RebelMouse Talk to Us
The Subscription Model Is Taking off and Competition Has Never Been Steeper

The post-pandemic user landscape is still ripe for subscription revenue

You can get a subscription for everything these days. Whether it’s a cheese-of-the-month club or annual access to read your favorite content, the subscription-based model has continued to gain steam in recent years. In fact, the market for digital subscriptions is valued at $650 billion according to a new report from Lineup, a subscription management solution.

The power of the subscription model has been growing since even before the COVID-19 crisis began, and isn’t showing any signs of slowing as we enter a post-pandemic landscape. According to What’s New in Publishing, Gannett reported a 46% year-over-year increase in digital subscriptions in November 2021, putting them at 1.5M total subscribers. Hearst grew its digital subscriptions by 50% in 2021.

But subscriptions aren’t just for big name publishers. Users in 2022 are ready to pay up for legacy names and new media companies alike, as long as it’s for an experience that’s beneficial to them, reliable, and free of the clutter that can come from third-party platforms. Speaking of platforms, even TikTok and Instagram have started to gauge their audiences’ temperature on subscription experiences. So, the competition has never been steeper for publishers looking to build a subscriber base. Unfortunately, launching a simple paywall may not be enough.


According to Lineup’s report, “as available options continue to increase, so does demand for flexibility. The media companies that understand their audiences’ needs and craft highly personalized packages will come out ahead of those that take a one-size-fits-all approach to their subscription strategy.”

So how do you create a well-rounded approach to subscriptions when some industries in the subscription market are reporting a 30% customer churn?

Diversify Your Options

Creating a personalized content experience is of course key for a successful subscription model. However, that content has to be supported by the right technology to have a lasting impact. As mentioned before, there isn’t a one-stop solution for generating ROI from subscriptions. That’s why it’s important to diversify your revenue streams to see what works best for your audiences. On RebelMouse, we help you build a subscription experience that's designed for both the modern user who wants an optimized site experience and the modern publisher who relies on paywall revenue to survive.

RebelMouse's subscription features are customizable and easily support:

  • Free Trials: Create one-day, weekly, or monthly subscription plans.
  • Coupon Codes: Use promotional codes to give access to strategic partners and complement B2B deals.
  • B2B Subscriptions: Use email matching to sell access to companies.
  • Testing Powered by Data: We have a sophisticated suite of A/B testing tools — complete with Google Analytics integrations — that give you the ability to test what works, what doesn't, and how to better cater to your readers' needs.

RebelMouse's Paywall API is available to developers to make it easy to manage subscriptions. Access to paid content is managed via subscriptions attached to email qualifiers. Click here for more information on our Paywall API.

Sites powered by RebelMouse are experiencing enormous success thanks to our subscription strategies, including the Italian newspaper La Verità. While publishers on other platforms typically see a decrease in audience when they implement a paywall, in their time leveraging RebelMouse’s paywall strategy, La Verità has experienced continued, unprecedented growth. They are now one of the highest-growth media properties in Italy, and they've enjoyed significant revenue growth thanks to our paywall tools.

La Verit\u00e0's superior site performance using RebelMouse's paywall tools. La Verità's superior site performance using RebelMouse's paywall tools.

Click here to read more about RebelMouse’s subscription model.

Nurture Your Subscribers

Creating resonating content that’s supported by the right subscription technology only gets you half of the way there. Once you’ve made it to this mile marker, it becomes critical to nurture your subscriber base to encourage customer loyalty.

In fact, recent data from Chartbeat found that in Northern Europe, 40% of traffic in the first quarter of 2022 came from what Chartbeat calls “loyal readers.” A loyal reader is someone that returns to your site at least 50% of the days in a two-week period.

If loyalty can account for almost half of your traffic, it’s important to invest in technology that focuses on the full user journey beyond just a subscription signup. From high-performance standards to industry-leading SEO features, RebelMouse has innovative ways to support customer loyalty for your customer base. Click here to learn more.

Create a Modern Subscription Plan on RebelMouse

If you’re looking to start a subscription model for your site, request a proposal today and we’ll help you create a holistic revenue plan that’s centered around personalization and loyalty.

What Is RebelMouse?
Request a Proposal
subscription model for publishers
Content Strategy

In 2022, Publishers Take Back Control With Subscription Success

Users are ready to pay for content that delivers

The Rise of the Mature User

It's been a long and winding path, but in 2022 the subscription model continues its upward trajectory as a top revenue strategy for publishers of all sizes. The tug of war between platforms and publishers reached its peak in the last few years of the previous decade, leaving users desperate for a modern user experience that's clear of any clutter from the duopoly that is Google and Facebook. This is why intelligent paywall models are a top choice for users looking to consume content right from the source. When done correctly, the strategy can work for any type of media. The New York Times, a frequent showpiece example of the power of paywalls, is constantly reporting record-busting subscription numbers, with 7.6 million digital subscriptions in 2021.

And it all makes perfect sense. The subscription model eliminates the middleman — such as the platforms — so readers get the experience and content they want, and publishers get the cash they need.

Keep reading... Show less
People on a train station
Rebel Insights

RebelMouse Q1 2021 Platform Updates

Speed, performance, and Core Web Vitals enhancements

Click here to read our Q2 2021 platform performance updates!

At RebelMouse, we pour our souls into making sure that our platform is always the most modern, high-performance CMS on the market. In fact, we invested over $100,000 worth of hours into our platform in Q1 2021 alone. This has resulted in updates and performance enhancements that publishers would have to pay for on their own to make happen on any other platform, such as WordPress. We're proud to be at a level of scale where we can invest this way into our platform, and we will continue to invest at this rate every quarter moving forward just as we have in the past.

Here are the major updates that we've added to the platform in Q1.

Keep reading... Show less
Interested in a Free Website Health Check?Check Your
Website's Health
Get Your Free Analysis Now
INP and Core Web Vitals what you need to know
Rebel Insights

INP and Core Web Vitals: What You Need to Know

In this article:

What Are Core Web Vitals?

What Is INP?

Why INP Is More Challenging Than FID

How to Improve Your INP Score

INP Debugger

Front-End Solution

Get Ahead of the Rest of the Web

It’s been more than two years since Google let the world know that its Core Web Vitals metrics are the new benchmark for measuring a site's performance in its search results. Developers have since felt the impact of how their publishing platforms stack up against the new standard. Important decisions around the architecture of your site can now make or break your site's performance in the eyes of Google.

Now, the definition of what makes up Core Web Vitals could change. A new responsiveness metric called Interaction to Next Paint (INP) may replace First Input Delay (FID). During Google’s I/O conference in May 2022, it was announced that the INP metric was still in its experimental phase. You can watch the announcement here:

Keep reading... Show less
Sign Up for RebelMouse’s Free Website Health Check
Rebel Insights

Sign Up for RebelMouse’s Free Website Health Check

Most publishers are bogged down with day-to-day content strategy and creation, which usually means their technology suffers. That translates into poor search rankings, traffic dips, and loss of revenue.

Even so, the idea of replatforming to a new CMS, migrating your data, and overhauling your site’s architecture can sometimes feel more daunting than simply fixing the issues your website currently faces. But the stumbling block here is that most publishers aren’t even sure what the exact problems are with their current site.

That’s why RebelMouse offers a free website health check. This comprehensive audit will help you make a data-backed decision on what the best and most cost-effective next steps are to brighten your site’s future. Here’s what our health check includes:

Keep reading... Show less
Build on a Better PlatformReady to See More?
Request a Proposal