Australian Newsagency Blog

A blog on issues affecting Australia's newsagents, media and small business generally.

Delayed billing does not play in newsagent magazine early return decisions

Mark Fletcher
August 13th, 2014 · 2 Comments

delaybill72.62% of newsagents participating in the early returns survey on the weekend have indicated that delayed billing does not impact early returns decisions.

This will shock some magazine publishers.

I know of publishers who have been encouraged to introduce delayed billing to reduce early returns.

Are you listening publishers? I sincerely hope so. I created this survey for you – to let you hear what newsagents think.

Delayed billing is administratively frustrating and while it’s nice to not have to worry about payment, it does not address the challenges of space and labour allocation to support a title.

The best way for a publisher to ensure a title remains on the shelf is for them to pay us a fair price for the use of our space.

48.81% of respondents say they early return a title because they do not have space to this play it.

The newsagency channel is the only channel selling magazines in Australia where product is sent without regard to the space available for displaying products. Our treatment in this regard disadvantages newsagents and provides our competitors with a competitive advantage.

Magazine publishers ought to study the survey results as should those working for magazine distributors. The results reflect a brokenness that must be fixed if newsagents are to stop retreating from engagement with magazines.

It is in the hands of magazine publishers and magazine distributors to fix this. I am worried that they will realise this too late to save magazines in the newsagency channel.

You can see the survey responses here.

Tomorrow, I will share newsagent responses to my last question:What can publishers and or distributors to do to stop you early returning?


Category: magazine distribution · Magazine oversupply · magazines · Newsagency challenges · Newsagency management · newsagency of the future

2 responses so far ↓

  • 1 jenny // Aug 13, 2014 at 12:58 PM

    Tomorrow we start NDC diary collection DELAYED BILLING, just what I don’t want!
    Two choices here – I can early return or throw in a drawer!


  • 2 BruceH // Aug 13, 2014 at 2:28 PM

    As I check and submit another normal weekly return, it has prompted me to highlight the issue of bagged magazines, which in a way is related to the oversupply issue.
    Sure, we do sell some bagged magazines. However, we send back more than we sell, which is telling of oversupply. With the volume of craft and 4WD bagged magazines we are sent, we simply cannot display them effectively. They crowd out/cover up other unbagged magazines, effectively ruining the display of all of the magazines and possibly affecting sales generally. Therefore, in our shop, bagged magazines have become prime candidates for early return. Further, it is an insult to expect me or my staff to have to unbag and top them!


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