News relaunches with increased focus on video and geographical targeting features

Nine Entertainment has relaunched its news vertical,, shifting its focus towards mobile and video and targeting news based on geographical location.

The new website will now have a mobile video-first approach, as part of Nine’s plans to grow online audiences around and its associated websites.

The new website features a location setting, live streaming and more of a focus on video

Nine’s revamped version of will include a geographical location feature, which will tailor the news based on the city or state of the consumer. It also features looping video teasers, and a live streaming offering of major news events featured in the top right-hand corner of the website.

Speaking with Mumbrella ahead of the launch, Josie MacRae, head of digital news, for Nine said the change came off the back of feedback from Nine’s audience who were seeking better navigation and localisation.

“The feedback from the audience was that we could give it more geography and make it easy to navigate and easier to find our content.

“We’ve taken the strengths, which is the Nine News brand, video and localisation and found a platform that will work for the whole country effectively with that sort of video at the heart of it.

“The idea is that we’ve tried to make it easy to navigate, the layout is clean and clear and with the localisation function, it’s allowing us to really target our stories more,” she told Mumbrella.

MacRae explained content and leads will be prioritised based on a particular region, dependent on what resonates best with that particular audience.

MacRae: “We’ve tried to make it easy to navigate, the layout is clean and clear and with the localisation function, it’s allowing us to really target our stories more”

She acknowledged it was one of the new website’s key points of differentiation, alongside mobile and video.

“So many of the other sites have that whole national focus and they’re trying to be all things to all people and as we know in Australia, we are one country but we are very much state focused and much of our news comes from your city in your state. This way we can try to get the tone right and reach people in a way they wanted to be reached,” she said.

She added: “Mobile is really going to be at the heart of what we do going forward and we all know that the audience is increasingly on their phone, so for everybody in the industry that’s very much where we are focused.

The new website as seen on mobile

“We know that advertisers want video and we’re incredibly well positioned to provide it. We have our own video, we create our own video, we have hundreds of cameramen across the country every day in every market that are out there filming our video. We are in an amazing position going forward so we actually have the asset that everybody wants.”

For MacRae, another major component of the site’s relaunch will be its live streaming offering, which can be seen as events occur, in the header of the website.

Breaking news, such Laurie Oakes’ Trump audio last week, will also be more of a focus for the website.

“The whole idea is that it should feel a bit like a television experience so it’s not a newspaper online,” MacRae said.

MacRae is confident the new website will provide new opportunities for advertisers, pointing to the increased importance of pre-roll ads.

“We are going out into market now, looking at areas around sponsored content, we are looking at areas around sponsorship of segments of what we are doing around the site.

“Obviously with video being a huge feature, pre-roll ads will be really important to us going forward and we are setting ourselves up with some pretty ambitious goals in that area which is great.”

Her main goal following the relaunch will be growing the audience as well as growing video engagement.

“The audience is really big, and I really firmly believe we can grow it substantially so that’s the main target, and video. Getting people to engage with our video,” she said.

“ is part of the family so we are an important part of that. Obviously we are one news group and we work really closely together with all the sites that are within our family between Honey, News, Wide World of Sports, we co-ordinate really really closely.

“Our aim is to really fully exploit everything we have within the Nine News business and I think that’s starting to pay dividends,” she added.

“All of us are really looking for where the audience is shifting, and how we actually take it. We are television by heritage and we are now looking at how we bring all of our staff and all of our teams into the digital process and what’s great is that they’re really really up for it.”

The news comes as ranked as the second commercial news website in the country, reporting 4.727m readers in May.


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