How is That Union PayWall Working Out?

Russ Steele

The Union launched a Pay Wall on the 23rd of January.  I am doing some long term tracking under the Union Readers navigation button above, however it can be informative to take a quick look snapshot.

 One word of caution, these are small numbers. The real world will be more evident over a much longer period. The name of the game is capturing eyeballs and the initial response is fewer online eyeballs at the Union web site.   Stay Tuned

The data used in the chart above was taken from Quantcast


About Russ Steele
Freelance writer and climate change blogger. Russ spent twenty years in the Air Force as a navigator specializing in electronics warfare and digital systems. After his service he was employed for sixteen years as concept developer for TRW, an aerospace and automotive company, and then was CEO of a non-profit Internet provider for 18 months. Russ's articles have appeared in Comstock's Business, Capitol Journal, Trailer Life, Monitoring Times, and Idaho Magazine.

3 Responses to How is That Union PayWall Working Out?

  1. Stephen says:

    Well, keep in mind that it really isn’t “all about eyeballs”. You should know that online newspapers generally sell out only 25-40% of their online ad placements. This means that 60% of their pages sell out at remnant rate to ad syndicates. Ad syndicates are the ones that put up those ads like “Trainers hate this man!” or ” One old weird trick to get rid of belly fat”. At remnant rate, every single one of these ads revenues lumped together generally gets about 100-200 dollars a month for a smaller paper like this. That, however is a HIGH number. It is often much much less. I have heard stories of papers making only 10 to 20 dollars per month on these ads. Needless to say, the paper would have to lose 60% of pageviews to be hurt on the ad side. This is why they are all putting up paywalls. Even a dozen subscribers can beat the revenue that they get from remnant rate ads.

  2. Russ says:


    Thanks for sharing that insight. It will be interesting to see how the change plays out in our little community. A former editor, now local blogger, is making a big deal out of the paywall going up. He may not be aware of your insight to the revenue issues. Thanks!

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