By the end of next year, about a third of internet users in the States will be blocking ads, up from 20% in 2015, according to a recent eMarketer study (paywalled link). The study, which defines an ad-blocker user as “an internet user who accesses the internet at least once a month via any device that has an ad-blocker enabled,” also estimates that 26.3% of U.S. netizens are using an ad blocker this year. The silver lining here, however, seems to be that the growth rate of ad-blocker users is gonna slow down a bit, declining from 35% to 24% next year.
What Brands Need To Do
Here at the Lab, we have been keeping a close eye on the rise of ad-blocking since last May. In fact, it is a fundamental part of the trend of Ad Avoidance that we highlighted in our Outlook 2016 report. This eMarketer study is evident of ad-blocking’s continued prevalence and the growing consumer demand for a better online experience.
For brand advertisers, this means two things. First, brands need to work closely with agencies and media owners to take full advantage of the digital tools available to create leaner ads, deliver a less clustered ad experience, and ensure the viewability of their ads. Second, brands should also try exploring some non-conventional ad formats such as event sponsorships, branded content, or native advertising to reach consumers who have opted to block ads.