HONG KONG -- Digital advertising continues to expand in the Asia-Pacific region as more people gain access to the Internet and make use of mobile devices like smartphones and tablets.
Digital advertising expenditures in the region totaled $46.6 billion in 2014, an increase of 30% from the prior year, according to U.S. market research company eMarketer. The market is seen growing 22% in 2015.
China's digital advertising jumped 45% to $23.7 billion in 2014, accounting for 50.9% of the market for the entire region. Japan was second in the region, with advertising expenditures of $9.1 billion, up 7%, followed by Australia, where digital advertising rose 18% to $4.5 billion.
Fueling China's rapid growth has been mobile advertising on smartphones and tablets. Such advertising surged to $6.4 billion in 2014, more than seven times the $900 million spent the previous year. Mobile ads accounted for 27% of all digital advertising in China.
Indonesia experienced the sharpest growth in digital advertising, with expenditures leaping 98% to $500 million. The country has a low Internet accessibility rate compared with other Southeast Asian nations and thus has many companies that still focus ad outlays on traditional media such as television, newspapers and magazines.
However, eMarketer sees advertisers there continuing to shift to digital media as use of the Internet and smartphones spreads rapidly. In terms of digital advertising markets, Indonesia is projected to eclipse India in 2016 and South Korea in 2018.
The market research company has also projected market trends through 2018. It expects digital advertising expenditures that year to reach $252 billion globally, roughly double 2013's total. Digital ads will account for 35.5% of all advertising expenditures in 2018, an increase of 12.3 points. The Asia-Pacific region is expected to surpass North America in market share in 2017, becoming the world's largest digital advertising market.