Expert: Content to go commerce

The rise of comtent.

“What is ‘comtent’? It’s commerce-related content, that subset of content about products, brands, shopping, deals, gift guides, Get the Look features, reviews, etc. More and more mainstream publishers are thinking about how they can weave commerce into their content, and by that I don’t mean they are looking at transacting on their own sites (almost all ventures into this space have failed),” said Alicia Navarro, CEO, SkimLinks. “Publishers are looking at how they can create compelling, appealing, content that can monetize directly (affiliate), can give insights into the products and brands their readers are interested in which feeds into their content strategy and their direct sales strategy, and can monetize indirectly via peripheral advertising and as a result of attracting more sponsored content opportunities.”

The rise of commerce editors.

“This previously unheard of role has become increasingly common within publishers, in their efforts to better capitalise on the value of ‘comtent’. I believe that in 2016, this role will become ubiquitous within even the most established publishers, and the continued success delivered by these Commerce Editors will further incentivise other publishers to pad out their editorial teams. Coupled with the growth in these roles, we’ll begin to see more formalised processes and codes of conduct, so as to protect the quality and integrity of the content,” said Navarro.

Fewer ads per page.

“As viewability and visibility become the norm rather than a premium feature, we’ll see more bold confident publishers strip away most of the display ads on a page to focus on a smaller number of well-targeted yet uninterruptive ads. This is partly driven by the use of ad blockers: they are as popular as they are because too many publishers have crossed the line with the number and intrusiveness of ads, creating a slow and jarring content digestion experience. Publishers can (and should) continue to fight against the ad blockers, but concurrently they need to accept that there is a good reason fueling this trend, and the best way to fight the trend is to lighten up the page, and show fewer but better ads,” said Navarro.

Dec 22, 2015 | 02:12 am


Kristina Knight is a freelance writer based in Ohio, United States. She began her career in radio and television broadcasting, focusing her energies on health and business reporting. After six years in the industry, Kristina branched out on her own. Since 2001, her articles have appeared in Family Delegate, Credit Union Business, and with Threshold Media.