France and Germany Digital Ad Spending Update Q2 2020

The COVID-19 Effect Slashes Millions from Ad Budgets

About This Report
Total ad spending in France and Germany will fall this year, as a result of the pandemic. Traditional media will suffer most; digital ad spend will rise marginally, to €4.93 billion ($5.51 billion) in France and €7.38 billion ($8.27 billion) in Germany.

Executive Summary

Consumers and businesses around the world are reeling from the effects of the coronavirus pandemic. Many advertisers in France and Germany are cutting budgets as a result—but digital media will still see gains.

How have our forecasts changed for total media ad spending in France and Germany?

Ad spending in both countries will be much lower than we estimated in early March 2020. We now forecast that total media ad spending in France will fall 7.8% this year, to €11.18 billion ($12.52 billion). In Germany, we expect total ad spending of €17.85 billion ($19.98 billion), a 6.9% decline compared with 2019.

Which channels and formats will be most affected by spending cuts?

Out-of-home (OOH) advertising has taken a massive hit due to consumer lockdowns and months-long business closures, and it won’t recover until public spaces are considered safe. This year, OOH spending in France is expected to fall 16.0%, while TV will also see major cuts in ad spending of an estimated 13.5% in France and 11.5% in Germany, despite consumers spending more time at home.

How much has the pandemic slowed digital ad spending in France and Germany?

Budgets for many digital campaigns will be trimmed in 2020. We expect that search ad spending will be hit harder than display. Yet digital will suffer far less than traditional media. Digital ad spending in France is expected to rise 0.5% to €4.93 billion ($5.51 billion) in 2020. Germany should fare slightly better, with spend up 0.8% to €7.38 billion ($8.27 billion).

How will mobile ad spending fare this year and beyond?

Mobile was already the fastest-growing segment of digital advertising in France and Germany, and that trend will continue through the forecast period. But spending increases will be well below the double-digit gains we predicted before the pandemic.

WHAT’S IN THIS REPORT? This report highlights our most recent forecasts for ad spending in France and Germany, including traditional, digital and mobile media. It also looks at the impacts of the pandemic and other developments on ad spending in 2020 and beyond.

KEY STAT: Advertisers in Europe are slashing budgets in the wake of the pandemic. Digital ad spending in France will rise just 0.5% this year, to €4.93 billion ($5.51 billion). In Germany, spending will rise 0.8%, to €7.38 billion ($8.27 billion).

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Karin von Abrams


Monica Peart
Senior Director, Forecasting
Shelleen Shum
Director, Forecasting

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