Mobile Providers Dominated Display Buying in 2009

Mobile phone network operators AT&T and Verizon Communications purchased the most online display ads in the U.S. during 2009, according to data from comScore’s Ad Metrix service.

In its 2009 digital review, the measurement firm estimates the two firms bought 84.3 billion and 56.8 billion impressions, respectively, during the 12 month period. Sprint Nextel also featured in the top 10, with 26.2 billion impressions over the course of the year.

Financial services firms featured heavily, too, with Experian Interactive and Scottrade in the fourth and fifth spots.

Overall, comScore reckons U.S. users viewed a total of 4.3 trillion display ads over the course of the year, up 21 percent versus 2008. It says that growth was driven by an 8 percent increase in the amount of users exposed to ads, and a 12 percent increase in ad frequency.

Top 10 U.S. Online Display Advertisers by Number of Impressions, December 2008 to November 2009
Advertiser Number of Impressions (000)
AT&T, Inc. 84,336
Verizon Communications Corp 56,818
Experian Interactive 54,106
Scottrade 41,071
eBay 32,339
Ask Network 31,920
Microsoft 30,936
Netflix 27,997
Vertrue 27,555
Sprint Nextel Corp 26,224
Source: comScore

ComScore Ad Metrix measures online display advertisements, including static and rich media ads, viewed by U.S. consumers. The estimates reflect both IAB and non-IAB display ad sizes, but do not include text and video ads.

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