Search on Track to Finish Record Year

By the time 2012 ends, marketers will have spent $23 billion on search engine marketing. Whether marketers are managing search themselves or paying agencies, they have big hopes for the power of this channel. Analysts believe the rate of increase may be slowing in search but the format is still growing faster than “any other significant marketing channel.”

The SEMPO State of Search Marketing Report 2012 was released earlier this month and is based on the responses of over 900 companies and agencies. Based on these responses, analysts point to search as a steady but powerful marketing channel. The main goal for marketers as they increase search budgets is to generate leads. But a close second goal and one that has increased this year is creating a rise in brand reputation and recognition.

The top concerns for marketers with respect to search are:

  • Rise of mobile Internet use 47%
  • Google algorithm updates 39%
  • Rise of local search 29%
  • Behavioral targeting 27%
  • Personalization 25%

Over 79% of surveyed marketers give paid search high marks because they can measure ROI. This compares to only 15% who are able to do so with social media marketing. The ability to calculate ROI may explain why marketers expect to direct ‘robust growth’ to pay-​per-​click spending in the next year. The number of large marketers, those spending over $10 million a year on search, now stands at 12% of this surveyed group, up from 5% last year. Marketers in general will spend more on search, driving 2013 spending to a projected 17% higher figure, $26.9 billion.

[Sources: Miller, Miranda. Rise of Mobile and Local. Searchenginewatch​.com. 13 Sept. 2012. Web. 21 Sept. 2012; New SEMPO Study. Sempo​.org. 11 Sept. 2012. Web. 24 Sept. 2012] 
Kathy Crosett
Kathy is the Vice President of Research for SalesFuel. She holds a Masters in Business Administration from the University of Vermont and oversees a staff of researchers, writers and content providers for SalesFuel. Previously, she was co-​owner of several small businesses in the health care services sector.