Digital marketing is now mainstream and digital commerce is a top priority for marketers, according to a survey of marketing executives conducted by Gartner Inc.

The survey of 339 companies in North America and the U.K. conducted between May and July 2015 also found that marketing budgets rose 10% in 2015, with 61% of respondents saying they expect budgets to increase again next year.

"There is little doubt that digital marketing is now mainstream," Yvonne Genovese, group vice president at Gartner, said in a statement. "Marketers no longer make a clear distinction between offline and online marketing disciplines. As customers opt for digitally led experiences, digital marketing stops being a discrete discipline and instead becomes the context for all marketing. Digital marketing is now marketing in a digital world."

A small number of marketers (10%) say they have moved beyond digital marketing techniques and are expanding marketing's role to create new digitally led business models.

The blurring of the physical and digital worlds presents opportunities for marketers to apply customer insights to create and test new digitally led experiences and business models. Digital commerce is surging, the report says, capturing 11% of the digital marketing budget, as marketers become more accountable for driving results.

"The rise in digital commerce is an opportunity for marketers," Jake Sorofman, research vice president at Gartner, said in a statement. "There was a time when marketing and selling were two distinct disciplines. In many cases, digital merges these two into a single, continuous activity from initial awareness, through engagement, conversion, transaction and repeat purchase.”

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