UK classifieds overview and recruitment category outlook

23 October 2013

Our annual series of reports on expenditure on advertising in the classified verticals of jobs, property and autos, kicks off with an overview of the print-to-digital transition that has lifted the share of digital to close to 50% by 2012. The advantages of online for professional classified advertisers in relation to print include: national reach; measurability and tracking software; value-for-money for listings; dense user experience; and advertiser add-ons. Aside from the fragmented recruitment market, the UK’s online classified marketplaces for property and autos are highly consolidated around one or just two suppliers. Second-tier property supplier Zoopla Property Group is slated for an IPO in 2014 or in 2015, and the sale will be helped by the buoyant housing market. An IPO of AutoTrader is also widely expected, amidst a more general recovery of transactions in the sector. Our recruitment segment analysis highlights the more positive trends in the labour market in 2013, which are to continue in 2014 and 2015. However, the online recruitment market is highly fragmented on the advertiser side due to the myriad of companies and positions being filled, also splintering the online market across a large number of job boards, aggregated by Indeed. On the jobseekers side, professionals are increasingly being drawn to LinkedIn or category-specific professional networks, attracting employer expenditure on recruitment advertising. LinkedIn is the single biggest online supplier in the UK and is also the more dynamic through network effects and price competition on listings. We project about 5-7% annual growth of expenditure on online recruitment to 2017, amidst a terminal collapse in advertising in print.

Recent reports