July was apparently a horrible month for B2B publishers in the U.S. as The Association of Business Information & Media Companies (ABM) reported that ad pages fell 10.13 percent in July, and are now down 8.56 percent on the year. The far less reliable revenue numbers show a somewhat smaller decrease of 4.53 percent.
The hardest hit categories in July were health care, which saw ad pages fall 28.88 percent, and pharmaceuticals, a related category, down 24.26 percent. For the year, computing and health care are suffering the biggest declines, down 20.39 and 17.91 percent a piece. Agriculture was the only category measured that showed decent gains, up 5.88 percent for the year.
Many B2B publishers, encouraged by last year's less than disastrous were hoping to see solid gains this year. The yea, though, has proven to be a disappointment.