Insights

Twitter Ad Portal Traffic is Shrinking: Q2 Preview

July 19, 2022 | Updated August 2, 2022

While Twitter has been busy dealing with the unsolicited takeover offer by Elon Musk – and now the turn to litigation as he tries to walk away from the deal – traffic to its ad buying portal dropped 10.5% year over year in June and 2% for the quarter. Whether the softening of advertiser interest is a result of Musk-induced turmoil or broader market conditions, it’s bad news as the company prepares to report Q2 earnings on July 22.

Ad traffic shifts in reverse 

  • Traffic to ads.twitter.com, the portal where advertisers buy and manage ads, was down 10.5% year over year in June and down 2% for the quarter, according to Similarweb estimates of desktop and mobile web visits. These are signals of a tough quarter.
  • Twitter wasn’t alone in struggling to attract advertiser interest, but for comparison, traffic to TikTok’s ad portal was up 127% in the quarter (although that’s a slowdown from the explosive growth in past quarters) and LinkedIn’s ad portal saw 4.3% growth.
  • Overall growth in total web traffic to the consumer website, twitter.com, used to be in the mid-double digits (+50% year over year in November 2020). Traffic was just 2.6% year-over-year in June. Mobile app access to the service was also up modestly, as measured by daily average users of Twitter’s mobile app for Android, up 3.3% year-over-year.

Twitter ad portal traffic contracts

Visits to ads.twitter.com, the portal where advertisers buy and manage ads, were down 10.5% in June and down 2% for the quarter, according to Similarweb estimates of desktop and mobile web traffic. Until recently, traffic to Twitter’s ad portal had been showing modest year-over-year growth.

Chart: Traffic to Twitter's ad portal

Although all other social networking websites lag far behind facebook.com, Twitter remains one of the laggards in the second tier of social websites.

Chart: Social media ad portals

Overall, Twitter sees modest traffic growth

Overall traffic for twitter.com is growing modestly, doing better in recent months than advertiser traffic. In June, visits to twitter.com were up 2.6% even as visits to ads.twitter.com fell 10.5%.

Chart: Twitter.com growth slows

On mobile, Twitter is also seeing modest growth. On Android, daily active users averaged 3.3% higher in June, year over year.

Exciting times, but not for advertisers

Lately, news about Twitter has been generating excitement for all the wrong reasons. Contention with Elon Musk has put spambots in the news, casting doubt on the value of Twitter advertising, just as other economic pressures undermine ad volumes as well.

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Report By: David F. Carr, Senior Insights Manager

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