Research from YouGov SixthSense has found that UK magazine buyers feel a strong affinity for print, and this is especially true of women. Overall, 40 per cent of UK magazine buyers prefer print to digital (45 per cent of women), 35 per cent like the look and feel of printed magazines (41 per cent women) and 32 per cent like the convenience of print magazines (36 per cent women).
When it comes to digital, more than 11 per cent of magazine buyers read magazines - both online and in print, and fewer than one in ten (nine per cent) are reading more online.
Men have taken to digital options with significantly greater enthusiasm than women: 14 per cent read both online and print compared with nine per cent of women, and men are three times as likely to read more online compared with women (15 per cent versus five per cent).
Despite the appreciation of print as a medium, around half (47 per cent) of all magazine purchasers say they are buying less often. However in contrast, almost three in ten (28 per cent) have not changed their buying and a small minority of 5 per cent are buying more often.
Cost is a particular issue for magazine buyers: 27 per cent of men and 34 per cent of women are buying less often because of cost. Busy lifestyles are also an important factor, with 18 per cent of those who buy magazines claiming to have less time to read magazines now.
Commenting on the findings, YouGov SixthSense research director James McCoy said: âPreference on this scale suggests that magazines still have a healthy future in print, although prospects vary by sector according to the attitudes of different reader groups, and this will inevitably change over time. It is possible that digital formats have made some inroads on physical print sales but these findings point the finger at cost and shortage of time as being far more influential factors.â