Online preferred to print for access, speed and convenience

Newspaper and magazine websites are easier to access, faster for locating desired content, and are more convenient than their print equivalent, according to recent AOP research.

AOP’s Dual Consumption Survey, looking at usage and attitudes across AOP member websites and their offline equivalents, found that 60 per cent of newspaper readers consider online easier to access than print. For magazine readers, the preference was less marked, though 48 per cent of respondents still favoured the publications’ websites for ease of access.

A dominant theme of the research was that audiences trust the content brand over and above the medium by which it is delivered. Three-fifths of respondents did not want to choose between the two, with the website and print equivalent fulfilling different and distinct consumption needs.

The AOP Dual Consumption Survey was conducted across 37 AOP member sites, collected responses from a total of 26,926 respondents (16yrs+, UK only) and concluded that 72 per cent of newspaper respondents and 66 per cent of magazine respondents consider the website and its offline equivalent to be equally reliable. Both newspaper (81 per cent) and magazine (74 per cent) respondents considered both platforms to be equally trustworthy.

Looking specifically at the role of websites, the results confirmed that consumers can find content faster on the web and consider online a more convenient platform than print. Sixty per cent of both newspaper and magazine respondents agreed that the website enabled them to find things faster than using the offline equivalent. Convenience scores for newspaper websites were particularly striking, with over half (55 per cent) of newspaper respondents preferring online.

However, there is still work to be done online in terms of user satisfaction – an area in which print titles appear to have the edge. Half of magazine respondents rated the print version as more satisfying than the website.


About AOP
The UK Association of Online Publishers (AOP) is an industry body representing online publishing companies that create original, branded, quality content. AOP champions the interests of approximately 160 publishing companies from diverse backgrounds including newspaper and magazine publishing, TV and radio broadcasting, and pure online media. Together they publish around 1,150 products and attract more than five billion page impressions per month.

AOP presents a unified voice to industry and Government, specifically to address issues and concerns relating to all areas of online publishing. AOP publishes original research, hosts forums, conferences and events, covering a range of topics from paid-for-content, subscription models and data protection, through to copyright, content management, new technologies and audience measurement.

The AOP autumn Online Publishing Conference & Awards is its annual industry event. It attracts the biggest names in online publishing to discuss the challenges and opportunities facing the industry and celebrate outstanding achievement. The 2007 event will be held on 3 October at the London Hilton, Park Lane.

Members include AN Digital, BBC, BSkyB, Channel 4, CMPi, CNET Networks, Condé Nast Interactive, Dennis Interactive, The Economist Group, Emap,, Future Publishing, GCAP Media, Guardian Unlimited, Haymarket Publishing, Hearst Digital Network, Incisive Media, Independent Digital, IPC Media, ITV Online, News International, Reed Business Information, Reuters Group, Telegraph Group Limited, Trinity Mirror Group and Which?. In addition, PPAi (Periodical Publishers Association Interactive) retains a corporate seat on AOP board: representing the interests of magazine publishers online.


Ron Nussey, communications and marketing executive | 020 7400 7532

Published on: 12:00AM on 7th August 2007