Web classifieds was a $2 bln industry in 2004

The Newspaper Association of America expects the market for print newspaper classified advertising to grow 5.2% to $17.4 bln in 2005. Print newspaper classified revenue declined from 2001 to 2003, when the broader ad market was soft, but has risen in every other year since the Web went mainstream in 1995. The Kelsey Group estimates that total revenue from US Web classifieds was $1.95 bln in 2004, excluding eBay, but including sites operated by newspapers. Auto sales typically constitute the biggest chunk of classified ad spending at newspapers, followed by help-wanted and real-estate listings, while Web classifieds are dominated by jobs, followed by dating and autos.