It is no secret that paywalls have played a monumental role in the support and growth of digital newspapers since the downfall of ad revenue due to the rise of ad blockers. Publishers were left with no choice but to depend on their readers to maintain and preserve the stability of their service as a whole. While many remain skeptical about charging readers for content with the concerns of loss of readership, here are some examples of digital news outlets that have led the way and thrived thanks to paywalls.
Digital Newspapers That Use Paywalls
The New York Times
The world-renowned New York Times is one of the best-known examples of an effective news paywall. The NYT utilizes a metered paywall that enables readers only a limited amount of articles before they are prompted to create an account. The results not only saved the 171-year-old newspaper but rather turned it into one of the most reputable in the world and definitely the largest in the US in terms of digital readership. In just ten years, The NYT has acquired over 7 million subscribers and loosened its dependency on unstable ad revenues to depend almost entirely on its readers and subscribers.
Education Week has been America’s most trusted resource for K-12 education news and information with 1.8+ million monthly unique readers & national coverage. EdWeek provides various subscription offerings like digital subscriptions, print subscriptions, and group licenses. The digital subscriptions are gated via two different types of paywalls; an embedded paywall (shown above) and a metered paywall (shown below). The idea was to encourage readers to take action and subscribe from various different places on the website. Since then, Edweek has seen a 24% increase in sales after improving its paywall service.
Stars & Stripes
A uniquely American newspaper, S&S (Stars and Stripes Publications) operates as a first amendment news media publication under the U.S. D.O.D. (Department of Defense). It has been sending reporters to cover every major US military conflict since 1942. After delivering over 500,000 digital editions in 2019, the paper knew that turning towards subscriptions and gating content was the only logical step to maintain in operation. In 2019, Stars and Stripes launched a metered paywall on their website, allowing readers access only to five articles before they are forced to subscribe to continue reading. Since then, Stars and Stripes have seen a 203% increase in subscriptions with an average monthly increase of 17%.
How Pelcro Can Help With News Paywalls?
Two of the three examples above are proudly part of Pelcro’s ecosystem and are still experiencing subscription growth as a result of implementing paywalls. Selecting the right paywall becomes increasingly important when ensuring that your readers are translating into subscribers. Here at Pelcro, we focus on optimizing your subscriber experience with fast sign-ups and a self-serve dashboard. To learn more about Pelcro’s subscription and membership platform, book a demo with one of our representatives for an exclusive one-on-one product tour, or get started with your free trial right away and see for yourself.