Newspaper readers prefer online access

A majority of newspaper readers prefer the convenience of online and say that content is much easier to access than print, according to a report by the Association of Online Publishers.

AOP's Dual Consumption Survey, which looked at usage and attitudes across AOP member websites and their paper equivalents, found that 60% of newspaper readers found online faster for locating desired content and is more convenient than the print equivalent.

The preference was less marked for magazine readers, with 48% of respondents favouring the publications' websites for ease of access.

The 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.

As many as 81% of newspaper respondents and 74% of magazine respondents considered the print and online platforms to be equally trustworthy, although the survey also showed 55% of newspaper respondents preferred the online version for convenience.

An area where print titles did have an edge over online was with user satisfaction. Half of magazine respondents rated the print version as more satisfying than the website.

The survey was conducted with 26,926 people, across 37 AOP member sites. Members include the BBC, BSkyB, The Economist Group, Emap, and GCap Media.

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