The best audience on the internet - but also the most elusive - is the 'online elite'. Members of the 'online elite' are frequent visitors to "quality editorial websites", according to new research commissioned by the Association of Online Publishers (AOP).

Content is important, but it’s context that’s king

The research was undertaken to investigate users’ reaction to advertising in different online environments and supports the case that advertisers should take account of quality of site audience rather than volume.

Special interest websites – hmm, such as, and – attract high-quality visitors who bookmark their favourite, daily-updated sites and visit frequently.

By comparing users and non-users of 20 leading branded quality content websites, the AOP study confirmed the existence of an ‘online elite’ among web users in terms of demographics and behavior.

The research shows that for the ‘online elite’, the internet is critical for decision-making with more than 85 per cent claiming they often refer to the internet before buying something, while when they need information the internet is the first place they look.

Moreover, the ‘online elite’ is responsive to advertising. Eighty per cent admitted to clicking on an online advertisement to find out more, while 67 per cent admitted to having performed three or more actions (such as bookmarking a site, purchasing a product, requesting further information) as a direct result of seeing online adverting.

For the online elite, context is king when it comes to online advertising. These users react more positively to advertising on websites they have a strong relationship with and feel are relevant to them. More than 50 per cent say they pay more attention to advertising on websites they trust, while more than 60 per cent say they prefer to see online advertising that relates to the content they are viewing.

Bill Murray, chairman of AOP and MD of Haymarket Motoring Publications, said:

"Our research has confirmed that the stronger the relationship users have with a site, the more positive their reaction to its advertising. The findings are great news for online publishers as they can demonstrate to advertisers the value of advertising on quality content sites, and therefore reaching the sought-after ‘online elite’."

Source: Periodical Publishers’ Association

In other news...

Restrap adds to premium dealer programme with two new dedicated sales agents in the UK

Restrap has announced the appointment of two new dedicated sales agents within the UK, to …