Australian Newspaper Readership, 12 months to March 2020

The readership estimates below are ‘average issue readership’ (AIR) over a 12 month period, and represent the number, or %, of Australians who read or look into an average issue of the particular publication.

This provides an estimate of the ‘reach’ an advertiser can expect to achieve with advertising placed in the publication.

These print readership estimates do not include the additional Australians who read the publications in their digital form online, via web, mobile or app.

The total reach – ‘cross-platform’ reach is greater than the ‘average issue reach’ of a publication as it includes additional readers and cover a 4 week period, rather than an average issue.


  M-F M-F Sat Sat Sun Sun

March 2019 March 2020 March 2019 March 2020 March 2019 March 2020
Newspapers R'ship ('000s) R'ship ('000s) R'ship ('000s) R'ship ('000s) R'ship ('000s) R'ship ('000s)
National            
The Australian 295 289 594 524 - -
Aust. Financial Review 182 178 117 101 - -
The Saturday Paper - - 131 119 - -
NSW            
Daily Telegraph 544 392 495 348 - -
Sydney Morning Herald 372 373 541 461 - -
Sunday Telegraph - - - - 780 587
The Sun-Herald - - - - 468 378
Newcastle Herald 56 48 72 55 - -
Illawarra Mercury 32 28 32 28 - -
Canberra Times 41 41 56 45 31 30
VIC            
Herald Sun 655 578 634 541 - -
The Age 394 388 503 428 - -
Sunday Herald Sun - - - - 682 562
The Sunday Age - - - - 395 372
Geelong Advertiser 40 34 44 34 - -
QLD            
Courier-Mail 333 233 391 314 - -
The Sunday Mail - - - - 583 475
Cairns Post 38 30 51 34 - -
Gold Coast Bulletin 52 43 57 39 - -
Townsville Bulletin 43 38 47 31 - -
SA            
Adelaide Advertiser  257 219 327 280 - -
Sunday Mail - - - - 360 320
WA            
West Australian 350 292 - - - -
Weekend West - - 437 387 - -
Sunday Times - - - - 340 284
Tasmania            
The Mercury 52 48 60 54 - -
The Examiner 28 32 33 27 - -
The Advocate 25 19 24 17 - -
Sunday Tasmanian (Tas) - - - - 58 47
Sunday Examiner - - - - 26 20
Northern Territory            
Northern Territory News 26 16 24 19 - -
Sunday Territorian  - - - - 25 16


Print Newspaper Summary - March 2020


Print Newspapers read by around 5.8 million Australians (28%) in early 2020

More than 5.8 million Australians read the listed print newspapers, including around 4.1 million who read weekday issues, almost 3.4 million who read Saturday editions and almost 3 million who read Sunday titles. Although print readership has declined year-on-year, these figures show almost 3-in-10 Australians read 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 from a year ago pre COVID-19 pandemic

Australia’s best read weekend newspaper is again Sydney’s Sunday Telegraph with an average issue print readership of 587,000 – down 24.7 per cent over the past year – ahead of southern stablemate Melbourne’s Sunday Herald Sun which has a print readership of 562,000 (down 17.6 per cent).

Other major titles to decline included the Saturday Herald Sun down 14.7 per cent to a readership of 541,000, The Weekend Australian down 11.8 per cent to 524,000, The Sunday Mail in Queensland down 18.5 per cent to 475,000, the Saturday Sydney Morning Herald down 14.8 per cent to 461,000 and Melbourne’s Saturday Age down 14.9 per cent to 428,000 readers.


Top Weekend Newspapers – Ranked by Print Readership*

Publication

Mar 2019

Mar 2020

% Change

‘000s

‘000s

%

Sunday Telegraph

780

587

-24.7%

Sunday Herald Sun

682

562

-17.6%

Saturday Herald Sun

634

541

-14.7%

The Weekend Australian

594

524

-11.8%

The Sunday Mail (Qld)

583

475

-18.5%

Saturday SMH

541

461

-14.8%

Saturday Age

503

428

-14.9%

*Print readership is average issue readership.


The Examiner in Launceston stands out with a significant increase in print readership

The best performing regional newspaper over the past year has clearly been The Examiner based in the Tasmanian city of Launceston which increased its weekday readership by 14.3 per cent to 32,000.

However, the most widely read regional newspaper is its southern counterpart The Hobart Mercury with a readership of 48,000 (down 7.7 per cent) alongside the Newcastle Herald on 48,000 (down 14.3 per cent).

The Gold Coast Bulletin is in a clear third position with a readership of 43,000 (down 17.3 per cent).


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

Publication

Mar 2019

Mar 2020

% Change

‘000s

‘000s

%

The Hobart Mercury

52

48

-7.7%

Newcastle Herald

56

48

-14.3%

Gold Coast Bulletin

52

43

-17.3%

Canberra Times

41

41

-

Townsville Bulletin

43

38

-11.6%

Geelong Advertiser

40

34

-15.0%

The (Launceston) Examiner

28

32

14.3%

*Print readership is average issue readership.