Internet Publishing & Web Search Portals

Industry Profile Report

Dive Deep into the industry with a 25+ page industry report (pdf format) including the following chapters

Industry Overview Current Conditions, Industry Structure, How Firms Operate, Industry Trends, Credit Underwriting & Risks, and Industry Forecast.

Call Preparation Call Prep Questions, Industry Terms, and Weblinks.

Financial Insights Working Capital, Capital Financing, Business Valuation, and Financial Benchmarks.

Industry Profile Excerpts

Industry Overview

The 6,800 Internet publishing and web search firms in the US provide online media, broadcasting services, and search capabilities for the Internet. Internet publishing firms help clients develop and distribute online media including books, magazines, journals, newspapers, greeting cards, directories, coupon books, atlases and guides, dictionaries, yearbooks, and comic books. Internet broadcasters stream music, videos, video games, news, worship services and other live and recorded digital media. Web search portal firms primarily generate and maintain massive, searchable databases of Internet addresses and content, but may also offer services such as email, auctions, news, and exclusive content.

Rapid Technology Changes

The ways that people search for and consume information and entertainment are constantly evolving.

Cookies, Privacy & Regulation

The use of “cookies” by web portals, advertisers and content providers allows them to mine user data themselves, reducing internet publishers’ control over that data and their ability to sell it.

Industry size & Structure

The typical Internet publishing and web search portal firm operates out of a single location and generates about $32 million annually.

    • The Internet publishing and web search portal industry consists of about 6,800 companies which employ about 290,200 workers and generate about $217 billion annually.
    • Most companies are small - about 82% have a single location and 70% employ less than 5 workers.
    • The industry is concentrated with the 20 largest firms accounting for 74% of industry revenue.
    • Large publishing and broadcasting firms include Kindle Direct, Blurb, Lulu, Issuu, Evites, Wikipedia, Statista, Pandora, YouTube and Netflix.
    • The largest search portals are owned by technology and telecommunications firms: Alphabet (Google), Microsoft (Bing), Verizon (Yahoo) and Facebook Business. Large vertically-integrated portals include Kayak (travel), Amazon and eBay (e-commerce), LinkedIn (jobs) and WebMD (health).
    • The industry is geographically concentrated with 25% of establishments located in California, 9% in New York, 7% in Florida and 6% in Texas.
                              Industry Forecast
                              Internet Publishing & Web Search Portals Industry Growth
                              Source: Vertical IQ and Inforum

                              Recent Developments

                              Nov 5, 2022 - Movie Premiers may Move Back To Theaters
                              • Warner Brothers Discovery CEO David Zaslav recently cited the importance of theatrical releases as opposed to producing expensive, blockbuster-sized movies solely for streaming. Experts say that it marks a turn for a studio that, under previous management, dumped nearly its entire 2021 movie slate onto HBO Max on the same day as its theatrical releases. Zaslav added that movies sent directly to streaming have done “almost nothing for HBO Max in terms of viewership, retention, or love of the service.”
                              • A federal judge dismissed two antitrust lawsuits accusing e-commerce giant Amazon and five large publishers of illegally conspiring to fix US prices of electronic and traditional books. Consumers accused the defendants of signing agreements that let the publishers inflate e-book prices by locking in a 30% "agency" fee for Amazon on each sale, and guaranteeing that Amazon's prices would not be undercut. Retail booksellers alleged in a separate lawsuit that Amazon had been awarded a "discriminatory discount" on hardbacks, paperbacks and mass-produced books, forcing them to pay higher wholesale prices to the publishers and depressing book sales. Judge Valerie Figueredo recommended that both lawsuits be dismissed, citing a lack of evidence of collusion.
                              • Magna, a unit of Interpublic Group of Companies' Mediabrands, cut its forecast for nonpolitical ad spending for the second half of this year and its total advertising spending growth forecast for 2023. Company analysts say that a weaker economic environment is likely to cut into consumer spending. Items like food, drinks, personal care, and household goods ‘are especially at risk as firms are forced to increase product prices and face the possibility of consumers trading down in favor of cheaper brands.’ Advertising expenditures will decrease as a result. Ad spending growth for all of 2022 will come in at 9.8%, Magna said, less than the 11.1% forecast in June. The growth forecast for 2023 was cut to 4.8% from the June prediction of 5.8% growth.
                              • Audience measurement leader Nielsen is under pressure for its slow response to measuring a more complex media environment in which fewer people are watching traditional TV and more are streaming. Industry experts say that TV networks are relying more heavily on Nielsen rivals and trying to gain more control over the process. Companies including iSpot, VideoAmp, and comScore, are all hoping to launch an “alternate currency” to the one Nielsen already provides. Some experts say that more options is likely to create more confusion. “Is it sustainable? No,” says David Spencer, manager of emerging media and partnerships at General Motors, one of the nation’s largest advertisers. “We have to have a single source of measurement, because we can’t have five companies each telling us a different number.”
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