New York Times takes hit on website traffic after it starts charging for access

Not very surprisingly given that people are given a certain number of free page views before they have to start paying under the new system, there has been a bigger hit in the number of page views than the number of visitors.

Hitwise analyzed the traffic to the New York Times website before and after the paywall went up on March 28. Already, it’s taken a hit. Aside from a spike on Saturday — which Hitwise suspects was due to the potential government shutdown — there has been a decrease in overall visits between 5% and 15%, or roughly six million visitors per month. Page views also saw a significant decline, falling between 11% and 30%. . . .

Minyanville reaches a not very obvious conclusion: "So not only are fewer people visiting the New York Times, those who do are reading fewer articles. Yes, it's still early in the experiment, but these numbers don't add up to a paywall success story." The question is how much their revenue increases, and these charges could easily offset any lost advertising revenue from reduced viewership.



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