Years ago, with a click of a button, I installed an ad blocker. Seconds later all ads had disappeared from my screen. Websites loaded quicker, web pages were more reader friendly and the clutter of banners was replaced by white space. Overall my laptop ran quicker and smoother.
I’m not the only one rallying behind ad blockers. According to IAB, 26% of desktop users and 15% of mobile consumers use ad blockers. Ad blocker’s main purpose are to enhance user experience and privacy from ad targeting. However, while ad blocking is hurting all websites, newspapers and magazines may be feeling it the worst. Digital advertising is usually the single biggest source of these publication’s revenue.
Publishers are beginning to take a stand with their readers who employ ad blockers. The Atlantic recently announced to their ad blocking online readers to either disable it, pay up, or leave. This is a risky move as it could easily irritate the user and result in the third option. Not all publications are taking such a strong approach. The Washington Post, New York Times, and Wall Street Journal have prompted their readers who have an ad blocker to kindly shut it off. Some are offering a paid subscription to users that allows reading with the use of ad blockers.
Publishers who are missing out on millions of dollars of potential revenue are trying to find long term solutions to counteract ad blockers. PageFair, Sourcepoint, Secret Media, and Admiral are among the companies currently in the market pitching publishers that technology. While there is no imeediate end in sight, each company is taking different approaches, but all are promising to help recapture lost revenues.