With almost half of the ad blocker users saying they consume stories or videos on news websites, where they may not be exposed to advertising unless they have whitelisted the site, the challenge facing publishers is clear.
Like the average internet user, ad blocker users are more likely to say they consume news through social media than via publishers’ websites. Significantly, though, ad blocker users over index for consuming news across all the channels.
Potentially, specialized news apps are a key opportunity here. They offer a more difficult space in which to block ads, and introduce possibilities for micropayments. While audience figures for news apps are currently lower than websites or social, it’s encouraging that ad blocker users are 25 percent more likely to consume news through them.
Educating users about the value-exchange of free news content is crucial, but perhaps the most effective strategy here may be for publishers to take advantage of app interfaces, whether through social or a publisher’s own, rather than simply blocking access to these users.