Facebook is testing a new feature that will link your account with the news subscription you have paid for so that you can read paywalled articles without hitting the paywall or required to log in again. The aim is to help news publishers create a better experience for paying subscribers on the social networking platform, reports TechCrunch.
According to the company, subscribers who linked their accounts made an average of 111 percent more article clicks compared to those who weren't part of the test group.
Those subscribers increased their rate of following a publisher from 34 percent to 97 percent. When subscribers link their accounts with news publishers, it will show them more content.
Some newspapers like the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, The Athletic and the Winnipeg Free Press in the US are testing the feature. Calling itself a Fifth Estate, Facebook launched its revamped News tab in the US in June that includes a dedicated local news section among other topics, including breaking news alerts.
Facebook News will soon arrive in the UK, Germany, France, India and Brazil within the next six months to a year, and will pay news publishers to ensure their content is available in the new product.
Facebook has found that over 95 percent of the traffic Facebook News delivers to publishers "is incremental to the traffic they already get from News Feed".
Before a dedicated News tab, Facebook had "Instant Articles" that restricted advertising, subscriptions and the recirculation modules publishers relied on, leading many to abandon the feature. In 2018, the company decided to prioritise friends and family posts in its News Feed, sidelining news outlets.
First Published: IST