Associated Newspapers is considering selling advertising space for its free newspaper Metro over the Net.
Press buyers and clients will be able to look at a flatplan and book ads online if the project goes ahead later this year.
At present, no national papers sell ads to press buyers online.
Metro managing director Mike Anderson says: “I would like Metro to be able to transact online. By putting the flatplan online, there will no problem showing what is available.”
He hopes to have the online transactional model in place by the end of the year. Admitting that Metro will be a “case study” for the rest of the group’s titles, which include the Daily Mail and Mail on Sunday, Anderson says: “I think they will see how we are doing.”
Metro is now available in London, Manchester, Birmingham, Edinburgh and Scotland, and is thought to have a national daily distribution of 680,000.
According to the Audit Bureau of Circulations, London Metro, which is available at Tube and over-ground railway stations, had an average daily distribution of 359,710 copies in February.
Further regional issues are likely to be launched this year.