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Newspapers in Germany - Statistics & Facts

The German newspaper market looks back on a long history of publishing and consumption. Among print media, newspapers are still considered influential, with titles ranging from municipal to national. Some of the best-known national newspapers in Germany are published daily. However, newspapers, as print media in general, are facing falling sales figures year after year. The paid circulation of daily and Sunday newspapers in Germany has been decreasing for over twenty years now, amounting to 14.9 million copies sold in 2019. At the same time, e-paper versions have seen increasing sales during 2019-2020. This example illustrates a continuous trend in the print media industry, namely a constantly growing preference among consumers for online media consumption. In this case, consumption relates to online or digital versions of newspapers formerly bought and read on paper.

Total figures on daily newspaper circulation in Germany further confirm a decrease in copies printed, with 13.5 million recorded in 2019. For comparison, ten years earlier almost 20 million copies were printed, which also already followed annual drops in numbers. Even the Sunday edition of Germany's best-known tabloid, Bild am Sonntag, was struggling with paid circulation in recent years. Meanwhile, monthly unique user numbers on the Bild website, though fluctuating, recorded periodical growth during 2019-2020, especially during March 2020. The latter may be attributable to the coronavirus (COVID-19) epidemic in Germany, with readers spending longer periods of time at home or even being quarantined. In fact, not only the Bild online version, but Die Welt, Süddeutsche Zeitung and Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung (FAZ), all national daily newspapers, were among the leading news websites in Germany, also in March 2020. Digital newspapers had the highest reach among the 30-49 age group.

The Bild national daily edition recorded the biggest reach by far among German readers, followed by the Süddeutsche Zeitung and the FAZ. Around half of the German population still reads newspapers in their free time several times weekly, though these numbers have also been decreasing in the last four years. An increasing number of consumers read newspapers several times a month. In 2018, almost 28.4 million people in Germany lived in a household with a daily newspaper subscription.

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Newspapers in Germany

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