Publishers who use Press+, the metered access platform created by Journalism Online and now owned by RR Donnelley, are raising subscription prices and lowering the number of articles visitors can view for free before having to pay.
Far from seeing online readership drop after implementing paywalls (as once feared), publishers feel confident enough to push the model further for
Among the more than 400 publishers using the Press+ platform, the average price for a monthly subscription has increased from $6.66 in July 2011 to $9.26 today, for 39% growth in less than two years; 5% of that increase came in the last six months, a survey of Press+ customers conducted by the company.
Most publishers have reduced the number of articles visitors can view for free before running into a subscription roadblock -- from 13 in January 2012 to 10 today. Currently, 35% of Press+ publishers allow free access to five articles or less, while 41% allow free access to six to 10 articles, 18% allow access to 11 to 15 articles, and 5% allow access to 16 articles or more.
What’s more, according to Press+ co-founder Gordon Crovitz, publishers are enjoying the benefits of increased circulation revenue without sacrificing any online advertising revenue; however Press+ didn’t release any figures on this score.
The list of publishers that have used the Press+ online metered access model include DigitalFirst Media, Tribune Company, GateHouse Media, McClatchy, Lee Enterprises, Halifax Media and Postmedia.