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Google feels the bear market as crypto ad revenues slip since July

The latest earnings call from Google’s parent company, Alphabet, highlighted decreased search advertising spending from financial services and cryptocurrency subcategories.

Alphabet released its earnings report for Q3 on Oct. 25, outlining a 6% increase in revenue totaling $69.1 billion in comparison to Q3 last year. Revenues were down slightly from Q2 2022, dropping from $69.7 billion.

However, the breakdown of revenues from Google Services, which includes its advertising earnings, showed that this segment increased from $58.8 billion to $61.3 billion over the past year.

Philipp Schindler, chief business officer of Google, noted particular strife in the financial and the cryptocurrency sectors, in particular, with notable drops in advertising spending quarter-on-quarter during Alphabet’s earnings call on Oct. 25:

“We did see a pullback in spending by some advertisers in certain areas in search ads. For example, in financial services, we saw a pullback in insurance, loan, mortgage and crypto subcategories.”

Google updated its financial products and services policy in July 2022 to clarify the scope and requirement for adverts relating to cryptocurrency businesses, services and products. This set out rules for advertisers of exchanges and wallet services targeting countries, including France, Germany, South Korea, the Philippines, the United Arab Emirates, Hong Kong and Thailand.

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Given that they met certain regulatory requirements within these jurisdictions, advertisers could continue to promote their crypto-related products and services through Google’s advertising platform.

The change came several months after Google gave crypto-related advertising the green light in August 2021. The multinational tech giant had previously banned crypto- and initial coin offering-related advertisements back in June 2018. 

Global markets and cryptocurrency markets continue to weather difficult times, with the latter enduring what analytics firms like Glassnode have dubbed as the worst bear market on record.

Nevertheless, the decreased advertising spending from the cryptocurrency sector does not reflect Google’s attitude toward the space. Google announced a partnership with American cryptocurrency exchange Coinbase in October to allow payments for cloud services with Bitcoin (BTC) and Ether (ETH) in 2023.