Mobile Ad Spend In India: 71% Of Total Digital Ad Spend By 2023 [REPORT]

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The exploded adoption of smartphones and increasing digital content consumption has convinced brands to increase their share of mobile ad spend in India. It is estimated that mobile will account for 71% of total digital ad spend in India in 2023, putting the country at the top in terms of the mobile advertising spend share. To put things in perspective, mobile will contribute just 58% of the total digital ad spend in the US – the country which contributes most to the global mobile advertising market in terms of revenue.

According to the latest report, titled Global Mobile Advertising Forecast, by Strategy Analytics, the contribution of mobile in India’s total digital ad spend will continue to rise in the next five year. While China still holds the lion’s share in terms of total mobile ad revenue in the APAC region, the digital ad market in India would primarily be driven by mobile.

On the flip side, the contribution of India to the global mobile ad market is expected to remain negligible. Despite being the fastest growing smartphone market in the world and the second largest country by the internet users, India fails to rank among the list of top 10 contributing countries by the mobile advertising revenue in 2023.


The contribution of India to the global mobile advertising revenue is estimated to remain less than 2% in 2023.

In emerging mobile-first markets, like India, mobile is playing a vital role in the growing digital content consumption, which ultimately leads users to digital ads. Mobile, being the primary source of content consumption, is yet to win the advertisers confidence in India.

“In emerging mobile-first markets, mobile phones may be the primary screen for content consumption but ad budgets are lower. Therefore, the contribution to global mobile ad spend from those markets will be marginal,” says Brice Longnos, Analyst Wireless Media.

So, what’s actually holding back advertisers from spending more on mobile ads in India?

The search will be attracting the maximum advertising dollars though, the rise of Social Media platforms have attracted the eyeballs of the advertisers. The increasing ad revenue of Facebook, Twitter, Snapchat, primarily driven by mobile ads, is a testimony to the growing influence of social channels on people in India.

However, some of the recent incidents have shapen the confidence of the advertisers, experts believe. Facebook Cambridge Analytica scandal, repeated incorrect charges to advertisers, unethical tracking of users’ data which has led to increased adoption of ad blockers, are the primary reasons that have made advertisers shy away from spending more on mobile ads.


The digital advertising landscape in India is also changing, thanks for mobile and video. Advertisers are looking forward to spending more ad dollars on mobile-video ads. In 2017, the consumption of mobile video ads in India more than doubled, making India rank 6th in the world in terms of mobile video ad consumption. Hence, brand advertisers had increased their budget for mobile video ads in India by 119% last year.

The trend is expected to continue in India, albeit at a slower pace. The future of the mobile ad market in India looks promising considering the penetration of smartphones has reached just 35% and there is a big window of opportunity for mobile manufacturers. With the increasing penetration of smartphones, content consumption is expected to rise as well, which will eventually translate into more revenue for publishers.


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