Hate having to sign into news sites from Facebook over and over again, even if you’re a subscriber? Facebook is testing an account-linking tool for more seamless news reading on the social network.
Facebook is a reliable source of traffic for many news websites, but one frustrating aspect of clicking into stories for consumers is hitting that paywall sign-in.
Paywalls themselves are not a problem; journalists don’t work for free. What’s aggravating is having to log in again and again, even if you subscribe to the publication.
To solve that issue, and keep you engaged, Facebook is testing an account linking tool that will do just that. Log in once to, say, The New York Times or Washington Post, and Facebook will remember you the next time you click on a link from that publication. Facebook users will also see more stories from the outlets they subscribe to on their News Feeds.
Facebook tested account linking in June, and released the “promising” results of early tests last week. It found that the account-linked test group had an average of 111 percent more article clicks than the control group. Publishers’ Facebook followers, meanwhile, jumped from 34 percent to more than 97 percent among subscribers with linked accounts.
“The number of Atlanta Journal-Constitution subscribers who have linked their accounts has grown significantly since we launched this, as is their engagement with AJC content from Facebook,” Nunzio Michael Lupo, AJC’s senior director for emerging products and experimentation, said in a statement.
“We expect that this will help us to build longer and more frequent engagement with our customers, which will translate to greater retention and customer satisfaction, and maybe a bit less customer support,” said Christian Panson, VP of Digital at Winnipeg Free Press.
Facebook is adding more partners to its test group and working to measure how it affects subscriber retention. It’s also prepping a tool that would let Facebook users proactively link their subscriptions on publisher websites.
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World news – US – Facebook Tests Tool That Keeps Subscribers Signed In to News Sites