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BizReport : Research archives : November 17, 2009

Forrester: 80% of Americans unwilling to pay for online content

Oh dear. Forrester has bad news for those who are considering charging consumers for access to online newspapers, magazines and articles. It appears that most people in the U.S. just aren't prepared to part with cash for content.

by Helen Leggatt

forrester logo.gifA whopping 80% of U.S. consumers surveyed by Forrester Research said they were unwilling to pay for access to online content. This despite 60% of newspaper executives considering paid content options, according to recent American Press Institute research (.pdf).

Keeping the other 20%, who are willing to pay for online content, happy will be a complex task, too. Around 8% would prefer paying a subscription fee to access all online content and another 8% want to pay a subscription to access content across the Internet, print media and mobile.

A small number (3%) would prefer micro-payments that enabled them to pay for individual items.

According to the report author, Forrester analyst Sarah Rotman Epps, the data suggests publishers have a couple of options:

1. Continue to offer free, ad-supported products to the 80% of consumers who won't pay for content online.

2. Offer consumers a choice of multichannel subscriptions, single-channel subscriptions, and micro-payments for premium product access.

Tags: online content, online media, paid content, subscriptions

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