A Scottish daily newspaper has claimed a year-on-year increase in its paid readership after surpassing 10,000 online paid subscriptions for the first time.
The Herald, Glasgow, has pioneered the use of a metered paywall on its website heraldscotland.com with only a limited number of stories available for free.
Readers are offered the first month’s access for £1 before the price rises to £2.99 for web only and £5.99 for web, mobile and tablet use.
Those who subscribers to The Herald’s print edition get digital access free.
The Newsquest-owned title has announced that online paid subscriptions surpassed the 10,000 mark for the first time in June.
Heraldscotland.com also saw its number of unique monthly visitors to the site jump 50pc to nearly two million from a year earlier.
Herald & Times Group managing director Tim Blott said: “Our early decision to charge for digital content proves that readers are still very much willing to pay for quality journalism and our digital products continue to go from strength to strength in terms of paying readership, audience and advertising revenue growth.
“Our decision to charge for digital content was considered brave two and half years ago, but it’s flattering to see that most other regional newspaper groups are now following our lead. There have been reports elsewhere that trends in digital access are slowing, but that’s certainly not our experience.
“I’ve repeatedly said that we’ll continue to produce a print product for as long as people want it but readership access figures speak for themselves and from this, we see nothing but opportunity.
“I could never have hoped to sell two million copies of our print versions but digitally, if we continue to deliver quality journalism to a worldwide audience, the potential reach and influence of heraldscotland.com is greater than ever before.”
Editor of The Herald, Magnus Llewellin added: “The whole news industry continues to face challenges in capitalising on this growing digital influence, but our first priority is to maintain a quality and appealing product for which people will willingly pay.
“So far, heraldscotland.com remains well ahead of the curve and we continue to grow in confidence alongside our influence in a rapidly evolving landscape.”