So I’ve been watching revenue estimates for the paid search marketplace lately, and I’m confused. The target for 2006 was $6 billion, set a few years ago by Piper. We’re clearly past that – and a year early. But the numbers are all over the place lately. Here’s a quote from the Kelsey Group, for example:
“Paid search advertising may well reach $7 billion in 2005,” said Neal Polachek, senior vice president, research and consulting, The Kelsey Group.
OK, so…Google is going to do about $6 billion in revenues this year. Toss out AOL and Ask, as they are in that gross number. But Yahoo is not. They do at least a billion and a half more in search revenues. Then there are the second tier players, who have to throw in a few more hundred million bucks here and there. And what about the Yellow Pages folks?
Anyway, with just Google and Yahoo’s results to date, we’re way past $7 billion. Right? Or maybe Kelsey is not counting AdSense as paid search? Whose numbers do you believe?