Smartphone, tablet ads less memorable than those on the desktop
With billions of users—and billions in ad revenues—Facebook’s eye is turning toward mobile, where ads have begun to roll out to the newsfeed. Whether users’ eyes, and, in turn, marketer dollars, will follow remains an open question.
Online eye tracking study firm EyeTrackShop found in July that while US participants were more likely to view and dwell on ads on tablets than on the desktop web, ad recall was lower. For ads on smartphones, all three metrics were lower than those for desktop web ads and tablet ads.
Facebook has only begun rolling out ads on mobile platforms relatively recently, but industry experts expect them to be critical to the company’s ongoing success as more users spend increased time on the site via their phones and tablets.
EyeTrackShop’s study included both a survey portion and an eye-tracking portion, and the eye-tracking portion found that depending on mobile ads’ placement, their likelihood of being viewed could drop dramatically. Because of the smaller screen size of smartphones and the need to scroll, if a Sponsored Story did not appear very early in the newsfeed, users were unlikely to see it. On the web, by contrast, ads always appear above the fold, virtually guaranteeing the user will see them.
Jeff Bander, North American President of EyeTrackShop, told eMarketer, “We all know that the future is on mobile, but it’s very early in terms of the model for how advertising will best work on mobile.”
Estimates of how much ad revenue Facebook will generate on mobile vary depending largely on assumptions made about how many ads users will see. J.P. Morgan reported in June that Facebook could see quarterly mobile ad revenues between $99 million and $2.15 billion—a huge range based on scenarios involving an average of 0.5 to 2 impressions per visit for monthly active mobile users. Credit Suisse, which assumes viewers will see more ad impressions but that Facebook will charge significantly lower CPMs than J.P. Morgan believes, estimated the same month that the site’s mobile ad revenues would reach just $44.5 million this year, hitting $2.66 billion by 2017.
Corporate subscribers have access to all eMarketer analyst reports, articles, data and more. Join the over 750 companies already benefiting from eMarketer’s approach. Learn more.
Check out today’s other articles, “SearsLatino Embraces Cultural Variations in Mexico and the US” and “Mobile Video Soars in Japan.”