Guardian to test in-app purchasing

MWL 2012: The Guardian is introducing in-app payment to some of its mobile and tablet products as it looks for new revenue streams in the digital space.

Guardian

Steve Wing, the Guardian News and Media’s business director of mobile, told the Digital Marketing Conference audience at Marketing Week Live that the company is exploring the payment model “wherever it has something to package up and sell”.

This could include some of its vertical products like crosswords and photographs, which already have their own stand-alone apps but could be built in to other wider services, he added.

Wing said the Guardian aims to be “best in breed” with its app products – which does not necessarily mean being first to market – and it always ensures its apps can be customized. This is why, he continues, it is also set to launch a number of new vertical products similar to its Eyewitness photography apps.

He also used his presentation to announce the Guardian’s latest figures for its mobile website. M.guardian.co.uk attracts 11.1 million monthly unique browsers, 3.3 million of those from the US.

The publisher recently opened offices in the US to tap into its growing readership in the region and is working on tailoring some of its content to be more US-centric.

Wing said the introduction of mobile products has changed its editorial schedule, which has led to the introduction of mobile-specific sales, journalist and production teams

“We used to have a digital audience that was 9-6 Monday to Friday, now it’s 24 hours a day and all the while this is adding to our overall traffic,” he said.

“It’s become less of a technology view and more of an audience view; we look at what someone needs at 10pm at night in bed and we schedule for the weekends so we look at what the audience needs rather than technology leading our decisions.”

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