Facebook to pass Yahoo as top seller of online display ads, study says

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Facebook is on track to pass Yahoo in 2011 as the No. 1 online display-ad selling company in the U.S., according to a new study.

The world’s most popular social network will see its U.S. display-ad revenue grow this year by 80.9% to $2.19 billion, giving it a projected 17.7% share of the market, according to estimates from the research group EMarketer.


Yahoo will fall to an estimated 13.1% slice of the display-ad market from a leading 14.4% share in 2010, EMarketer said Monday.

‘Facebook’s supreme popularity -- both in terms of numbers of people and amount of time they spend there -- creates a plethora of display-ad impressions,’ David Hallerman, EMarketer’s principal analyst, said in the study. ‘That popularity is also boosting what advertisers will pay for its display ads.’

Facebook’s display-ad revenue is set to nearly double in 2011, but that’s ‘actually a slowdown in growth for the social networking giant, which posted triple-digit display ad revenue growth in 2009 and 2010 when its display revenues were at relatively low levels,’ EMarketer said in its report. ‘Next year, growth will slow further to just 31.3%.’

But even with the predicted slowdowns, Facebook is set to sit atop the display ad market in 2012 too, the group said, predicting that Facebook would have a 19.4% share next year, with Yahoo at a second-place 12.5%.


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-- Nathan Olivarez-Giles