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New UK forecasts show ad market’s value is set to reach£38.8bn this year and top £40bn by 2025

The latest report from the Advertising Association and WARC sheds light on the current state and future projections of the UK advertising market. Here are the key takeaways:

  1. Market Growth: In 2023, the UK’s ad market saw a substantial increase, reaching £36.6bn. This marks the 13th year of growth in the past 14 years. Projections indicate further growth, with ad spend expected to rise to £38.8bn in 2024 and surpass £40bn in 2025.
  2. Online Dominance: Online formats accounted for over 75% of all ad spend in the UK for the first time. Digital formats like search and online display are expected to continue driving growth, capturing a combined 77% share of ad spend.
  3. Comparison with European Markets: The UK advertising industry outpaced key European markets like Germany, France, and Ireland in 2023 and is projected to maintain this trend in 2024.
  4. Sector Performance: Retail and services sectors experienced growth in display ad spend in 2023, with entertainment & leisure contributing significantly to the services sector’s growth.
  5. Seasonal Trends: The Q4 Christmas ad season witnessed significant growth, driven by digital out-of-home, broadcaster video-on-demand, and search, boosted by events like the Rugby World Cup.
  6. 2024 Projections: Economic conditions are expected to improve, leading to increased investment in brand-building campaigns, especially with events like the Men’s Euros and the General Election expected to contribute to growth.
  7. 2025 Outlook: Growth is forecasted across various channels in 2025, including BVOD, search, and online display, as economic conditions are anticipated to become more favorable.
  8. Industry Insights: The shift towards online advertising reflects changing consumer behavior, with businesses focusing on enhancing the customer experience both online and offline.
% change
% change
% change
Online display*11,612.212,925.111.3%6.4%5.5%
of which BVOD845.4979.615.9%14.1%11.0%
Out of home1,181.21,295.39.7%7.2%5.6%
    of which digital749.9841.312.2%9.5%7.3%
Online classified1,110.81,080.8-2.7%-0.6%1.5%
Direct mail1,094.5956.7-12.6%-4.9%-3.3%
National newsbrands825.3773.6-6.3%-3.3%-2.1%
of which online374.5352.8-5.8%-0.8%0.8%
    of which online77.772.2-7.1%7.5%4.1%
Magazine brands553.8503.3-9.1%-5.1%-0.8%
of which online302.2260.8-13.7%-4.8%2.0%
Regional newsbrands505.2454.2-10.1%-3.3%-2.0%
of which online259.2239.4-7.6%-1.7%0.2%
TOTAL UK ADSPEND34,518.536,624.36.1%5.8%4.5%
Note: Broadcaster VOD, digital revenues for newsbrands, magazine brands, and radio station websites are also included within online display and classified totals, so care should be taken to avoid double counting. Online radio includes targeted in-stream radio/audio advertising sold by UK commercial radio companies, together with online S&P inventory.
Source: AA/WARC Expenditure Report, April 2024

Overall, the report paints a positive picture for the UK’s advertising market, with digital formats driving growth and favorable economic conditions expected to support further expansion in the coming years.