Search Engine Marketing firm Efficient Frontier released more Google spending data for the month of February. Same-advertiser spending in the US was as we reported last week: February up a paltry 4% versus 7% in January*. For comparison, Google reported Q4 US spending up 40%.
These, therefore, are yet more data points suggesting a major deceleration in Google’s US business. (Note: Efficient Frontier’s blog post does not include the 4% and 7% numbers. A source says these are numbers the firm reported in an internal email that was leaked to RBC. The firm’s blog post just mentions spending excluding mortgage-related ads, which was up a stronger 19% in February versus 20% in January).*
The Google news wasn’t all bad, though. EF also says that UK and European same-advertiser spending–i.e., not counting new clients or lost clients–is strong. UK spending jumped to 69% year-over-year, with the rest of Europe up more than 100%. This compares to Google’s reported Q4 growth in the UK of 44% and “rest of world” of 75%.”
If EF’s February data is reflective of Google’s overall revenue, the strong UK and Europe data would somewhat offset the US deceleration. It is important to note, however, that EF’s European business was very small a year ago, so the percentage gains may not be meaningful.
Obviously, these are single-month data points from a single SEM firm, so they should be viewed in that context. For more detail on Google’s recent performance and estimates, please see our Google Financial Analysis spreadsheet.
*UPDATE: There is much confusion about the two sets of numbers Efficient Frontier has released. To be clear: The “19%” and “20%” spending figures for February and January exclude mortgage-related spending, whereas the 4%/7% numbers include mortgage-related spending. Obviously, for those trying to assess spending trends on Google, the latter numbers are far more meaningful. A reader suggests that EF switched to the “non-mortgage same advertiser” numbers to put a more positive spin on the Google data.
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