The History and Evolution of Digital Marketing


Posted on January 03,2024

The term Digital Marketing was first used in the 1990s. The digital age took off with the coming of the internet and the development of the Web 1.0 platform. The Web 1.0 platform allowed users to find the information they wanted but did not allow them to share this information over the web. Up until then, marketers worldwide were still unsure of the digital platform. They were not sure if their strategies would work since the internet had not yet seen widespread deployment.
In 1993, the first clickable banner went live, after which HotWired purchased a few banner ads for their advertising. This marked the beginning of the transition to the digital era of marketing. Because of this gradual shift, the year 1994 saw new technologies enter the digital marketplace. The very same year, Yahoo was launched.
Also known as "Jerry's Guide to the World Wide Web" after its founder Jerry Yang, Yahoo received close to 1 million hits within the first year. This prompted wholesale changes in the digital marketing space, with companies optimizing their websites to pull in higher search engine rankings. 1996 saw the launch of a couple of more search engines and tools like HotBot, LookSmart, and Alexa.

Evolution of Digital Marketing 

The 90s
Archie, the first search engine, debuted in the early 1990s, heralding the birth of search. SEO, or Search Engine Optimization, quickly followed.
The first clickable web-ad banners were introduced in 1994. The first identifiable social media site was launched in 1997, with 3.5 million users. In the 1990s, a slew of websites still in use was found, including Google and Yahoo's web search, both of which debuted in 1998.

The Millennial Generation
A massive economic bubble grew in the new millennium. However, the bubble's peak and burst between 2000 and 2002 harmed many businesses. Many new sites were launched in the 2000s as the economy recovered from the boom, including the beginnings of LinkedIn in 2002, Myspace and WordPress in 2003, and Facebook in 2004. In the early 2000s, mobile text messaging marketing became increasingly popular.

The Mobile Era
The latter half of the decade saw increased marketing and sales, with Amazon's e-commerce sales surpassing $10 billion. Over the next few years, mobile app culture expanded with the introduction of Whatsapp, Instagram, and Snapchat to the digital world.

The Present 
Today, 65% of an individual's digital media time is spent on a mobile device. The digital advertising industry is now valued at around $200 billion, with Google Ad Words accounting for 96% of the company's revenue. With an estimated 3.1 billion online users, social networking has led the digital marketing revolution. The rise of bloggers and Instagram has resulted in a $1 billion industry for influencers, which are anticipated to grow. Digital marketing is expected to grow in the coming years, with many new developments and changes in this exciting industry.

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