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The long-awaited moment when online advertising eclipses TV is near

AP Photo/Ahn Young-joon
The days of TV’s dominance are numbered.
By Alice Truong
Published Last updated This article is more than 2 years old.

Digital marketers know the internet is the future, but online advertising has always been a fraction of the huge budgets spent on TV ads. That’s expected to change by 2019.

PriceWaterhouseCoopers (paywall) estimates that online advertising, which in 2014 brought in $49.45 billion in revenue in the US, will climb to $83.89 billion by 2019. That year will prove to be a major tipping point in advertising, with online ads overtaking television for the first time. Over this same period, TV advertising in the US will grow from $69.2 billion to $81.05 billion.

The shift partly reflects the time that consumers spend on the internet. With people spending more time on their mobile devices, advertisers are looking to greatly expand their presence there. Of all online ad formats, mobile is expected to see the biggest growth, from $640 million in 2010 to $38.85 billion in 2019.

That said, PriceWaterhouseCoopers expects 2016 to be an especially lucrative year for television, with both the Summer Olympics and US presidential election taking place then.

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