Back To Listing

15.5 million Australians read newspapers in print or online

These are the latest findings from the Roy Morgan Single Source survey derived from in-depth face-to-face interviews with 1,000 Australians each week and over 50,000 each year.

Roy Morgan today releases the latest readership results for Australian newspapers for the 12 months to June 2019. Now 15.5 million, or 75%, of Australians aged 14+ read or access newspapers in an average 7 day period via print or online (website or app) platforms, a fall of 3.7 per cent from a year ago.

The standout performer over the past year is the Australian Financial Review (AFR) which increased its total cross-platform readership by a significant 15.8 per cent to 1,587,000 driven by a substantial increase in the AFR’s digital audience – up by 23.5 per cent to 1,337,000.

WA’s only daily metropolitan newspaper the West Australian grew its print and digital readership and increased its cross-platform audience by 3.7 per cent to 1,090,000 and The Saturday  Paper had even stronger growth across print and digital readership and grew its total cross-platform audience by 34 per cent to 280,000.

These are the latest findings from the Roy Morgan Single Source survey derived from in-depth face-to-face interviews with 1,000 Australians each week and over 50,000 each year.

For full details of all mastheads surveyed click here.

Australia’s most widely read masthead is the Nine Entertainment owned Sydney Morning Herald – with a cross-platform audience of 4,125,000, down 3.6 per cent from a year ago. Melbourne stablemate The Age is the second most widely read with a cross-platform audience of 2,782,000.

Their two great local ‘rivals’ fill out the top four with News Corp daily the Herald Sun in third position with a cross-platform audience of 2,729,000 in front of its Sydney counterpart, the Daily Telegraph, which now has a cross-platform audience of 2,625,000 – although both have declined over the last year.

National broadsheet The Australian with a cross-platform audience of 2,421,000 (down 5.6 per cent) fills out the top five and has been one of only a few leading newspapers to increase print readership over the past year.


Top State-wide & National Mastheads by Total 7 Day Cross-Platform Audience (Print & Online)

Publication

Print

Digital
(web or app)

Total Cross-Platform Audience*
(print, web or app)

June
2018

June
2019

June
2018

June
2019

June
2018

June
2019

% Change

‘000s

‘000s

‘000s

‘000s

‘000s

‘000s

%

Sydney Morning Herald (SMH)

1,036

871

3,787

3,745

4,279

4,125

-3.6%

The Age

881

738

2,634

2,503

3,085

2,782

-9.8%

Herald Sun

1,465

1,155

2,082

1,919

3,085

2,729

-11.5%

Daily Telegraph

1,306

1,143

2,330

1,773

3,245

2,625

-19.1%

The Australian

831

851

1,965

1,824

2,564

2,421

-5.6%

Courier-Mail

911

874

1,267

1,077

1,961

1,748

-10.9%

Australian Financial Review (AFR)

374

370

1,083

1,337

1,370

1,587

15.8%

West Australian

659

667

536

594

1,051

1,090

3.7%



*Total cross-platform audience comprises print which is net readership in an average 7 days and digital which is net website visitation and app usage in an average 7 days.
Total Cross-Platform Audience results available to view here.


Print Newspapers now read by over three-in-ten Australians (6.5 million)

Overall 6.5 million Australians read the listed print newspapers, including almost 4.6 million who read weekday issues, over 3.8 million who read Saturday editions and more than 3.3 million who read Sunday titles. Although print readership has declined year-on-year, the latest figures show over 30% per cent of Australians are reading print newspapers. In today’s digitally-focused world print newspapers continue to be an important advertising medium to reach both mass and niche audiences.

Weekend Newspaper Readership down, but The Weekend Australian increases

Although overall weekend print readership is down from a year ago the best performer is The Weekend Australian which bucked the trend and increased average issue readership by 3 per cent to 593,000.

