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When To Use a Hard Paywall

Updated: Jan 29


With Paywalls on the rise, it is no surprise that 76% of American newspapers now have content gated behind paywalls. Paywalls became a savior for the publishing industry, reoccurring and predictable income made paywalls the optimum solution for any media or news organization. When deciding to implement a paywall, you must decipher which paywall style is best for your business. In this blog post, we will discuss hard paywalls and the pros and cons when implementing this style.


What is a Hard Paywall?

First, let’s cover the basics. A hard paywall is a type of content barrier whereby access is only available to those who have purchased a subscription. The word “hard” really does define this type of paywall solution accurately, as hard paywalls are the least malleable type of paywall and are the ones that offer the reader zero access before a subscription has taken place. A good example of a hard paywall would be The Wall Street Journal, but in the case of TWJ, this is a hard embedded paywall, allowing the reader access only to the first paragraph of the article.

When To Use A Hard Paywall:

It is highly recommended that these three conditions be met before considering using hard paywalls:

  1. The Name, History, and Reputation Factor: Publications and media outlets with well-known and fully established names such as The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, The Washington Post, and The Guardian, can indeed take advantage of their already trusted and well-established reputation and utilize hard paywalls because people are already familiar with their type of content and long formidable history in general.

  2. The Exclusivity Factor: If you’re writing about certain low-competition topics and addressing a very niche audience, say for instance your content is about cryptocurrencies or you’re offering exclusive stock market insights, then a hard paywall would be beneficial. However, in order to have the exclusivity factor working on your side, your content needs to be extremely scarce, in high demand, and most importantly, it ought to be trustworthy.

  3. The Unique Voice Factor: Having an elite team of skilled and talented wordsmiths means the success of your hard paywall. When implementing an embedded hard paywall where readers can only read the first few sentences of an article or first paragraph at most, the quality and speed at which the writer can both steal the reader’s attention and retain his or her interest are crucial. Well-articulated hook sentences written in an engrossing style can multiply your conversion rates exponentially over time! Don’t cheap out on talent.

How Pelcro Can Help With Paywalls?

Selecting the right paywall becomes increasingly important in ensuring that your readers are translating into subscribed users. Here at Pelcro, our goal is to make your journey to a profitable subscription business, smooth and seamless. To learn more about Pelcro, 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.


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