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US Digital Display Advertising 2020

A Guide to eMarketer’s Complete Forecast

About This Report
Display ad spending in the US will rise by 5.5% this year, despite the pandemic. This report outlines our complete estimates of digital display ad spending, including breakouts by format, transaction method, industry, major ad sellers and more.
Table of Contents

Executive Summary

Digital ad growth is taking a serious hit this year from the coronavirus and related recession. But display ad spending will still post 5.5% in annual growth, thanks to increased investments in video ads, mobile, connected TV (CTV) and programmatic transactions.

How much has the pandemic slowed down digital display ad spending?

Earlier this year, we expected US digital display ad spending to rise by 19.2% in 2020 and reach almost $85 billion. That’s not going to happen now—but spending will still rise by 5.5%. Spending will rebound next year to growth of almost 23%.

How will display ad spending be transacted?

The vast majority of digital display spending goes through programmatic pipes, and the share is continuing to increase as more CTV inventory becomes available through this infrastructure. Programmatic penetration continues to increase across mobile and CTV, though desktop- and laptop-based ads are becoming more likely to be purchased through traditional means.

What are major areas of growth and change within display?

CTV is a major growth area, which was true before the pandemic and is still the case, with cord-cutting losses to linear TV higher than ever before. Video ads are the main growth driver of display across channels, with growth occurring more than twice as fast as the total. Mobile spending, made up largely of social and native advertising, will also remain relatively strong.

WHAT’S IN THIS REPORT? This report explains our complete forecasts of digital display ad spending, including device and format breakouts, company revenues and programmatic transaction methods.

KEY STAT: Display is driving digital advertising’s growth during this year’s recession. Within display, increased investments will be heavily concentrated on mobile, video and programmatic ads.

Here’s what’s in the full report


Exportable files for easy reading, analysis and sharing.


Reliable data in simple displays for presentations and quick decision making.

18expert perspectives

Insights from industry and company leaders.

Table of Contents

  1. Executive Summary
  2. The Digital Display Ad Universe
  3. Programmatic Display
  4. Native Display
  1. Spotlight on Audio Ads
  2. The Future of Display
  3. Key Takeaways
  4. Glossary
  1. eMarketer Interviews
  2. Read Next
  3. Media Gallery

Charts in This Report

Interviewed for This Report

Melissa Burdick
Co-Founder and President
Interviewed July 17, 2020
Kerel Cooper
Senior Vice President, Global Marketing
Interviewed July 23, 2020
Ryan Fleisch
Adobe Advertising Cloud
Head of Product Marketing
Interviewed July 27, 2020
Jeremy Hlavacek
Watson Advertising
Chief Revenue Officer
Interviewed April 6, 2020
Walter Knapp
Interviewed July 27, 2020
Will Margiloff
Zeta Global
Chief Strategy Officer and President, Programmatic
Interviewed July 27, 2020
Hiten Mistry
Senior Vice President, Product Management
Interviewed April 7, 2020
Ari Paparo
Interviewed July 23, 2020
Jon Schulz
Interviewed April 13, 2020
Tim Sims
The Trade Desk
Chief Revenue Officer
Interviewed April 21, 2020
Scott Thomson
Method Media Intelligence
Chief Operating Officer
Interviewed July 23, 2020
April Weeks
Executive Vice President, Media Services and Operations
Interviewed July 24, 2020
Johanna Bauman
Interviewed April 27, 2020
Andy Ellenthal
Interviewed May 13, 2020
Ben Holmes
Vice President, Programmatic Demand
Interviewed July 27, 2020
Jeff Kudishevich
Senior Vice President, Publisher Operations
Interviewed June 17, 2020
Abhay Singhal
InMobi Marketing Cloud
Interviewed April 6, 2020
Gila Wilensky
President, US
Interviewed July 27, 2020


Nicole Perrin


Ross Benes
Eric Haggstrom
Forecasting Analyst
Rini Mukhopadhyay
Forecasting Analyst
Oscar Orozco
Senior Forecasting Analyst
Shelleen Shum
Director, Forecasting
Yoram Wurmser
Principal Analyst
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