Publishers are set to lose $27 billion by 2020 thanks to ad blockers such as AdBlock Plus, a new report by Juniper Research says. Keeping in mind that the digital advertising spending worldwide sits at $197.48 billion (expected to grow to $252bn by 2018) according to Statista, that means ad blockers will account for almost 10 per cent of total digital advertising market.
The report, entitled Worldwide Digital Advertising 2016 - 2020, says ad blockers are only going to get stronger, more sophisticated, and used by more people. Millennials are at the forefront of ad blocker adoption, it was also said.
At the same time, publishers and the advertising industry won’t sit idle, though, they will try and find a solution. Still, things are not looking great for the ad industry, as it’s not just app developers who are helping people block ads -- network operators are looking to include ad blockers network-wide, and Apple has already implemented an ad blocking feature in iOS 9.
Research author Sam Barker added: "Adoption is being driven by consumer concerns over mobile data usage and privacy. They are also incentivized to adopt the technology in order to reduce page load times".
Juniper says there are quality initiatives, such as the Google’s AMP (Accelerated Mobile Page), which aims to increase trust in digital ads and discourage use of ad blockers. It also says small publishers are faced with an existential problem, as the majority of them rely solely on ad revenue to stay afloat.