Australia’s best read weekend newspaper is again Sydney’s Sunday Telegraph with an average issue print readership of 714,000 – down 17.4 per cent over the past year – ahead of southern stablemate Melbourne’s Sunday Herald Sun which has a print readership of 611,000 (down 24.9 per cent).

Other major titles to decline included the Saturday Herald Sun down 20 per cent to a readership of 587,000, The Sunday Mail in Queensland down 9.5 per cent to 559,000 readers, the Saturday Sydney Morning Herald down 20.5 per cent to a readership 503,000 and Melbourne’s Saturday Age down 18.8 per cent to 468,000 readers.

Additional newspapers to defy the broader industry trends were the Saturday Adelaide Advertiser increasing its readership by 0.3 per cent to 317,000 and Schwartz Media’s The Saturday Paper up by 5.8 per cent to 128,000.

Top Weekend Newspapers – Ranked by Print Readership*

Publication

June 2018

June 2019

% Change

‘000s

‘000s

%

Sunday Telegraph

864

714

-17.4%

Sunday Herald Sun

814

611

-24.9%

The Weekend Australian

576

593

3.0%

Saturday Herald Sun

734

587

-20.0%

The Sunday Mail (Qld)

618

559

-9.5%

Saturday SMH

633

503

-20.5%

Saturday Age

576

468

-18.8%


*Print readership is average issue readership.

Full Newspaper Readership Results available to view here.

Newspaper Inserted Magazines: Readership of Wish, The Deal and Boss increases

Three newspaper inserted magazines have managed to increase their readership over the last year despite broader industry trends the AFR’s Boss Magazine increased its readership by 4.6 per cent to 160,000.

Also increasing their readership alongside parent paper The Australian were Wish magazine for which readership increased 2.3 per cent to 135,000 and The Deal now with 79,000 readers, up 9.1 per cent.

However, despite a 19.6 per cent decrease Good Weekend clearly remains Australia's most widely read newspaper inserted magazine with print readership of 916,000. Real estate focused magazine Domain is the second most widely read newspaper inserted magazine in Australia with an impressive readership of 708,000 in the year to June 2019.

The Weekend Australian magazine is now the equal third most widely read newspaper inserted magazine with a readership of 567,000, down 8.8 per cent on a year ago, alongside Stellar magazine also read by 567,000, down a significant 26.7 per cent on a year ago. Sunday Life is the fifth most widely read newspaper inserted magazine with a readership of 536,000, down 23.5 per cent.

Top Newspaper Inserted Magazines – Ranked by Print Readership*

Publication

June 2018

June 2019

% Change

‘000s

‘000s

%

Good Weekend (NSW/Vic)

1,139

916

-19.6%

Domain (NSW/Vic)

n/a

708

n/a

Weekend Australian Magazine

622

567

-8.8%

Stellar (NSW/Vic)

774

567

-26.7%

Sunday Life (NSW/Vic)

701

536

-23.5%

Sunday Telegraph TV Guide (NSW)

554

462

-16.6%

Financial Review Magazine

406

386

-4.9%



*Print readership is average issue readership.

Full Newspaper Inserted Magazine Readership Results available to view here.


Gold Coast Bulletin, Hobart Mercury & Townsville Bulletin increase readership

North Queensland’s Monday-Friday Townsville Bulletin had the most impressive readership growth over the past year of all regional titles with an increase in readership of 13.9 per cent to 41,000.

In addition the Gold Coast Bulletin increased weekday readership by 7.8 per cent to 55,000 in the year to June 2019 to become Australia’s second most widely read regional weekday masthead.

Another bright spot for regional titles was the The Hobart Mercury which increased its weekday readership by 6.4 per cent to 50,000 in the year to June 2019.

Despite a decline in readership over the past year the Newcastle Herald remains Australia’s most widely read weekday regional title with a print readership of 56,000 (down 12.5 per cent).

