More than half of firms in the UK anticipate higher spending on search engine optimisation (SEO) this year, according to the latest report on the search marketing sector from Econsultancy.
About 55 per cent of those responding to the survey said they were going to invest more in SEO in 2009, while 31 per cent plan to maintain their natural search spending levels from last year.
The research also showed that 45 per cent of firms will spend more on pay-per-click marketing in 2009 and 24 per cent intend to increase their online display advertising budgets, in spite of the recession.
Furthermore, the proportion of companies using Twitter as part of their social media campaigns rose from three per cent last year to 49 per cent this year, with 65 per cent also including Facebook in their internet strategies.
"This research provides more proof that companies are turning to digital channels such as paid search and SEO where there is a demonstrable return on investment," commented Linus Gregoriadis, research director at Econsultancy.
Recent Internet Advertising Bureau statistics revealed that UK spending on all online marketing channels rose by 17 per cent last year.