What are current adblocker trends in Australia compared to the rest of the world?
While the usage of ad blocking services is increasing globally with 30% year-on-year growth between December 2015 and December 2016, ad blocking usage is actually on the decline in Australia. In Australia, ad blocking usage was at 27% usage in 2016 compared to 25% usage in 2017. However, even though usage in Australia is decreasing, awareness about ad blocking services is increasing. In 2016, 41% of Australians had never heard of ad blocking software. By 2017, that number had dropped to 37%.
Below you will find an analysis of trends in the usage/motivations, deployment and demographics of ad blocker software in Australia compared to the rest of the world.
usage and motivations
In Australia, ad blocker software had seen a steady increase in usage leading up to 2016, where usage numbers reached the high of 27%. Australia is now experiencing a period of stabilization in the usage of ad blocking software, with the slight decline in usage to 25% in 2017. Australians report that the number one reason for using ad blocking software is "fear of obtaining viruses", although "too many ads" is a top driver as well. The number one reason for disabling ad blocker software is that the software “prevents me from seeing content”.
Globally, the usage of ad blocker software continues to increase up to 30% in December 2016, with most of the increase coming from the Asia-Pacific region. It seems that the North American and Western European markets for ad blocker software have stabilized in 2017, but emerging markets for the software such as those in China, South America and parts of Africa continue to push global usage higher.
Global motivations for using ad blocking services seem to mirror motivations in Australia, with the top reasons globally being "interruptive ad formats" and "virus/malware concerns". Globally, an overwhelming majority (74%) of users will not turn off their ad blocking software when prompted to do so by a web page, instead choosing to simply leave the page entirely. This is contrary to Australia, where 60% of people whom have been prompted to turn off their ad blocking software in order to view a web page have done so on at least one occasion.
In Australia, ad blocking software is more commonly deployed on desktop than on mobile, though this a decreasing trend. In 2017, 21% of people in Australia used ad blocking services on desktop compared to 5% on mobile. In 2016, those figures stood at 24% and 6% respectively, which shows that the preference for desktop deployment is declining as more people begin utilizing ad blocking software on their mobile device.
Globally, mobile ad blocking software usage is greater than ad blocking software usage for desktop, with 380 million mobile devices worldwide using ad blocking software in December 2016 compared to only 236 million desktops. This trend is primarily driven by the Asia-Pacific, where 94% of global mobile ad block usage occurs. Conversely, 68% of desktop ad block usage occurs in North America and Europe. It is expected that in the coming years, the usage of ad blocking software on mobile devices in North America and Europe will increase steadily to eventually outperform desktop usage.
In Australia, ad blocking software is most commonly used by men. 28% of Australian men use the software compared to 23% of Australian females. This mirrors the global picture, where 39% of males use the software compared to 32% of females. It is important to note that the percentage gap between males and females using the software has decreased, and is expected to continue to do so as the software becomes more well-known.
While no data was found for age range specifically in Australia, globally we found that ad block software users tend to be age 16 to 34. Ad blocking software users also tend to be better educated and live in suburban/urban areas (as opposed to rural areas).
Globally, the use of ad blocking software continues to increase, mostly driven by users in the Asia-Pacific region and parts of Africa. Mobile usage globally is greater than desktop usage, again driven by high mobile usage in the Asia-Pacific region. These global trends are converse to trends in Australia, where overall usage has begun to stabilize at around 25% of the Australian population and desktop usage far surpasses mobile usage.