Amazon and telecoms brands spend big on paid search, reports Kantar Media

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UK retail spend on paid search increased 24% year-on-year in the first half of 2016, according to new research released by the Kantar Media company AdGooroo.

According to the study – which examined Google.co.uk desktop text ad activity on the top 250 retail product keywords during the six months up to July 2016 – advertisers spent £26.7m on the keywords examined in the first half of the year, compared with £21.6m during the same period of 2015. Online giant Amazon.co.uk led the field in spend in the first six months of 2016, followed by Apple and John Lewis.

Retailers in the telecoms sector – including o2.co.uk and carphonewarehouse.co.uk – dominated the remainder of the list, making up 6 of the top 20 entries and spending a total of more than £2.2m. According to AdGooroo’s study, the presence of so many telecoms in the retail ranking is driven by the strength of just 12 mobile-specific terms in the top 250 keywords, which accounted for £4.5m, or 16.85%, of total paid search ad spend on the keyword group during the first six months of the year.

However, apparel & accessories keywords were the dominant category among the top 250 retail product keywords, with 86 apparel terms generating nearly £6.7m in paid search ad spend during the first six months of 2016, or 25% of the total spend across all 250 terms.

“Our findings clearly show a strong start to the year for retailers in terms of paid search ad spend compared with the first half of 2015,” said Richard Stokes, CEO at AdGooroo. “In fact, according to AdGooroo data, the 24% year-over-year increase in paid search spend we measured in the retail sector outpaced the UK search industry at large, which increased paid search ad spend by just 7.4% in the first half of 2016 compared to the same period in 2015.”

The top five UK retailers by keyword ad spend in the six-month period were:

  1. amazon.co.uk
  2. apple.com
  3. johnlewis.com
  4. o2.co.uk
  5. carphonewarehouse.com

The top five retail product keywords by paid search spend in the six-month period were:

  1.  “iphone 6s”
  2. “engagement rings”
  3. “samsung galaxy s6”
  4. “business cards”
  5. “mobile phones”

Top 20 advertisers on retail keyword group by paid search spend:

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Top 20 UK retail product keywords by paid search spend:

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Top 250 UK retail product keywords grouped by category as a percentage of total spend:

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