The Internet is firmly integrated in Germans’ everyday use of media and has therefore changed our behavior as consumers: purchase decisions are made online. A third of the 14- to 69-year-olds have already bought a product online as a result of TV advertising. The momentum of TV towards search requests online is significant, particularly for brands which have their own online store. This development is being driven by broadband Internet access with fast data transfer rates.
Overall, e-commerce on all digital devices in Germany is expected to have grown by around 10% to a market volume of EUR 57.3 billion in 2017. As such, e-commerce probably accounted for 10% of total retail in 2017. This was the result of a current study by the Institute of Retail Research in Cologne (Institut für Handelsforschung Köln). According to this study, mobile commerce is likely to have been of great significance for e-commerce growth in Germany in the period under review, with a volume of EUR 23.5 billion (previous year: EUR 18.7 billion). This corresponds to just under 41% of online revenues in Germany overall. The individual e-commerce areas differ in terms of their dynamics. Relevant markets for ProSiebenSat.1 are described below:
- Online dating. According to Statista’s Digital Market Outlook, revenues in the online dating market are likely to have increased to EUR 204 million in 2017 (previous year: EUR 193 million). The online dating market comprises the matchmaking, singles site and casual dating segments. Our portals Parship and ElitePartner belong to the matchmaking segment, which generates the highest revenues in the online dating market and accounts for roughly 43% of total revenues. Recent studies by mds Mediaplanung and ElitePartner highlight the market’s growth potential: Close to 40% of Germans are single, and almost half of these single people use the Internet to look for a partner. In addition, 53% of the Germans surveyed by Statista in 2017 stated that they would pay up to EUR 10 a month for a suitable online portal.
- Online price comparison. The market volume of online comparison portals in the fields of enery, telco, car insurance and consumer loans in Germany is expected to come to approximately EUR 643 million in 2017 (previous year: EUR 565 million). A recent study by WIK Consult shows that more than 70% of Germans use comparison portals. And they do not just rely on a single one: 40% of consumers use more than one comparison portal to find information and conclude contracts.
- Gift experiences. OC&C Strategy Consultants1 cites a volume of around EUR 2.7 billion for the experiences market in Germany in 2017. An examination of purchasing behavior throughout Germany in the 2017 gift experiences report shows that an average of around EUR 109 is spent per gift experience.
- Online travel. Despite geopolitical uncertainty, in 2017 the online travel market in Germany developed at the level of the previous year in key travel destinations. According to Phocuswright Inc., the German market volume was EUR 27.2 billion. According to Verband Internet Reisevertrieb e.V. and FUR Reiseanalyse 2017, half of all vacations (52%) were booked online in Germany in 2016, corresponding to 62 million online vacations.
074 / Research and Development
ProSiebenSat.1 Group does not carry out research and development (R&D) in the conventional sense of an industrial company. Therefore, the activities in this area do not fulfill the traditional definition of R&D, so more detailed information according to DRS 20 is not included in the Management Report. Nonetheless, Research does hold a position of high importance at ProSiebenSat.1 Group.
We conduct intensive market research in every area relevant to our business activities and in every area in which the Company sees growth potential. In 2017, expenses for Group-wide market research activities amounted to EUR 10 million (previous year: EUR 7 million). The various research units prepare investigations and analyses on advertising impact, on trends in the advertising market and digital industries as well as on media use and also assess economic and market projections. Those responsible in the Group use the results of the market analyses for operational and strategic planning. At the same time, market data and analyses are an important basis for successfully advising our advertising clients. With its studies, the Company provides advertisers with valuable knowledge for marketing and advertising planning, which constitutes an important basis for investment decisions.
In the program development phase, program research also plays a decisive role. An important task is the assessment of international TV trends with regard to their potential for the German television market. In addition, the research team regularly provides quantitative and qualitative studies and analyses of the ProSiebenSat.1 stations’ programming. Among other things, new formats are tested with the aid of survey and audience screenings. Besides, the research department also carries out ad hoc tests on shows that have already been broadcast. Based on the results, we can adjust formats in the development phase and optimize TV programs that have already been broadcast, thus increasing success rates.
1 In the context of the for ProSiebenSat.1 Group prepared Commercial Due Diligence Report.