NAA: Q3 Was Worst Quarter For Online Newspaper Ad Revenues; Print Ad Spend Starting To Thaw?


Credit: Flickr/Alex Barth

Newspaper websites’ ad revenue got progressively worse in Q3, as the declines reached nearly 17 percent to $623 million, according to the latest Newspaper Association of America stats. In comparison, newspaper sites’ Q308 decline was only 3 percent; sequentially, Q2 newspaper online numbers fell 15.9 percent. Despite the deep revenue woes newspapers find themselves in on the print side, the combined print and online category actually saw some improvement sequentially, but it’s still nothing to cheer about.

Total print and online plunged about 28 percent to $6.4 billion, considerably worse than Q308’s 18 percent decline. As for the rest of this year, the combined category was down 28.3 percent in Q1 and then fell 29 percent in Q2. Given those declines, it’s hard to call Q3 an improvement, but it could suggest that some print declines are slowing, as those numbers mirrored the sole print category’s decreases in the previous two quarters. A number of newspaper companies have said that there have been signs of a mild thaw, but no one expects a turnaround in ad revs before the middle of next year.

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