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6 Ways to Optimize Paywall Conversion Rates

Paywalls and subscription strategies are currently taking center stage in the discussions about digital publisher’s revenue models, and it’s easy to see why.

By converting readers into subscribers, you develop a predictable and recurring monetization stream that’s significantly more reliable that ad-only models.

One of the first steps in establishing this strategy is integrating a paywall into your content. And, although this leads to high conversion rates in the first few months as your most engaged users become subscribers, the majority of publishers see this number plateau after some time.

This is definitely a trend amongst publishers and entirely normal, but there are some techniques to employ to reignite conversion rates and optimize your paywall strategy:

  1. Increase paywall visibility rates
  2. A/B testing
  3. Regularly modify wall design
  4. Employ a dynamic strategy
  5. Soft conversion steps
  6. Integrate other steps in the funnel into the wall

Quick question: How do you choose which content to leave ‘open’ and which to make premium by blocking with a paywall?

Paywall success comes down to finding a balance between engagement and frustration.

On the one hand, engagement directly correlates with revenue and is essential to persuading readers to click-through the conversion funnel and subscribe. A certain amount of content should therefore be left open to allow for value discovery, as well as to support your SEO strategy (essential for audience acquisition).

On the other hand, a certain amount of frustration is needed to put just the right amount of pressure on readers to click on your CTA button and continue through the funnel to be able to access content.

Based on Poool’s benchmarks, we’ve found a correlation between wall visibility and conversion rate, but only when <40% of your users are hitting the paywall. After this point, the correlation doesn’t appear to be true anymore, although this doesn’t mean that you can’t go beyond 40% — it depends on your business model and strategy. As always, testing is required to discover the optimal paywall visibility rate for your website and audience.

Find the full article on the Poool Blog!



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Madeleine White

Madeleine White

Content Marketing Manager at Poool — turning your audience into leads, members and revenue!