Alphabet, Meta, Amazon, Two Others Attract More Than 50% of Global Ad Spend
The world’s top-five largest media owners – Alphabet, Meta, Amazon, Alibaba and ByteDance – command more than 50% of all global ad investment, according to the latest WARC Media forecast.
Alphabet is the world’s largest media owner by ad revenue, accounting for a quarter of advertiser spend across a portfolio including Google Search, the Google Display Network and YouTube.
This figure is before traffic acquisition costs (TAC) – money paid to publishers for hosting Google ads – and includes revenue from DoubleVerfiy, an ad tech component which does not make share calculations truly like-for-like. But, however sliced, the company’s influence on modern advertising practice is apparent and unwavering.
Meta follows with a share of 13.5% of global spend, up markedly from 12.3% last year and set to grow to 14.0% next year as its ad business recovers strongly from an uncharacteristic period of decline during the second half of last year (due in part to Apple’s introduction of its ATT framework).
With a share of 4.7%, Amazon has now grown to become the third-largest media owner globally thanks to the rapid growth of its retail media business, broken out of our dataset for the first time this edition. Further, Amazon’s share is forecast to reach 5.0% next year and should continue to tick upwards thereafter.
These three companies, combined, are set to account for 43.2% of the global advertising market this year, rising closer to 48% when excluding countries where their platforms are banned.
Alibaba and TikTok-owner Bytedance round out the top five, with estimated shares of 4.3% and 3.6%, respectively (neither company breaks out advertising revenue from their accounts). With all five forecast to record rising income next year, it follows that social media, search and retail media are set to record the strongest deltas.