Which Industry Sectors Dominate Digital Ad Spending in The United States?

Ad spend increasing for top US Business Sectors

Digital Ad Spend on the rise for key market sectors in the United States.

 Today, most people appreciate the importance of digital advertising as a promotional medium. As the public’s reliance upon a host of mobile tech devices has increased during recent years, businesses have gravitated in large numbers towards multimedia and social advertising campaigns. Indeed, the role of digital ads appears to have expanded dramatically within a comparatively brief span of time. 

Recently, Marketing Charts reported findings collected during a ground-breaking e Marketer survey. The research offers fascinating insights into the types of commercial enterprises responsible for placing digital advertising in the United States. It confirms the economic impact of this new medium; during the 12 month period ending in July, 2018, companies purchased an astounding $107.3 billion in digital ad buys. If accurate, the data suggests digital ads now surpass conventional TV advertising by some $30 billion! 

An Ongoing Trend 

Of course, many sources have noted the profound impact of mobile technologies (like cell phones, tablets, and wearable tech) on modern society. It likely surprises no one market analysts foresee continued heavy spending on digital ads during the three year period between 2016 and 2019. The U.S. economy will witness healthy projected estimated growth rates of 14.9% in digital ad spending during this period. Much of that money will likely contribute to ads designed specifically for mobile devices. 

Some sectors of the economy anticipate even higher digital ad spending increases, however. Just consider some of these industries and their estimated rates of increased digital ad buys: 


  • Entertainment Companies (17.7%)
  • Communications Media (16.8%)
  • Consumer Electronics And Computer Goods (16.8%)
USA digital ad spend growth.

 Account executives will still obtain new digital ad buys from loyal customers in industries which frequently market heavily in other mediums, too, of course. Among the economic sectors with the slowest rate of growth in digital ad spot purchases,anticipate slower ongoing increases in digital advertising from three groups: 


  • The Healthcare And Pharmaceutical Industry (11.7%)
  • The Travel Industry (13.2%)
  • Telecom Companies (13.5%)


In many cases, these rates of growth likely rank near the bottom due top previous heavy utilization of multimedia advertising already. Across the United States, savvy marketers have awakened to the impressive potential of digital ads to spur increased consumer interest and attention. 

Heavy Hitters This Year 

In terms of current industry spending, which economic sectors in the USA presently devote the most dollars to placing digital ads? Perhaps not surprisingly, retailers lead the way. A growing number of brick-and-mortar stores have discovered benefits in wooing online consumers. This year alone, retail establishments accounted for over one fifth (21.9%) of all digital advertising nationwide. They have expended an impressive $23.5 billion to reach prospective customers in the United States. 

Automakers have also taken this message to heart. They account for an estimated 12.6% of this year’s digital ad spending, and have committed over $13 billion towards this effort during the past 12 months alone. These results should please advertising industry executives as the competitive holiday auto sales season approaches its climax. Other prominent purchasers of digital ads during the past 12 months include the financial services industry (over $13 billion spent so far), telecommunications firms (over $11 billion in ad buys) and the consumer goods sector (over $9 billion). Numerous companies in these industries hope to cultivate online customers for their goods and services. 

An Exciting Future 

Digital advertising has enjoyed rapid growth during recent years. This trend shows little sign of ending in the near future. This situation bodes well for many advertising agencies and multimedia content production companies.