Digital editions of magazines are having a negligible impact on the market in terms of sales, if new figures released today by ABC are anything to by.
Of those publishers which report digital edition sales – only Hello and Men’s Health manage to sell more than 1,000 copies.
Typically digital editions appear to account for less than one per cent of total sales.
Digital editions are generally facsmiles of the print edition optimised for desktop computers, laptops, iPads and other devices.
Total digital edition sales of UK magazines in the first half of 2011 (source ABC)
Magazine title; publisher: total digital edition sales
- Men’s Health ; Natmag Rodale : 1,746
- HELLO! ; Hello! Ltd : 1,165
- Stuff ; Haymarket Consumer Media : 981
- Esquire ; Hearst Magazines UK : 825
- Harpers Bazaar ; Hearst Magazines UK : 622
- Wired ; Conde Nast Publications Ltd : 622
- GQ ; Conde Nast Publications Ltd : 574
- Tatler ; Conde Nast Publications Ltd : 359
- House & Garden ; Conde Nast Publications Ltd : 351
- New Scientist – US/Canadian Sales ; Reed Business Information Limited : 349
- Autocar ; Haymarket Consumer Media : 348
- Cosmopolitan ; Hearst Magazines UK : 259
- Vogue ; Conde Nast Publications Ltd : 185
- Four Four Two ; Haymarket Consumer Media : 178
- World Of Interiors ; Conde Nast Publications Ltd : 168
- Conde Nast Traveller ; Conde Nast Publications Ltd : 102
Men’s Health remained the top-selling men’s magazine in the UK in the first half of 2011, despite losing 11.1 per cent of its circulation year on year.
The previously robust NatMag performer fell to 218,368 sales a month while next-placed FHM fell even faster, by 19.2 per cent to 155,557.
The men’s weeklies continued to have the toughest time, with Nuts falling 22.5 per cent year on year to 114,019 and Zoo falling 32.1 per cent to 54,318.
In terms of overall circulation, free weekly titles Shortlist and Sport continue to top the table.
Men’s magazine circulations for the first half of 2011 (source ABC)
Title; publisher; average sale; percentage change year on year
- Shortlist (free) ; Shortlist Media Ltd : 523,665 , 1.1%
- Sport (free) ; UTV Media Ltd : 306,217 , 0.2%
- Men’s Health ; Natmag Rodale : 218,368 , -11.1%
- FHM ; Bauer Consumer Media : 155,557 , -19.2%
- GQ ; Conde Nast Publications Ltd : 118,216 , -1.5%
- Nuts ; IPC Media Ltd : 114,019 , -22.5%
- RWD (free) ; RWD Creative Media Limited : 98,300 , 38.5%
- Stuff ; Haymarket Consumer Media : 80,130 , -6.1%
- Men’s Fitness ; Dennis Publishing Limited : 69,264 , 1.7%
- BBC Focus ; BBC Worldwide : 66,454 , -9.7%
- Healthy for Men ; River Publishing Ltd : 60,499 , 7.4%
- Esquire ; Hearst Magazines UK : 58,218 , 0.1%
- Zoo ; Bauer Consumer Media : 54,318 , -32.1%
- Wired ; Conde Nast Publications Ltd : 50,150 , 0.3%
- Irish Tatler Man ; Harmonia Limited : 7,557 , N/A
Private Eye magazine remained the UK’s top-selling current affairs title in the first half of 2011.
The fornightly satirical magazine, which celebrates its 50th birthday later this year, had a total circulation of 206,266 in the first half, a slight drop of 0.7 per cent year on year.
Although The Economist’s UK edition had a higher total circulation, at 210,318 copies a week – only 76.5 per cent of its circulation was paid-for, compared with 98.9 per cent for Private Eye.
Global circulation of The Economist is said to be up 3 per cent to 1,486,838.
UK publisher Yvonne Ossman said: “In these troubled times, more and more people are seeing the value in The Economists insightful and compelling editorial content, which offers much-needed perspective on world events.”
