Marketers operating in Europe, the Middle East and Africa (EMEA) increased spending on pay per click (PPC) advertising by 204 per cent in the third quarter, a new Covario report has shown.

The company said that this year-on-year surge contrasts sharply with the four per cent decline recorded between the first three months of 2007 and 2008.

It attributed about ten to 15 per cent of third quarter growth to currency issues as the US dollar continued to weaken throughout the year.

Moreover, spending on PPC actually constituted a smaller proportion of overall ad expenditure in the third quarter compared with 2007, Covario noted.

"We are cautiously optimistic about paid search spend in 2009," said Craig Macdonald of Covario.

"However, we do expect paid search spending growth to slow over the next two quarters as a result of the severe economic conditions," he added.

According to a new JupiterResearch study for Marin Software, PPC spending could increase by 22 per cent on average for those spending more than $50,000 (£28,977) a month on search if technical issues were resolved.

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