Edition – The Key to Subscription Success

20 May 2021
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Lucy Penn

Sales & Marketing Director


We’ve been providing ePapers to publishers across the globe for over 15 years now, so we are fully aware of their value and work closely with our global client base to ensure that our platform is the most flexible on the market.

Traditionally, a ‘digital edition’ is a print-replica edition, created from an existing PDF file, and viewable across the web or within an app. Its purpose? To enable readers to consume an exact copy of their favourite newspaper or magazine digitally. As the digital evolution continues and reading habits continue to shift to digital platforms, the ePaper has played a key role in enabling publishers to facilitate a shift from print to digital. According to Mather Economics, digital newspaper subscriptions will exceed print by 2027, perhaps even earlier. It’s therefore crucial that publishers not only offer their readers a great edition product, but that they also have a subscription strategy in place that will help to make up for print losses, whilst driving an increased digital revenue.

There’s often a perception that the ePaper is only used by an older demographic, but recent data shows this is changing. We’ve recently launched a new edition app for The Hindu Group and they revealed, “Our ePaper readers are very young; 65% of them are below 35 and 80% below 45years of age. They expect nothing short of a great user experience when they consume an iconic newspaper like The Hindu”. Whilst another study* suggested that younger readers prefer the flexibility of the ePaper over the traditional print product, “But the advantages of the digital version outweigh the rest: Flexibility and availability at all times are the main criteria, due to which 67 percent of all under 30-year-olds prefer the e-paper”.

Key to the success of any edition strategy and encouraging readers to subscribe, is driving engagement, creating value, and managing churn. By making sure your edition product is something that readers visit each day – for the great content, the seamless user experience, interactive puzzles – will help to drive that daily habit which is so crucial for retention.

Our Edition platform is extremely flexible, enabling you to create 3 different types of edition, whilst giving you the option to combine it with a live news feed as The Atlanta Journal-Constitution has recently done.

Print-Replica Edition: Offer an exact replica of your print edition digitally, across the web or within a native app.

Digital-Only Edition: Create a ‘print-like’ edition, using feeds and HTML templates to mimic the look and feel or a print edition.

Article-Flow Edition: Enable readers to navigate editions article-by-article. Go from the front page into article views for the whole edition. This can be presented alongside the print-replica edition or as an alternative digital-only edition.

Another clear advantage of a digital edition over a printed edition is that for the first time a publisher can understand how long readers are consuming content, which content they’re consuming, and much more. This enables newsrooms to harness information to create editions that encourage more regular visits and tailored reader experiences. Our platform is integrated with Firebase as standard, with numerous events tracked to ensure you can generate detailed reader insights.

Subscribers see an ‘Edition’ as a completable, finishable product, which is why it resonates more as a paid-for product. There is a beginning, a middle, and an end, which is when the reader can effectively “put the paper down”. For publishers looking to enhance their edition strategy, transition from print to digital or take a closer look at our market-leading Edition platform email and we’ll put you in touch with the team!