Study: Credit Advertising Online Up 93 Percent in 2001

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Online advertising for consumer credit services rose 93 percent so far this year, from 8 billion ad impressions in the first quarter to 15.4 billion in the third, according to a study by the Jupiter Media Metrix AdRelevance service.


The company said that consumer credit services has become the largest segment for online advertising within the financial services industry, which is among the three most advertised industries online.


"It's understandable that the significant growth of online advertising for credit services coincides with a softening economy and the approach of the holiday shopping season," said Charles Buchwalter, vice president of media research at Jupiter Media Metrix, New York.


He also said that credit card companies are aggressively trying to increase their customer bases, while credit counseling services are working just as hard to attract people who are trying to get out of debt.


The study also found that credit card companies were responsible for 79 percent of online consumer credit advertising this year. Visa and MasterCard alone were responsible for 74 percent of that advertising this year, with Visa responsible for 59 percent and MasterCard responsible for 15 percent.


Consumer credit services had the highest number of ad impressions per advertiser each week this year among all financial services segments, Jupiter Media Metrix said. The average consumer credit advertiser had 75.9 million impressions in the first quarter and 146.7 million in the third quarter.


The research firm noted that Providian Financial's Getsmart.com service was the leading consumer credit and financial services advertiser in the third quarter with 5.6 billion impressions. Traffic to Getsmart.com, a financial services portal, rose 386 percent from 1.1 million unique visitors in January to 5.2 million in September.


James Van Dyke, research director of payment and brokerage offerings at Jupiter Media Metrix, said online advertising continues to be an effective strategy for financial services looking to expand their customer bases.


"Credit offerings are an ideal way for financial institutions to attract new online customers because they appeal to people who have significantly less tenure than those interested in services such as online banking, bill payment and brokerage offerings," he said.


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