An analyst at research firm eMarketer has suggested that spending on search marketing will grow as the recession forces businesses to look to the most cost-effective strategies.

According to David Hallerman, the accountability and measurability of pay per click services and natural optimisation will also help the sector to continue its double-digit growth over the next five years.

"In order to survive, companies have to maintain an online presence. Search is an essential tool for driving traffic to the company’s site," he commented.

Mr Hallerman added that the sheer number of organisation turning to search campaigns will provide additional impetus for growth within the industry as spending on other platforms such as display ads continues to contract.

A fifth of all UK advertising spending currently goes online, according to Ofcom.

This is compared with 13 per cent of US advertising spending taking place on the internet, the communications regulator noted.

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