Hawke’s Bay News website receives over 11,500 unique visitors in one day.
Website publisher Max Patmoy has found the move, to reading local news online growing at an unbelievable rate.
Mr. Patmoy has been publishing Hawke’s Bay news on www.hawkesbay.co.nz for over 12 years and in the last two weeks has seen a huge rise in the number of online readers.
Up until recently the number of daily visits was in the range 500 to 800 per day.
Two weeks ago it rose to an average of over 7,000 visits a day with a record number of 11,611 unique visitors last Sunday.
Mr. Patmoy said that according to their rate card Hawke’s Bay Today has a daily website reach of 2,714 per day or 19,000 per week. Their print circulation is 24,464.
The increase in popularity of online news mirrors the decline in newspaper sales as, Mr. Patmoy said, most people do not have the time to sit down with a big newspaper and read it cover to cover.
Chief executive Brett Chenoweth of APN (owners of Hawke’s Bay Today) said that a review of their regional product portfolio is likely to result in a reduction in the number of publishing days of some of our titles and the adoption of a digital-first approach in some of our markets.
With a six month loss of A$319.4 million and a share drop of 50 cents across the APN group, some regional newspapers in New Zealand could close.
The Napier and Hastings Mail together with HB Country Scene have just started the Hawke’s Bay Sun, another online newspaper.
Sarah Ericksen Manager of the Hawke’s Bay Sun is very confident and has been planning the website for two years. “Early days yet but it’s the right time for the website” she said.
Mr. Patmoy was confident that online news on personal computers, Smart phones and tablets would take over from newspapers. Mr. Patmoy also pledged that his site www.hawkesbay.co.nz would never charge viewers to read the news.