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Publishers’ digital revenue up in Q2 2022, reports AOP and Deloitte

AOP and Deloitte say that total digital publishing revenue was £154.8million in Q2 2022, with 50% of respondents reporting positive growth.

Publishers’ digital revenue up in Q2 2022, reports AOP and Deloitte
Richard Reeves: “Looking deeper, the ongoing decline of desktop has implications for publishers, as mobiles are better suited for shorter, ‘snackier’ editorial.”

The latest Digital Publishers’ Revenue Index (DPRI) from the Association of Online Publishers (AOP) and Deloitte reveals total digital revenue for Q2 2022 was £154.8million, up by 12.3% from Q2 2021.

During Q2 2022, recruitment classifieds saw the strongest growth for publishers, increasing by 70.3% compared to Q2 2021. With revenue up to £6.3million, this is likely driven by the surge in the labour market, says the organisations. Display advertising also shows growth of 28.6% – up from £56.3million in Q2 2021 to £72.4million in Q2 2022 – and remains the largest category by revenue for digital publishers. Digital audio continues to trend positively, with a 16.7% revenue increase from Q2 2021, though this has slowed since the phenomenal 500% growth reported in Q1 2022.

Multi-platform and mobile device revenue saw increases of 18.4% and 21.1% respectively in Q2 2022, when compared to Q2 2021, while desktop-only revenue declined by 11%. This reflects the wider trend of advertising campaigns being run across at least two different devices, the organisations added, an indication of the way consumers now consume content across a variety of platforms.

B2B and B2C publishers experienced an uptick in publishing revenues, both on a 12-month rolling basis and as a year-on-year change. B2B revenue increased by 16.3% to £55.7million in June 2022 on a 12-month rolling basis, driven by a significant expansion in display formats, classifieds, and subscriptions. Meanwhile, B2C revenue grew by 12.1% in June 2022 on a 12-month rolling basis, increasing to £571.6million.

Half of respondents (50%) reported positive revenue growth in Q2 2022, with 100% selecting new products as a high priority for their business over the next year, alongside non-advertising revenue growth, which was highlighted as a priority by 83%. However, AOP board members’ confidence in the industry and their companies has slightly declined, no doubt affected by the wider economic climate.

Dan Ison, lead partner for telecommunications, media and entertainment at Deloitte, said: “A red-hot labour market has sparked significant growth within recruitment classified channels over the last year, with employers looking to use publishing to reach the attention of increasingly desirable talent. Meanwhile, the growth of multi-platform and mobile device revenue represents an ever-connected consumer, with nine in ten UK adults having access to a smartphone and more than three-quarters having access to a laptop computer. With many consumers looking to cut back their spend due to rising living costs, publishers must remain agile in responding to changing consumer demands. Generating engaging, multi-platform content that is accessible for every consumer will be key to maintaining consumer interest and revenue growth over the coming months.”

Richard Reeves, managing director at AOP, commented: “It’s encouraging to see continued growth in this challenging economic climate, and the rise in recruitment ad revenue shows how quickly the industry adapts to the needs of the market. Looking deeper, the ongoing decline of desktop has implications for publishers, as mobiles are better suited for shorter, ‘snackier’ editorial. While there is still demand for long-form content, I’d suggest this is being successfully catered to via channels such as newsletters.”

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