May 08, 2014

Readers more loyal to large digital news sites. Implications?

This piece from Poynter caught my eye -- Report: readers more loyal to large news sites.

The latest report by analytics firm indicates large news sites see a greater percentage of visitors return within 30 days than small news sites do.

That finding runs counter to the company’s internal hypothesis that niche sites would have higher return rates, the company said in an email.
(Note, this is one of those reports that to get you have to give out an email to get on a mailing list, so it's good to have a garbage email account handy.)

Although this is talking about mostly pure digital sites, it makes me wonder if there are implications for smaller community publishers as well. I've been pondering the potential squeeze on local media - it doesn't scale in an era when there is a race to the bottom in online ad rates and so scale is almost mandatory, and then when people get online I've often suspected just from observation that they gravitate to the larger national and international sites.

This makes for some very interesting thinking on the business model for local media, especially that midrange of small dailies, as mobile makes its relentless penetration.

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