Keywords: targeted online advertising

By Randeep Grewal

In today’s digital age, the prevalence of targeted online advertising is easily felt. Technology companies are developing increasingly innovative ways for brands to engage with and understand their consumer base on a deeper level. However, the mainstay of these various media continues, at least for now, to be keyword advertising.

Since its inception in 1996, keyword advertising has grown to represent the most significant form of digital marketing globally and the largest revenue stream for most of the world’s major internet search engines. For example, it is estimated that around £3bn is spent annually on search advertising in the UK alone.

Despite recent doubts as to its efficacy (a March 2013 report by eBay comments that ‘results show that brand keyword ads have no short-term benefits, and that returns from all other keywords are a fraction of conventional estimates’), keyword advertising continues to be extremely popular with brands of all sizes and from across a wide range of sectors. Put simply, it has become a conventional form of advertising…

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