05/03/2014 11:08 GMT | Updated 06/03/2014 06:59 GMT

How The Daily Mail Will Boost Traffic By 30m Overnight With Surprise Metro Takeover Deal

Edward Smith/EMPICS Entertainment
General View of The Daily Mail from the 04/12/2012 which was the day after Kate, The Duchess of Cambridge and William, The Duke of Cambridge, announced that they were expecting their first child. The future heir will be third in line to the throne.

It is famed for its sidebar of shame - and now the Mail Online is set to boost its traffic overnight by almost 30m.

Staff at, the digital version of the hugely successful morning freesheet, will become part of the Mail's "terracotta army" reporting into "General" Martin Clarke.

The dramatic shift in strategy also comes a week after Steve Auckland, managing director of Metro, told the Media Guardian: "Love print. That's Metro now. Print first, not digital first."

In recent weeks which has a team of 25, has lost its head of content, Martin Ashplant, to morning rival City A.M. Richard James, the deputy editor, has upped stumps and moved to Buzzfeed, while Richard Moynihan - who ran social - has moved to the Telegraph.

In recent months Metro has moved its content strategy towards social sharing where it has seen huge success and reports traffic has increased by 350% year on year.

As a result of this change,’s content, sales and development teams will join MailOnline.

Steve Auckland said, “The team have done a brilliant job on a limited budget. The three million daily uniques achieved on 18 February gave us a glimpse of the audience potential of this website and the camaraderie that exists within the team.

"However, the potential to accelerate this growth and monetise it is best served by the MailOnline team at this moment in time. It will free the rest of the business to concentrate on reinvigorating Metro.”