It was inevitable, but it’s finally here: Digital advertising businesses like Facebook and Google will be bigger in the US this year than traditional advertising businesses like TV, radio, and newspapers.
New estimates from eMarketer show that US advertisers will spend more than $129 billion on digital advertising in 2019 — more than the $109 billion they plan to spend on “traditional” advertising.
It would mark the first time ever that the US digital ad business made up more than 50 percent of the market.
The digital ad industry in the US has been growing steadily for years, primarily thanks to two behemoths: Facebook and Google. Even though digital advertising was just half the size of the “traditional” ad industry four years ago in 2015, it was only a matter of time before the two swapped roles.
But this tipping point is also a good reminder of how dominant these advertising businesses like Facebook and Google actually are. Despite a year full of conflict — both companies were called before Congress, both companies are at major risk of regulation both in the United States and abroad — their ad businesses did not suffer. Facebook and Google made up a combined 60 percent of the digital ad industry in the US last year, which equates to roughly $65 billion in revenue.