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Pacific Standard’s Web Traffic Hits New High

Digital publishing news for January 29, 2014

Columbia Journalism Review has an in-depth profile on the Pacific Standard. Sarah Laskow writes, “Pacific Standard has had an exciting January. It’s been the magazine’s biggest traffic month ever, on track to hit 1.25 million uniques. Half of those people came to read two very different stories, one on online harassment, the other on artisanal toast and schizoaffective disorder, the success of which is all the more gratifying for a small shop located on the edge of the media world—Santa Barbara, CA.”

It has been a slow process for Pacific Standard to build its web traffic. The publication focused on content and over time the audience grew. Laskow adds, “There are regularly seven new stories daily, and the online production is organized, Atlantic-like, around columnists rather than blogs. The website’s already been redesigned once since the relaunch. The site is better set up for social media than it was a few years ago: There’s not Web content and magazine content, just units of words that can be circulated.”

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Canadian Newspaper Paywall Review

The Canadian Journalism project has posted a review on how successful paywalls and tablet apps have been for Canadian Newspapers. Tamara Baluja writes about tablet apps, “La Presse: Its tablet publication has been downloaded to 400,000 tablets with 120,000 daily readers since its launch in September 2013. (The newspaper invested $40 million in the app over the course of two years, which is offered free of charge).” Baluja also writes about The Globe and Mail’s paywall, “110,000 people have signed up for Globe Unlimited, of which half are digital-only subscribers (i.e., they don’t have a print subscription that entitles them to free online access). Roughly 75 per cent of readers who are converting to digital subscriptions are coming to the site for Report on Business content.”

Bon Appétit’s Publisher Takes Top Honor

Pamela Drucker Mann has been named Conde Nast’s publisher of the year. Ad Week’s Lucia Moses writes, “The vp and publisher was seen as a shoo-in for the award; a first-time publisher when she was given the Epicurean title in 2011, she finished 2013 with a 22.3 percent increase in ad pages, making Bon App the company’s foremost brand in ad page, ad revenue, ad profit and ad profit margin growth.”

Mashable Ditches Editor in Chief

The New York Post is reporting that Mashable has eliminated the editor in chief position. Keith J. Kelly writes, “In the first big moves at Mashable since it took on $13.3 million in venture financing earlier this month, Chief Content Officer Jim Roberts is shaking up the ranks. The job of editor-in-chief, held by Lance Ulanoff, has been eliminated. Ulanoff will now be chief correspondent and editor-at-large.” The reasoning behind the move was to get Ulanoff reporting on more stories and should not be seen as a demotion.

Have You Been Penalized?

There’s a new web tool available that can help you determine if you’ve been penalized by Google. It’s called the Website Penalty Indicator. The tool gathers organic search data about the website you submit and matches up past Google search algorithm updates. You’ll then be able to see the correlation between the algorithm updates and a dip in organic search traffic.

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