How some publishers are beating the new digital lulls

For magazine media generally, the Magazine Media 360º Brand Audience Report for July shows continued contraction in desktop traffic (-14.4% versus the same period last year) that is now being joined by flattening or contraction in mobile web activity (-2.2%).

It’s still hard to tell how real the mobile stasis is, since the aggregator of this data—the MPA—reported last month that January 2017 changes to the comScore methodology around desktop and mobile had changed.

We’ll get a clearer sense early next year whether, and to what degree, mobile may be growing. In terms of organic smartphone growth, we are already at the point of saturation—81% of cell phone owners as of December 2017 (comScore).

By some accounts, north of 80% of our mobile screen time is being spent in apps rather than the web, but most magazines gave up any dream of pulling mobile eyeballs into their own media branded app long ago—for good reason. According to comScore’s latest mobile usage metrics, more than half of users’ time is spent in only five apps. In fact, 49% of overall mobile time is spent in one app.

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