Planet Sport’s publishing division celebrates record growth

The Planet Sport network has continued to enjoy growth in 2023 across its owned and operated publishing titles with a record-breaking November posted for both traffic and ad revenue.

Bucking gloomy media industry-wide trends, Planet Sport has enjoyed an impressive 30% Year-on-Year uptick in monthly traffic across all of its titles.

This comes as a result of several tech and content implementations across the network’s major titles. Many of the titles’ websites, brand identities and digital presences in general have benefitted from a complete overhaul in the last 18 months.

The project consolidated Planet Sport’s mission to entertain and engage fans, providing its users with a sleek, smooth and fair ad experience with every visit.

Front end redesigns

The primary considerations of redesigning the websites was to enhance technical SEO performance, enhancing the user experience and helping the sites improve their search engine rankings.

The design, product and technology teams focussed on:

  • Increasing site speed
  • Improving content responsiveness
  • Optimising for mobile
  • Improving crawlability

In February 2023, our Formula 1 title debuted its new branding and site. By the end of November, the site’s page views had increased by over 46% compared with the same period last year.

Similarly, Planet Rugby released their reinvigorated site and brand, and climbed over 122% in a comparable timeframe.

On a combined basis, these improvements have helped monthly traffic increase to a consistent 50 million monthly page views across the network.

"While it's true that Planet Sport's foundations lie in content production and publishing, we've always been serious about the tech that lies underneath supporting it. As users continue to evolve their means of consuming content, we continue to develop new, innovative ways to deliver it to them."
- Nik Keene, Chief Product Officer, Planet Sport.

Captivating content

We're more than aware that good tech can only get you so far. Without compelling, original content, any publisher will never retain and continue to delight an audience.

Planet Sport is laser focused on creating engaging content that excites sport audiences and keeps them coming back for more. While most of the media industry has been retrenching in the last year or more, Planet Sport has been investing - adding to its well-organised, hand-picked teams of journalists and content producers. 

These teams have been producing high-quality activations, exclusive stories, and insightful interview features with the people who matter in sport.

Planet Sport’s Head of Publishing, Mark Holmes reflected:

“As publishers, our success is inherently wedded to the audience our content reaches. That makes it imperative that we're constantly optimising our output to suit the various platforms where our content lives - and find new ones to reach different audiences. 

"With social referrals dramatically decreasing for many publishers, and Google forever changing their algorithms, maintaining traffic at more than 50 million page views on our owned-and-operated websites is testament to how successfully our publishers are providing our audiences with the content they want to read."

Ad revenue records

Traffic numbers aren’t the only metric to break records in November. Planet Sport also reported a 24% year-on-year increase in advertising revenue for the month. While this is partly down to increased traffic, it doesn’t tell the whole story.

Planet Sport has continued to harness the power of best-in-market AdTech capabilities, helping increase revenues for our own titles and those of our partners. The Planet Sport Advertising Team are proud to have increased year-on-year ad yield by 10% through:

  • Analysing and utilising data to serve better, more relevant ads to fans
  • Testing and optimising on-site ad positions to provide better engagement
  • Continually fine-tuning Planet Sport's programmatic advertising provision

Planet Sport’s Chief Commercial Officer, George Odysseos commented:

“The AdTech industry is constantly evolving, so it’s incredibly important to keep up to pace with the market. We’ve placed a great focus on augmenting our advertising capabilities over the past 18 months.”

“Our team is always keenly following updates and we’ve been rolling out updates and improvements that we’re thrilled to be seeing the fruits of now. Much more success to come in 2024!”