Newspaper Web Sites Reach 62% of Online Population

Newspapers are not dying -- at least online. An average of 105.3 million people per month visited a newspaper Web site during the fourth quarter of 2010, according to comScore data cited by the Newspaper Association of America: 105.3 million in October, 106.7 million in November and 103.9 million in December.

These visitors spent an average of 3.4 billion minutes per month browsing newspaper Web sites, generating an average 4.1 billion page views per month. That works out to about 32.3 minutes and 38.9 page views per individual per month.

What's more, the newspaper Web site audience includes a high proportion of desirable demographic segments, according to comScore and the NAA. The sites reach 58% of 25- to-35-year-old adults and 73% of individuals living in households earning over $100,000 per year.

The NAA noted that online advertising revenues from newspaper Web sites are also growing, including an 11% increase between the third quarter of 2009 and the third quarter of 2010, to $690 million. (Fourth-quarter figures are still being tallied). Despite the growth, newspapers' huge online audience -- perhaps the largest of any traditional media -- has failed to generate sufficient revenues to offset print declines.



Between 2005 and 2009, newspapers' total print ad revenues dropped 47.7% from $47.4 billion to $24.8 billion -- while their online revenues edged up from $2.02 billion to $2.73 billion over the same period. (That includes two years of consecutive declines in 2008 and 2009.)

Through the third-quarter 2010, total online revenues are up 9.5% to $2.16 billion, a gain of about $200 million. But over the same period, total print ad revenues fell 8.7% to $16.35 billion -- shedding about $1.55 billion.

4 comments about "Newspaper Web Sites Reach 62% of Online Population".
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  1. Douglas Ferguson from College of Charleston, January 26, 2011 at 9:35 a.m.

    Yes, we are being reached, for what that's worth. But we are not using the classified ads anymore, thanks to Craigslist, which effectively killed 40 percent of newspaper revenues. And thanks to adblockers, we are skipping the ads on newspaper websites, or using's Readability program to cancel out all the clutter. Reach is not the same as revenue.

  2. Paula Lynn from Who Else Unlimited, January 26, 2011 at 11:24 a.m.

    True, Doug. Plus, 30 minutes per month is a about a minute a day. Really good, huh? 30 minutes per day should be more like it.

  3. Kim Bradley, January 28, 2011 at 5:16 p.m.

    Not only are we not even glancing at the classifieds or the print ads, we are actually only clicking through from a headline that caught our attention that we saw on some other site (probably our yahoo, MSN or google homepage) and if we are staying for longer than the seconds it takes to read the article it is to post a comment (usually rude, anonymous and irrelevant).

    For the newspaper to put out those statistics is ridiculous and misleading, but what else can they do...for they are indeed dead.

    As Douglas said, Page Views are not "Reach" and "Reach" is not revenue.

  4. Don Scott from BH Media Group, Inc., February 7, 2011 at 8:07 a.m.

    Based on the first three comments it would seem newspapers should fold their tents and go home. I think not!

    Consider the upheavals created by any new media technology. They are significant yet the older technologies continue to serve audiences in a significant manner. The news industry needs to adapt, but it's not going away.

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