Top Regional Newspapers – Ranked by Print Readership (Monday – Friday)*

Publication

June 2018

June 2019

% Change

‘000s

‘000s

%

Newcastle Herald

64

56

-12.5%

Gold Coast Bulletin

51

55

7.8%

The Hobart Mercury

47

50

6.4%

Townsville Bulletin

36

41

13.9%

Canberra Times

47

39

-17.0%

Geelong Advertiser

40

36

-10.0%


*Print readership is average issue readership.

Full Newspaper Readership Results available to view here.

The total cross-platform audiences of Australia’s leading regional titles has declined over the last year. However, despite a decline in its digital audience the Canberra Times remains Australia’s most widely read regional masthead with a total cross-platform audience of 359,000 ahead of the Newcastle Herald with an audience of 225,000 and The Hobart Mercury with an audience of 193,000.

Total Cross-Platform Audience for available regional titles

Publication

Print

Digital
(web or app)

Total Cross-Platform Audience
(print, web or app)

June
2018

June
2019

June
2018

June
2019

June
2018

June
2019

% Change

‘000s

‘000s

‘000s

‘000s

‘000s

‘000s

%

Canberra Times

99

78

401

309

468

359

-23.3%

Newcastle Herald

135

119

136

121

245

225

-8.2%

The Hobart Mercury

105

102

116

116

203

193

-4.9%


*Total cross-platform audience comprises print which is net readership in an average 7 days and digital which is net website visitation and app usage in an average 7 days.

Michele Levine, CEO, Roy Morgan, says:

“Over 15.5 million Australians 14+ read newspapers in an average 7 day period either in print, or online via website or app. This represents a decline of 3.7 per cent from a year ago but still means three-quarters of all Australians aged 14+ consume newspaper content led by Australia’s most widely read mastheads.

“Nine Entertainment Company’s Sydney Morning Herald remains easily Australia’s most widely read masthead and is read by over 4.1 million Australians in print or online while southern stablemate The Age is read by nearly 2.8 million.

“However the star performer over the past year is the business focused national daily the Australian Financial Review which grew its cross-platform audience by over 15 per cent to nearly 1.6 million. The increasing audience engaged with the AFR indicates that consumers are increasingly valuing the specialised content available from market leaders.

“Rival newspaper publisher News Corp has four of Australia’s top six most widely read newspapers led by the Herald Sun (2.7 million), Daily Telegraph (2.6 million) and national broadsheet The Australian read by a cross-platform audience of over 2.4 million.

“Outside the big two publishing empires there have been strong performances put in by the West Australian which boosted its cross-platform audience by 3.7 per cent to nearly 1.1 million and Schwarz Media’s The Saturday Paper which grew its cross-platform audience by an impressive 34 per cent to 280,000.”

For comments or more information please contact:
Roy Morgan - Enquiries
Office: +61 (03) 9224 5309
askroymorgan@roymorgan.com


About Roy Morgan

Roy Morgan is the largest independent Australian research company, with offices throughout Australia, as well as in Indonesia, the United States and the United Kingdom. A full service research organisation specialising in omnibus and syndicated data, Roy Morgan has over 70 years’ experience in collecting objective, independent information on consumers.

Margin of Error

The margin of error to be allowed for in any estimate depends mainly on the number of interviews on which it is based. Margin of error gives indications of the likely range within which estimates would be 95% likely to fall, expressed as the number of percentage points above or below the actual estimate. Allowance for design effects (such as stratification and weighting) should be made as appropriate.

Sample Size

Percentage Estimate

40%-60%

25% or 75%

10% or 90%

5% or 95%

1,000

±3.0

±2.7

±1.9

±1.3

5,000

±1.4

±1.2

±0.8

±0.6

7,500

±1.1

±1.0

±0.7

±0.5

10,000

±1.0

±0.9

±0.6

±0.4

20,000

±0.7

±0.6

±0.4

±0.3

50,000

±0.4

±0.4

±0.3

±0.2