Want to do a paywall with no “first click free?” That’s fine with Google, says Josh Cohen. Want to do micropayments? Google’ll be “flexible” in considering support of new business models like this. But if you charge, expect less traffic, and also expect that your competitors will be “ecstatic” to pick up your loss. In the interview, Cohen also repeatedly stressed that publishers are free to deal with Google as they like.
Paywalls & Google Are Not Mutually Exclusive
As publishers increasingly consider putting up paywalls, I also see commentary from others arguing such moves would be dumb, that they’ll be final nail in killing some publications. What’s a confused publisher to do? For me, I find it puzzling publishers believe they’ve to make a choice. They can’ve their paywall AND Google traffic combined, via Google’s First Click Free program. Are there many publishers who simply aren’t aware of this program?
Full Interview: SEL