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Auction Site The Winner In Classified Competition

An auction site offering free classified adverts may soon challenge hard copy publications if figures are anything to go by.

Internet auction site stuff.com.au has experienced a 48 per cent growth in new users each week in the three weeks since the service was launched, with page impressions registering a 16 per cent increase over the same period.

The introduction of these services, which offer improved, faster access and extensive search facilities, has the potential to threaten the newspaper and magazines, whose classifieds constitute a major source of revenue.

Some publishers, such as John Fairfax and News Corp offer free online classifieds to those who have already paid for the printed version, but neither have so far been prepared to give these away for free.

Stuff.com.au is the first major Australian site to offer the classified service for free, with total number of registered users around 25,000, with some 5,000 live auctions and classified adverts running at any one time on the site.

Stuff.com.au has the support of Internet service provider OzEmail and free email service provider Start. It has also teamed with online radio station 96.1FM in a mutual link arrangement.

96.1's site is consistently within the top five music and radio monthly destinations in Australia, according to site ratings companyWhere Did We Go?

Stuff.com.au has also moved ahead of fellow auction sites GoFish and Ubid in the Top 100's online ratings.



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