IAB Australia has announced that Australia’s online advertising market has continued its growth, despite the financial conditions hitting other mediums hard.

According to figures released today in its ‘Online Advertising Expenditure’ report, compiled by PricewaterhouseCoopers, the IAB revealed that online advertising expenditure in Australia for the quarter ending 30 September 2009 was the highest ever recorded, totalling $466 million.

Search and directories accounted for 51% of the total advertising expenditure (up 12%), followed by general display (26%) and classifieds (23%).

The report also captured the online advertising expenditure within the general display category for video, email and also so-called CPM (cost per thousand, often referred to as ‘brand’) and direct response (often referred to as ‘performance’) advertising, and a hybrid model combining both pricing models.

Online video advertising which represented 4% of the general display category, is on par with the US and UK, and is expected to increase sharply in future quarters, with CPM making up 75% of the general display category at only 22% reported for response and 3% for hybrid.

“In the context of the recorded double-digit decline of the Australian advertising market in recent quarters, the continued growth of the online advertising industry shows remarkable resilience. Online advertising is gaining a greater share of the $13 billion Australian advertising industry as marketers and their agencies continue to invest their advertising budgets where they have the most confidence,” said Paul Fisher, CEO of IAB Australia.

The finance, computers/communications and motor vehicles sectors continued to be the dominant industries using general display advertising, while growth was recorded in the FMCG, retail, government and health, beauty and pharmaceuticals industry sectors as more advertisers increase their advertising investment into online.