The New York Times Sees Page Views Fall 24 percent from March to April
NYT blames slow news month for losses, not paywall.
The New York Times may be starting to experience the price of their paywall, as page views for The New York Times Online fell 24.4 percent in April from March numbers.
According to an article with Ad Age, a representative from The Times says that these numbers reflect a quieter news month for April; March saw the Japan tsunami and the subsequent situation at the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant. The Times spokeswoman also cited other news organizations whose page views fell: Yahoo News had a 23.9 percent decline in month-over month comparison, and MSNBC’s number of page views fell 21.4 percent.
The Times spokeswoman says, “…given that this is the first month where you can see the traffic patterns post-digital subscription launch, these are actually better numbers than our internal projections.”
Newly released data from ComScore shows that NYT’s portion of U.S. page views for all newspaper Web sites fell from March’s 13 percent to April’s 10.6 percent.
During its first quarter conference call, Times Co. said 100,000 new subscribers had signed up since its paywall launch on March 28. The paywall allows NYT online readers 20 free article views; once this number is reached, The Times then offers the reader a variety of options in which to subscribe to NYTimes.com, including mobile phone and tablet options.
Print subscribers of The Times and International Herald Tribune are able to view the site free of charge.
In an effort to drum up digital subscriptions, NYT launched a 50 percent discount initiative to its digital subscribers for a 26-week trial period. The all-digital access package, with NYTimes.com, tablet and smartphone access, is set at $4.39 for the duration of the trial period.