World Press Trends 2015 Facts and Figures: Global newspaper industry revenues

Circulation vs. advertising revenue

Read on

A profound shift in the newspaper business model, evolving for years, is finally here: global newspaper circulation revenues have surpassed newspaper advertising revenues, meaning that audiences have become publishers’ biggest source of revenue. In 2014, newspapers generated an estimated 179 billion dollars in circulation and advertising revenue. 92 billion came from print and digital circulation, while 87 billion came from advertising. Read on

In most newspaper markets print advertising’s share of overall revenue is declining, and this decline is forecast to continue. On the other hand, the positive aspect of this trend is that audiences worldwide continue to read and value news products, and most national news industries are finding ways to monetise this continued interest and commitment from audiences.

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Print vs. digital revenue

While digital advertising represents a small part of overall newspaper revenue, it continues to grow significantly (8 per cent in 2014 and 59 per cent over five years). Also revenue from digital circulation is growing steadily, amounting now to over 20 per cent of newspapers’ overall digital revenues. In 2014, paid digital circulation revenues increased 45 per cent.

Although newspapers’ digital revenues continue to grow, print is still their main source of revenue: globally, over 93 per cent of all newspaper revenue comes from print, and print will continue to be a major source of revenue for many years to come.

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Global circulation and reach

While print circulations continue to decline in the west, global print circulation is growing steadily: print circulation increased over 6 per cent globally in 2014 from a year earlier and more than 16 per cent over five years. The increase is largely the result of circulation growth in India and elsewhere in Asia.

WAN-IFRA estimates that print newspapers reach around 2.7 billion people around the world. Furthermore, newspapers have a desktop digital audience of 0.8 billion people.

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Circulation: regional trends

Globally, the trends within the news media industry are far from homogenous: while Asia, Africa, including the MENA region, and Latin America continue to enjoy growth in print audiences, mature newspaper markets are seeing continued declines in print circulation.

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Top 10 paid-for dailies

1 The Yomiuri Shimbun Japan Japanese 9190
2 The Asahi Shimbun Japan Japanese 6809
3 USA Today USA English 4139
4 Dainik Bhaskar India Hindi 3557
5 The Mainichi Newspapers Japan Japanese 3360
6 Cankao Xiaoxi China Chinese 3073
7 Dainik Jagran India Hindi 3034
8 The Times of India India English 2891
9 The Nikkei Japan Japanese 2732
10 People’s Daily China Chinese 2603

Digital Media Consumption

Paid digital circulation

Although digital circulation still represents a small part of newspapers’ overall revenues, there is increasing evidence that audiences are more and more willing to pay for quality journalism also online.

Paid digital circulation revenues are increasing at a rapid rate: by 56 per cent in 2014, or more than 1,420 per cent over the last five years.

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Hooked on mobile

News audiences are increasingly turning to mobile platforms, and for the first time, this is starting to replace desktop traffic: web usage data from comScore indicates that desktop audience numbers are falling as consumers spend more time with their smartphones.

According to comScore, the leading media properties now see 30 per cent or more of their online audiences coming exclusively from mobile platforms. Consequently, mobile advertising is rapidly growing and is expected to reach 52 billion dollars in revenue in 2017. There is a myriad of changes occurring as a result of increased smartphone usage and mobile internet growth. The shift to mobile is extremely important because it changes the way news is packaged, distributed, discovered and consumed.

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