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Strategies for selling paid content on newspaper and magazine web sites: an empirical analysis of bundling and splitting of news and magazine articles

Florian Stahl; Wolfgang Maaß
In: International Journal on Media Management, Vol. 6, No. 1-2, Pages 59-66, Taylor & Francis, 2004.


More and more newspaper and magazineWeb sites offer paid content. However, selling information goods at a price higher than the marginal cost means finding a strategy for product or price differentiation. A possible strategy to solve this problem is the bundling of information goods. In this article, we analyze empirically, with quantitative statistic methods, strategies for selling bundled and unbundled content on newspaper and magazineWeb sites. This analysis is based on the theoretical approach of Bakos and Brynjolfsson (1996). The article shows that a cannibalization takes place if the same bundle of information goods is offered in offline (printed) and online (digital) media at the same time. Traditional bundling models work nonetheless in an online media if the online content is rebundled (e.g., as dossiers about a topic), but thereby do not compete with the printed version.