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Executive Report - By Thomas Baekdal - May 2023

Guide: How to set up and structure a dynamic paywall

Dynamic paywalls have long been a bit of an ugly duckling in the publishing industry. In the early 2010s, most studies that looked at how dynamic paywalls performed told you that they didn't make any real difference compared to regular paywalls, and so weren't worth the extra effort.

Now, however, things have started to change, and some of the larger publishers are now pointing to the dynamic paywalls as being the key element of their subscription strategy. In other words, this ugly duckling has turned into a swan.

So, in this 21-page guide, we are going to look at what we know today about how to set up and structure a dynamic paywall. What is different today than 10 years ago?

A dynamic paywall is not for everyone

Before we start, there are a couple of fundamental factors that you have to keep in mind before venturing down this path.

The first factor, of course, is that a dynamic paywall is very different from every other type of paywall in that it is "dynamic". This might seem like an obvious thing to say, but what that means in practical terms is that a dynamic is constantly changing.

With a regular paywall, you define your price and levels, and then, once set up, you move on to other things. Sure, you still work on refining your messaging, and do A/B tests of your subscription banners etc., but the paywall itself is static.

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What is Baekdal?

Baekdal is a magazine for media professionals, focusing on media analysis, trends, patterns, strategy, journalistic focus, and newsroom optimization. Since 2010, it has helped publishers in more than 40 countries, including big and small publishers like Condé Nast, Bonnier, Schibsted, NRC, and others, as well as companies like Google and Microsoft.

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Thomas Baekdal

Founder, media analyst, author, and publisher. Follow on Twitter

"Thomas Baekdal is one of Scandinavia's most sought-after experts in the digitization of media companies. He has made ​​himself known for his analysis of how digitization has changed the way we consume media."
Swedish business magazine, Resumé


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