Nielsen area

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As Nielsen areas (including Nielsen areas) is referred to one of the market research firm The Nielsen Company , initially implemented for regional collecting, analyzing and presenting the own market research division of Germany and Austria in different regions.

The Nielsen areas defined by economic criteria, one each or associating several states are on the activities of the Nielsen Company also in the field of market research , marketing , media and advertising planning and sales force management generally recognized as analysis and planning regions, and they also play in the social research a Role.

Nielsen has also introduced comparable territorial classifications for other countries in which the company operates.


The system of the Nielsen areas (English Nielsen Areas) emerged in connection with the introduction of panel studies in market research. The first retail panel to collect real sales data, the “Nielsen Food and Drug Index”, was developed by AC Nielsen in 1933 in the USA. The expanding market research company soon offered its customers such surveys in other countries as well. In the FRG the panel surveys “Nielsen Health and Personal Care Index” (NGI) and “Nielsen Food Index” (NLI) have been carried out since 1954; the country was divided into five Nielsen areas plus West Berlin. In Austria, Nielsen introduced his services and the associated area definitions in 1961.

After German reunification , the new federal states were included in the division.

Purpose of the outline

The division into Nielsen areas is used to collect, evaluate and present market and other data separately for regions that differ in terms of consumer behavior and other market conditions (especially average purchasing power ). The data obtained in this way can in turn be used to adapt product launches, pricing, advertising campaigns, field service assignments, etc. to regional conditions. In this sense, the Nielsen areas are an instrument for geographical market segmentation .

The markets of different Nielsen areas can vary greatly. Many advertising media show their performance data (circulation, target groups) according to Nielsen areas (see also Nielsen conurbation newspapers ).


The German Nielsen areas are:

As can be seen from the list, some Nielsen areas represent an overall group of several federal states. Here, countries have been combined into one area in which as many market conditions as possible, such as purchasing power and consumer behavior, are similar. Originally it was feared that if the geographically neighboring areas 5 (Berlin) and 6 were merged, the very different economic conditions of the two areas would be leveled out. It turned out, however, that the classification of Berlin as a separate purchasing power and test area no longer corresponded to current market conditions; For example, due to the small regional size of the Berlin area, there were greater shifts in purchasing power due to purchases beyond the city limits. Therefore areas 5 and 6 were merged in January 2008.

Allocation to Nielsen areas using the five-digit postcodes alone is not automatically possible, as there are some postcode areas that were assigned across federal states.

Nielsen metropolitan areas

In addition, 13 conurbations are defined around core zones with high population density within the German Nielsen areas. These are comparable with the German metropolitan regions or the agglomerations defined within them .

The Nielsen metropolitan areas are:

Nielsen microregions

In 2015, Nielsen introduced the division into 36 Nielsen micro-regions, which are largely based on the German government districts . The Nielsen microregions allow a more detailed, broken down view of regional consumer landscapes and are intended to enable retailers and manufacturers to further optimize their product range and pricing with regard to regional characteristics, better focus marketing campaigns and field service assignments, and more precisely assess the success of their measures.


Austria can be divided into three or five Nielsen areas:

See also

Web links

Individual evidence

  1. a b c Insa Sjurts (Ed.): Gabler Lexikon Medienwirtschaft . Gabler, Wiesbaden 2011, ISBN 978-3-8349-0140-8 , Nielsen areas, p. 442 ( [1] ).
  2. ^ Jürgen HP Hoffmeyer-Zlotnik: Regionalization of social science survey data: settlement structure and residential area . Westdeutscher Verlag, Wiesbaden 2000, ISBN 978-3-531-13538-0 , 2.3.2 Regional boundaries according to economic criteria, p. 48 ff . ( [2] ).
  3. ^ Stefan Schwarzkopf: The Routledge Companion to Marketing History . Ed .: DG Brian Jones, Mark Tadajewski. Routledge, Abingdon, New York 2016, ISBN 978-0-415-71418-1 , In search of the consumer: The history of market research from 1980 to 1960, pp. 68 ( [3] ).
  4. ^ Erwin Georg Walldorf: Foreign Marketing: Theory and Practice of Foreign Business . Gabler, Wiesbaden 1987, ISBN 978-3-409-13003-5 , panel survey, p. 254 f . ( [4] ).
  5. Tobias Kesting, Carsten Rennhak: Market segmentation in German business practice . Gabler, Wiesbaden 2008, ISBN 978-3-8349-0831-5 , 2.1.1 Geographical segmentation, p. 8 ( [5] ).
  6. ^ Jürgen Heinrich: Medienökonomie: Volume 2: Radio and television . Westdeutscher Verlag, Wiesbaden 1999, ISBN 978-3-531-12713-2 , 6.4.2 State-wide radio advertising markets, p. 390 ff . ( [6] ).
  7. Advertising price list No. 30. (PDF) TAZ , January 1, 2008, accessed on November 4, 2019 .
  8. Oliver Erens: Press work for dummies . Wiley, Weinheim 2010, ISBN 978-3-527-70503-0 , Nielsengebiet, p. 210 ( [7] ).
  9. Joachim Seebohn: Gabler compact lexicon advertising practice . Gabler, Wiesbaden 2005, ISBN 978-3-409-31416-9 , Nielsen-agglomeration, p. 154 ff . ( [8] ).
  10. Nielsen areas become micro-regions. September 21, 2015, accessed November 14, 2019 .
  11. Frauke Schobelt: Trend regionality: Nielsen shows 36 additional areas. September 22, 2015, accessed November 14, 2019 .
  12. Nielsen areas. Retrieved May 21, 2019 .