Who Buys All Those Google Ads

Google Chrome Mac Screen shot 2009-12-08 at 3.29.24 PM
Google Chrome Mac

Damn, that’s a lot of web advertising. Especially given the ubiquity of adblockers, and so forth

Google cleared $37.9 billion in 2011 revenue, which equates to more than $3 billion a month, mostly from those little text ads next to your search results that neither you or anybody you know will admit to ever clicking on.

Insurance and finance buys for Google Adsense words accounted for $4.2 billion of that total — more than 10 percent — according to Larry Kim, the founder of Wordstream, a company that sells software to analyze text ad campaigns and commissioned the infographic above. The most expensive search term in that niche was “Self employed health insurance” — not surprising in the aftermath of the recession and the Affordable Care Act, which will eventually require nearly everyone to have health care insurance (unless the Supreme Court nullifies the law later this year).

That phrase cost $43.39 per click, nearly $10 more than the next most expensive term, “cheap car insurance”. (That’s not too surprising given that the long-term worth of a new insurance client might be worth losing money on them the first year.)

Retailers were a somewhat distant second, but still accounted for a hefty $2.8 billion in ad buys, and were led by e-commerce behemoth Amazon. Inexplicably, the top-priced search term in this niche was for “zumba dance DVD.” Or, perhaps the explanation is all those self-employed people looking to lower the cost of those health insurance policies they’ll need by finally getting started on a high-impact cardio routine.

(click here to continue reading Who Buys All Those Google Ads? An Infographic Breakdown | Epicenter | Wired.com, and see the infographic Wired created)

and compiled thus:

“I compiled these revenue estimates by using our own trillion-keyword database and the Google Keyword Tool to determine the top 10 million most popular search queries in 2011, as well as their average cost-per-click prices as paid by advertisers,” Kim told Wired. “I used WordStream PPC technologies to categorize the huge keyword list by industry, such as “Finance & Insurance,” then applied a model that weighed the relative percentages of each industry’s revenue (keyword volume * average cost per click) to Google’s 2011 revenues, excluding non-advertising revenues.
“The top five advertisers in each industry and their estimated spend was obtained by using data from SpyFu.com, then applying the same categorization analysis.”

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