The Financial Times’ way to engage readers and monetize successfully

b-nikkeift-a-20150806

When people think about the Financial Times they think about journalism

The Financial Times converts its free readers to paying subscribers through a focus of accurate journalism. Thus, the FT is trying to make their journalism accessible no matter where it appears. This led to a redesign of its website, focusing on its loading speed on mobile devices.

Over half of FT’s revenues through digital

The Financial Times has become a success story for digital news. Since its website launch in 1995, FT.com has amassed over 500,000 digital subscribers, additional to 720,000 print and ePaper subscriptions. Digital users now represent 70% of the FT’s total paying audience.

Mobile focus

Mobile is the fastest growing channel, driving already half of FT’s traffic. Because the FT is accessed digitally in various ways, increasing page load speed, especially on mobile, is a priority.

“If you can speed up the site by one second you are actually putting money in your pocket.”, says Cait O’Riordan, Chief Product and Information Officer.

What the Financial Times really cares about is reader engagement

Engaging readers and loading speed go line in line. When half of the traffic is driven by mobile devices, increasing that initial engagement is paramount. The Financial Times wants readers to come back more often and assigns each user an engagement score which can be tracked and measured. The scoring increases when users sign up and subscribe. This data-centric approach is part of the FT’s success.

“We know that if someone goes from a non MyFT user to a MyFT user their engagement score will go up by 35 percent. It’s not just that it makes the content more personally relevant, it is that they have invested slightly in the FT.”

Read more on this digital success case here.

telegraphEngagement of readers is key!

The UK’s Daily Telegraph is focusing on selling subscriptions of “quintessentially Telegraph” content such as opinion and analysis pieces, rather than generic news that is available elsewhere for free. This new strategy replaces the Telegraph’s metered paywall with a hard paywall for premium content. Telegraph Premium also encourages already logged-in users, who already voluntarily share their data, to stay logged in and sign up.

Read more here.