Summary:

Perhaps the most comprehensive study on online content market and revenues over the last five quarters. Done by Online Publishers Associatio…

Perhaps the most comprehensive study on online content market and revenues over the last five quarters. Done by Online Publishers Association and comScore Networks.

Topline findings: U.S. consumers spent $675 million for online content last year, a 92 percent increase over 2000 spending levels. Of course, that total spend is only 9.37 percent of the total online ad spend last year, estimated to be about $7.2 billion by the Interactive Advertising Bureau. However, the industry growth seems to be accelerating, as consumer spent rose 155 percent for the first quarter this year to $300 million, compared to the year-ago quarter.

Among the sector wise spend, the business-related content is the top-spending category ($214.3 million), followed by entertainment content ($112 million) and online personals ($72 million). All three account for about 59 percent of total content spending online. General news is the fifth biggest category with about $51.8 million in online consumer spend. The online greeting cards category had a strong $6.8 million consumer spend in 2001, buoyed by the fact that AmericanGreetings.com and BlueMountain.com introduced a subscription model fourth quarter last year.

Monthly or annual subscriptions are the dominant pricing model for online content sites, accounting for 85 percent of sales last year. Single purchases accounted for only 15 percent of sales, less that 2 percent (less than $2 million) of which was made up of micropayments of under $5 value.

For more on the study, you can dowload the whole report as a PDF file from the OPA website.

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