Look Back at the History of Pay Per Click Advertising

Online advertising continues to become more and more important as technology cements its importance to our modern culture. Pay per click advertising has been around for decades, but it has changed and adapted along with the Internet itself. If you’re curious about where it started and how it’s come so far, keep reading and take a look back at the history of pay per click advertising.



Pay per click advertising, or PPC, surfaced in its first forms in the mid-1990s. Planet Oasis was the first web directory to document PPC in 1996 with the help of Ark Interface II. Although it didn’t catch on immediately, a few hundred major brands had gotten on board by the end of 1997. Goto.com’s Jeffrey Brewer presented a proof of concept for a PPC search engine in a 1998 TED conference. It was in 1999 that Google began using search engine advertising, and Google AdWords would come to be during the following year.



AdWords was launched in October of 2000, and it gave advertisers a chance to place text ads within Google’s engine. This caused some friction between Google and Goto.com, which had then become Overture. Yahoo! started syndicating Overture ads in 2001 and ended up acquiring them thereafter.



As we move further into the back half of the 2010s, the Internet continues to change, and PPC has become a significant industry. Google AdWords is still one of the top names in PPC advertising, even though Yahoo! and Microsoft formed the Bing search engine to rival Google. As of 2014, a large portion of Google’s annual revenue can be attributed to PPC advertising.

If you’d like to learn about how Google PPC works today, call Anchor Wave at (520) 622-3731 to discuss our services. As you’ll find by visiting our website, we specialize in website design, search engine optimization, and social media management.

Anthony Rivera