The UK market for search engine marketing is set to grow to £1.41 billion by the end of this year, according to new research.

Paid search, which covers pay-per-click and paid listings searches, is to see the biggest growth spurt as it nears the £1 billion mark, an increase of 67 per cent on 2005 figures, E-consultancy’s 2006 Search Marketing Buyer’s Guide reports.

Search engine optimisation is also riding the search-marketing craze, and is expected to double in worth, reaching a value of £147 million by the end of 2006, E-consultancy predicts.

Analyst at E-consultancy Linus Gregoriadis said: “Marketers will continue to increase their investment in [search engine marketing] because of the attractive returns and its accountability.

“The market will remain extremely buoyant through 2006, though we expect the upward trajectory of paid search to flatten slightly as the market becomes more mature.”

Search engine optimisation, otherwise known as ‘natural’ or ‘organic’ search, may currently be worth less than paid search, but is predicted to grow at a faster rate as ‘natural listings’ on their search engine visibility becomes more important to companies.

The study also found that search engine is being consciously incorporated into companies’ marketing strategies.

Related Topics: General Marketing