We use cookies to personalize content, to provide social media features and to analyze our traffic. We also share information about your use of our site with our social media, advertising and analytics partners. For information on how to change your cookie settings, please see our Privacy policy. Otherwise, if you agree to our use of cookies, please continue to use our website.

Mark Ballard

Vice President, Research
Mark Ballard

Mark Ballard is the Vice President of Research at Merkle. He has a monthly column at Search Engine Land and manages the popular digital marketing section of the Merkle Blog. He also heads the production of Merkle's quarterly Digital Marketing Reports and Merkle’s biannual Dossier publication. Mark's time at Merkle has included building and managing paid search programs for clients in the retail, finance, B2B and automotive sectors.

Mark's Articles, Blog Posts, Webinars and More

Merkle Q2 2019 Digital Marketing Report Released

The latest edition of the Merkle Digital Marketing Report is now available for download, complete with insights on all of the most important digital trends taking shape in Q2 2019.

Merkle’s Q2 2019 Digital Marketing Report Webinar

Since its launch in 2011, Merkle's quarterly Digital Marketing Report (DMR) has become one of the most highly regarded and frequently cited reports in the digital marketing industry. Providing benchmark data for paid search, SEO, display, social media, and comparison shopping, the DMR has developed a reputation for its accuracy in conveying the larger trends underlying performance for Google, Facebook, Yahoo, and Bing and for breaking major developments with special in-depth analyses.

Blog We suggest...

Merkle|RKG Digital Marketing Report: Q3 2015 Released

We are excited to announce the release of Merkle RKG’s Q3 Digital Marketing Report for download today. As always, the report offers in depth analysis of trends impacting paid search, SEO, comparison shopping engines, display advertising, and other areas spanning the digital marketing spectrum.
Articles We suggest...

As Yahoo Gemini Ramps Up, How Well Is It Performing For Search Advertisers?

Yahoo Gemini was officially announced in February 2014 as the “first unified ad marketplace for both mobile search and native advertising.” A little over a year later, Microsoft and Yahoo amended their existing partnership to allow Yahoo to serve Gemini (or any other) search ads for up to half of Yahoo’s desk
Articles We suggest...

AdWords Brand CPCs Rising? Here's Why And What You Can Do About It

One of the most valuable aspects of paid search benchmark data is its ability to help answer the question, “Is everyone seeing this, or is it just me?” Official data from the search engines themselves is usually sparse and can even be misleading, so it isn’t terribly helpful for this purpose.
Blog We suggest...

Merkle|RKG Digital Marketing Report: Q2 2015 Released

Today we are pleased to announce the release of Merkle|RKG’s Q2 2015 Digital Marketing Report for download. The report offers data and analyses to highlight trends across paid search, search engine optimization, display ads, comparison shopping engines, and other areas of digital marketing.
Articles We suggest...

Is Google Showing Fewer Ads Per Search?

Google’s Q1 2015 earning report showed that paid clicks on Google websites were up 25% year-over-year, while average cost-per-click (CPC) on Google websites was down 13%. Unfortunately, these data points tell us almost nothing about the state of Google paid search.
Articles We suggest...

What Happens if Apple Drops Google From Its Browser?

Mark Ballard, Merkle | RKG's director of research, was quoted on the implications of Apple possibly dropping Google as the default search engine on its Safari browser in a recent article in The New York Times.