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The internet now accounts for a quarter of all advertising spend in the UK after growing by 12.8% in 2010 and exceeding £4.1 billion ($6.5 billion)

Guy Phillipson, head of the IAB, said the market was “almost back in its pre-recession heyday” and online spending was “higher than I expected”. “In 2009, brands really began to understand how to use the internet. That has improved in 2010 – a year when budgets have also grown,” he said. The total advertising market grew by 7.2 per cent, with 77 of the top 100 advertisers increasing their spending last year, according to the research group Nielsen. Consumer goods and retail companies raised their online budgets to become two of the four largest spenders on display advertisements. However, the financial sector spent the most in 2010, overtaking entertainment and media, with a 15.2 per cent share, the report said

The UK Independent Newspaper has more