh crore as of March 2017, and AdMob, which has seen a 25 per cent decline in revenue since June 2017.
Google’s AdSense revenue rose by nearly 15 per cent in the last year alone.
AdMob has been around for almost seven years, but it is one of the biggest ad blocking platforms in the world.
It has over 10 million users and ad-blocking is a huge business for the company, which owns about 90 per cent share of the AdMob platform.
Google is looking to get rid of AdMob completely by 2022.
However, AdMob will be allowed to remain in place for the next five years.
“AdMob users can still pay for their ad-free browsing, but the number of ads will increase,” the report said.
According to the report, “the growth of AdSense and Admob users has not been enough to offset the decline in search advertising revenues.
AdSense users will only be able to pay for a fraction of the search ads they see in the future.
While AdMob users will be able buy ads through a ‘premium’ platform called Google AdWords, Google will continue to use its existing AdSense platform to pay users for the ads.”
Google also claims that “Google’s search ads will become much less lucrative over the next few years.”
In the end, the report warns that advertisers will have to look at other alternatives.
“Google is likely to introduce new search advertising offerings in the coming years.
Advertisers will be forced to choose between Google Adsense or AdMob.
AdWords will be the default option in India in 2019, but AdMob is likely soon to become the default platform in 2019.
As we saw in 2016, many Indian users would not have the time or inclination to buy an ad-filled browser.”
Google has not released any official statements on this issue, but one thing is certain: India has an expensive search infrastructure.