Private Eye contributor and former editor Richard Ingrams had more reason to celebrate. The monthly title which he now edits, The Oldie, was the fastest growing UK current affairs magazine in the first half of this year with sales up 7.9 per cent to 40,386.
UK current affairs magazines ranked by average sale (first half 2011, source ABC)
Title; publisher; average sale; percentage change year on year
- The Economist – United Kingdom Edition ; The Economist Newspaper Ltd : 210,318 ; 7.7%
- Private Eye ; Pressdram Ltd : 206,266 ; -0.7%
- The Week ; Dennis Publishing Limited : 183,617 ; 3.9% ; 160,408 ; -6.6%
- The Economist – Asia Pacific Edition ; The Economist Newspaper Ltd : 146,016 ; 4.3%
- New Scientist (excluding Australasia & US/Canada ; Reed Business Information : 92,708 ; -8.3%
- Monocle ; Winkontent Ltd : 66,120 ; N/A
- Spectator ; Spectator (1828) Ltd : 62,852 ; -10.7%
- MoneyWeek ; Moneyweek Ltd : 47,366 ; 6.0%
- The Oldie ; Oldie Publications Ltd : 40,386 ; 7.9%
- Prospect ; Prospect Publishing Ltd : 31,985 ; 4.9%
- Investors Chronicle ; FT Business : 28,479 ; -2.4%
Heat magazine has shed more than a fifth of its sales in a year, the biggest faller in the women’s weeklies sector with OK!, Hello! and Woman’s Weekly the only titles to boost circulation.
Bauer Media’s Heat had an average circulation of 326,677 in the first half of 2011, down 21.7% year on year and 11.7% down on the previous six months, according to the latest Audit Bureau of Circulations figures published on Thursday.
It was the biggest decline in the sector, which saw double-digit year-on-year circulation falls for four titles including IPC Media’s Pick Me Up, down 18.1% – and 8.9% on the previous six months – to 261,588.
It was a mixed picture for Richard Desmond’s Northern & Shell with OK! magazine overtaking Bauer’s Closer to become the third biggest title in the sector.
OK! saw sales grow 4.9% period-on-period to 473,167, but was down year on year by 1.2%. Closer slipped back 12.7% year-on-year and 7.8% on the previous six months to 459,693.
Northern & Shell’s New! held on to second place in the market despite suffering a decline of 10.7% year on year and 8.2% on the previous six months to 515,975.
Its Northern & Shell stablemate Star fell 8% year on year and 5.7% period on period to 405,688.
The circulations of both titles have been heavily supported by multi-packing, where they are bundled together with a sister title and sold at a cheaper rate.
New! had a full-rate sale in the UK and Ireland of 294,819, 57% of total circulation. Star’s full-rate sale in the UK and Ireland was 162,914, just 40% of total circulation.
Hello!, along with OK! the only bright spot in the sector, climbed past Star with a 0.3% increase year on year and a 1.9% increase period on period to 413,311.
H Bauer’s Take A Break once again took the number one spot in the women’s weeklies sector. Take A Break’s average sale of 803,555 was down 6.1% year on year and 3.6% period on period.
IPC’s Chat was down 9% year on year and 5.6% period on period to 391,749. Its IPC stablemate Women’s Weekly grew year-on-year sales by 0.4% to 339,993, a period-on-period decline of 1.2%.
The top 10 was rounded out by H Bauer’s That’s Life which shed 5.9% circulation year on year to 321,332, a 4.3% period-on-period fall.
IPC’s Woman’s Own suffered the largest period-on-period circulation decline of any title, down 15.7% to 245,868. This represented a 9.7% decline year on year.
Hubert Burda’s Love It! fell 12.4% period on period and 8.4% year on year to 212,168.
The UK edition of the National Enquirer reported a year-on-year fall of 8.3% to 65,684, a 5.6% drop period on period.