Wanna annoy your readers away? Force them to turn off ad blockers

It’s officially 2020 and I find it baffling to see websites that literally force readers to turn off ad-blockers or sign in and give away personal information before being able to read content that may not even require a subscription. Take Forbes and BusinessInsider as examples. Here is what you’ll be greeted with when arriving at a Forbes article

On BusinessInsider

There are sites that require readers to subscribe before consuming content such as The Information or Washington Post. That’s fair game. When readers subscribe, the policy brings in immediate revenue. Some prominent publishers such as Bloomberg offer a trial in the form of a few articles or a significant discount before the actual commitment. With ads, the most common result of forcing an ad-block turn-off is just views. The downside is that the audience is annoyed. We are demanding consumers. Even one more unnecessary click can affect our experience with a brand or a website. When they don’t visit, websites risk not being able to show the sponsored content.

The Internet brings frictionless access to information. Websites will re-distribute your content, if it is good, in one way or another. Asking the audience to subscribe is a risk worth taking. Forcing the audience to turn off adblocks for some views isn’t, in my opinion.

CNBC provides a respectable example of how to ask audience to turn off adblocks while giving them an option to continue on