“Content is king”. How many times have you heard that before?
The value of good content is rising as more and more posts and articles are strewn across the web. Nowadays you can easily fill your site with content for your visitors to read and enjoy, however finding valuable content that will turn one-time visitors into subscribers and followers of your blog/website is another story.
When you do find valuable content to provide, you want to make the most of it. You know that your followers will come back to your blog for the simple reason that your content is better than others’.
So why not make use of that and protect this great content? One way of doing this is by setting up a digital wallet service. You can do this via subscriptions, limited-access passes, or even “a la carte” for a price of your choice.
One of the easiest and most efficient ways of doing this is by using CoinTent.
Let’s take a look at what CoinTent has to offer, how to create a publisher’s account to start selling your valuable content, and how to actually put it to good use and manage your new form of revenue.
With CoinTent and its WordPress plugin you are able to not only choose which content to sell, but also how to sell it and for how much. The plugin will work by blocking access to the content you choose and displaying a button that allows users to pay for the hidden content.
In order to purchase the hidden content you will need a CoinTent account (which is super easy to set up), after which you can fund your wallet and use those funds to pay for the desired content.
There are a number of ways to make content available for sale. You first select which categories to apply the paywall system to, then you can choose between using a word-count, the WordPress more tag, or the CoinTent shortcodes.
You’ll also be provided with a CoinTent account dashboard (below) from where you can track the progress of your sales, set the pricing, choose your settings, and more.
Now that we’ve briefly covered what CoinTent can do, let’s see what it’s like to set up and start making use of.
Setting up your requirements on the CoinTent dashboard is very easy and you can have it set up in just a few minutes.
Moving to your actual website, once you’ve downloaded the plugin from the WordPress plugin repository you simply need to install and activate it like any other WordPress plugin.
The first thing you’re provided with is a welcome screen that explains the three main steps to getting CoinTent ready for action. Firstly you need to enter the Published ID and Token that you can find in the CoinTent dashboard.
Once that’s done it’s all about setting your preferred requirements for how to sell your content, and which content to sell in the first place. These settings are split into 5 further sections that you can see below.
The Paywall Settings lets you choose which content to place behind a paywall. You can either choose the categories to apply the paywall system to, and which you want to definitely exclude, or you can use the shortcode system instead.
The Pricing & Subscriptions section simply explains that any content chosen to be behind the paywall is automatically available for micropayments, and that subscriptions can be set up from the publisher dashboard we saw earlier.
Preview Settings is where you’ll find the 3 methods of creating a preview. These are the word count, the more tag and the shortcode. Preview in this case refers to the content displayed before a purchase is made to unlock the rest of it. Word count allows you to choose the amount of content displayed, while the more tag and shortcodes can be set from within the actual posts. Out of these three, the shortcode is given top priority, followed by the more tag and word count.
The Widget & Popup Customization section is where you can set your own personal messages for the purchase options that will be visible on your site. You can add any title and sub-title of your choice as well as a unique header logo and colour.
Lastly you’ll find the Advanced Settings section that is there for the more technical user. This will allow you to make customizations to CoinTent as well as to configure the plugin for use in a development environment.
Once you’ve set the settings you need and set up which content should be behind a paywall, it’s time to see what it looks like on the front-end of your site.
As you can see in the images below, the post will be cut off at the point that you chose, and in its place will be the purchase options that you would have set. These will depend on whether you have a subscription option set up or not alongside the purchase option.
At this point the users will be asked to create a CoinTent account, unless they already have one. If not, it’s a very simple process that can be done from within the popup, while if they have an account they simply need to log in.
Once that’s done it’s just a question of funding their account and completing the purchase of the desired content.
Just like that you have created a paywall system for your top quality posts and created a new source of income for your website/blog.
Documentation & Support
The documentation provided is great and it explains everything that’s needed to set CoinTent up. The FAQs are also very useful, and together with the documentation are more than enough for anyone to get started.
The support provided by the CoinTent team is also great. I contacted the team over a small issue I was having while using the plugin and their response time and replies were very pleasing. It’s always good to know that there’s a team willing to help you out with any issues you come across, especially in a situation where it involves earning an income.
Pricing & Payments
Pricing for CoinTent is simple. If you sell subscription access, then CoinTent charges $0.30 + 5% of the transaction to manage the payment processing and content restriction. As payment processors typically charge $0.30 + 3% of transactions for just payment processing (and may charge additional fees), this is comparable to what you’d have to pay for only payment processing services without content restriction.
If you sell pay-per-view access, you’ll be charged a percentage base fee for any transaction under $2.00, as micropayments are typically more expensive. So you’ll keep 80% of all revenues via one-time purchases made through the CoinTent widget on your site:
“CoinTent remits to publishers 80% of all money collected on their content. 15% covers credit card fees, fraud protection, security. The last 5% is our fee.”
This pricing would only kick into effect for very small payments of under $2.00.
Conclusions & Recommendations
If you’re looking to create a paywall system for your website and to offer your readers the chance of accessing great content at a minimal price, then CoinTent should be high on your list of options.
The publisher dashboard and WordPress plugin combination provide you with plenty of statistics to help you keep track of your sales while also giving you more than enough options to setup your paywall system according to your needs and requirements.
All in all it’s easy to set up and use, both from the publisher and reader’s point of view. The plugin’s back-end takes only a short while to setup, while funding your account and paying for content is a simple process that won’t push your readers away.
What are your thoughts on paywall systems for quality content? Have you used CoinTent or any similar plugins before? We’d love to know your opinions through the comments below.