Fairfax print plunges in August, digital powers

Fairfax's trend of plummeting print sales contrasting with strong digital numbers continued in August, with the Sun Herald posting a 23% circulation drop.

According to the Fairfax Metro Media Audience Report for August, Fairfax's Sunday paper for the Sydney market saw the largest decline last month, while the Sydney Morning Herald, The Age and The Saturday Age all saw drops in the double digits.

Fairfax has been publicly shifting its focus towards its digital strategy, which is clearly displayed in August's numbers.

While print sales and readership declined across the board, Fairfax's metro titles saw strong jumps in digital figures.

Last month, smh.com.au boasted a unique audience of 2.9 million in August, while theage.com.au pulled in two million.

Video streams, which have seen declines in previous months, jumped 7% for smh.com.au and 16% for theage.com.au.

Fairfax Metro Media chief executive Jack Matthews said: “We continue to lead the market in data transparency and are pleased that this demonstrates that our multi-platform audience strategy is working.

“We’re growing our audiences rapidly as we cater for every way our customers want to engage with our publications.

“The growth in our mobile results continues to be fantastic and we clearly lead the market in the mobile news space.”

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