Ad blocker usage drops marginally despite growing awareness

Arvind Hickman
By Arvind Hickman | 22 June 2017

The use of ad blockers in Australia has dropped marginally over the past six months even though more people are becoming aware of the technology, new research has found.

A quarter of Australians online said they used an ad blocker in April, which is a slight drop on the 27% who reported using them in October. During the same period, the awareness of ad blockers increased from 59% to 63%.

The study is the second 'Ad Blocking In Australia' report by Pureprofile for IAB Australia. It indicates ad blocker use in Australia is stabilising, following a similar pattern in other markets such as the UK, where the level is 22%.

The penetration of mobile ad blocking is significantly lower than desktop, with only 5% using an ad blocker on their smartphone.

Fear of obtaining viruses was cited as the top reason consumers install ad blockers and the main reason they are switched off is when they interrupt the viewing experience.

Sixty per cent of people with ad blockers said they were concerned about the quantity and intrusive nature of some digital ad formats.

“Whilst it is positive news that the use of ad blocking appears to be stabilising in Australia, it is imperative that the advertising industry continues to double down on our efforts to evolve and improve the ad experience for consumers,” IAB Australia CEO Vijay Solanki said.

“As mobile emerges as the channel of choice for many consumers, it will be key to ensure that mobile advertising respects the close relationship that a consumer has with their mobile phones and adheres to the principles of providing lighter, relevant and higher quality advertising experiences.”



Charts courtesy of 'Ad Blocking In Australia' report by Pureprofile for IAB Australia.


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