The Newspapers: Rating The Top 25 Newspaper Websites
The struggle for large daily metropolitan newspapers to stay profitable and survive is based on the race between the drop in their print advertising and the improvement of their online sales. Newspaper industry costs are rising along with fuel and commodities prices. Most large dailies have resorted to lay-offs. Even The New York Times and Washington Post are cutting staff, including reporters and editors.
Revenue is falling sharply based on a review of the numbers from publicly traded newspaper companies. The sole exception may be The New York Times Company, where online revenue is now well over 10% of the total. In April, NYT online ad revenue rose almost 26%. The company claims its collection of web properties had the 11th largest number of online visitors in America, with over 49 million unique visitors in April. Gannett’s sites rank in 36th place with 23 million unique visitors, but most newspaper companies are not as lucky. Even The Washington Post was only able to generate $27 million in online revenue in the first quarter. This was a very modest increase of 8% over the same period the year before. This revenue compares to $206 million in total sales for the newspaper division during this period. That spells trouble, no matter how Wall St. looks at it.
Because online versions of major newspapers are certainly the key to future revenue growth and profits, 24/7 Wall St. looked at the websites of the top 25 newspapers in the US based on their circulations as of March 31, 2008 taken from the Audit Bureau of Circulations.
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