The growth of online marketing continues unabated in the US with the news that revenues from the market neared $17 billion (£8.6 billion) in 2006.

Figures released by the Interactive Advertising Bureau and PricewaterhouseCoopers reveal that revenues in the internet marketing sector reached $16.9 million – representing an all-time high and outstripping the researchers’ estimates by $0.5 billion.

The revenues for last year were up 35 per cent on 2005, with search marketing making up 40 per cent of the year total.

Peter Petrusky of PricewaterhouseCoopers, commented: "The results for 2006 show the internet continues to offer marketers the widest spectrum of advertising formats, from search-based text ads to dynamic rich-media and broadband video ads."

This month, Nielsen//NetRatings revealed that Google was the most frequently used search engine in the US in April.

Google took the majority share (55 per cent) of all searches conducted in the US, ahead of Yahoo! which claimed 21.9 per cent of the market.

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