Mobile devices accounted for 15.1% of the UK’s paid search clicks in December, according to Marin Software.

This is a 180% growth from January to December 2011, and means that globally the UK is second only to Japan and Australia in percentage of paid search clicks from mobile.

Looking at 2011 overall, the Eurozone showed strong growth with share of mobile paid search clicks growing 177% from 2.1% in January 2011 to 5.8% in December 2011.

Marin’s report, ‘The State of European Mobile Search Advertising 2012’, includes data from 50bn impressions and 1bn clicks delivered for more than 1,300 global customers.

It shows that advertisers are increasing mobile search budgets to reflect growing smartphone and tablet usage – mobile search budgets increased by 191% from 3.2% to 9.3% in 2011.

Analysis of click-through rates found that consumers are more likely to engage with paid search adverts on smartphones and tablets as opposed to desktop computers. 

Paid search click-through rates on smartphones are 54% higher than they are on desktops, while click-through rates on tablets are 68% higher.

The report also highlights that conversion rates on tablets are comparable to desktop computers at 4% against 4.7%, with cost per conversion 14% lower on tablets than desktops.

However these conversion rate stats are high compared to data from Affiliate Window’s M-commerce white paper which found that the average conversion rate for iPad was 3.82% in August, compared to 1.9% for desktop.

Marin Software managing director global agencies and international Ed Stevenson said that much like the desktop market search represents the largest destination for mobile ad budgets.  

“The combination of explosive user adoption of mobile devices, coupled with favourable performance characteristics for ads, makes mobile search an increasingly critical growth opportunity for both advertisers and Google.”

Marin’s data tallies with a similar report from Latitude Digital Marketing which found that mobile and tablet are now responsible for 13.4% of all paid search clicks.

Latitude’s Mobile Review also found that 11.9% of all website visits now come from mobile devices.