U.S. Online Ad Revenues Hit Nearly $6 Billion In The First Quarter

Internet advertising revenues in the U.S. hit $5.9 billion for Q1 2010, representing a 7.5 percent increase over the same period in 2009, according to numbers released moments ago by the Interactive Advertising Bureau in tandem with PricewaterhouseCoopers. This marks the highest first-quarter revenue level ever for the industry.

Nevertheless, revenues came in much lower than the fourth quarter of 2009, when online advertising revenues in the U.S. climbed to $6.3 billion. That said, fourth-quarter results are always higher because of increased spending in the holiday period.

Check out the following chart, which highlights quarterly ad revenue since 2001 (note that dollar figures are rounded):

We reported earlier that the online advertising industry seemed to have shown accelerated growth in the first quarter, with the combined advertising revenues of the four largest players (Google, Yahoo, Microsoft, and AOL) jumping almost 15 percent to $8.8 billion.

Does this mean that the great ad recession of 2009 is now completely history?

If you’re interested in more statistics on the digital advertising space, be sure to check out comScore’s report released earlier today, which offers an overview of the U.S. online display advertising market for Q1 2010.

Data from comScore’s Ad Metrix services shows that U.S. Internet users received a record 1.1 trillion display ads during the first quarter, marking a 15-percent increase versus year ago.

Total U.S. display ad spending in Q1 reached an estimated $2.7 billion, with the average CPM equal to $2.48.

As the Wall Street Journal reported yesterday, Facebook pulled ahead of Yahoo for the first time in the first quarter this year, as it delivered more banner ads to its U.S. users than any other Web publisher, according to comScore.

(Via press release)