Google has just opened the Google Consumer Surveys publisher network; a new way for website owners to make some extra revenue and for Google to collect information.
How it Works
For websites that sign up, their visitors will see a survey appear in front of the content which they have to interact with before they can access the content. In this regard it is similar to a paywall e.g. the Wall Street Journal’s subscription model. The one difference that visitors don’t have to pull out their credit card to read the content.
The announcement states that website site owners can choose where and how often survey prompts appear as well as how much content to make available. Website owners earn 5 cents per question answered while survey creators earn 10 cents per survey, meaning a 50/50 revenue sharing.
How to Sign Up
A website owner who signs up to be a part of Google’s Consumer Surveys publisher network must
Currently, through the Google Consumers Survey page, US, UK, and Canadian publishers are being accepted for the program. More countries will be added in the following months.
What We Think
For the consumer
The obvious obstacle to Google’s Consumer survey is the intrusiveness it may impose on the visitors, potentially turning them off from the site. However the survey seems to present itself in the most convenient way possible, with one or two easy multiple choice questions. Even better visitors who are still uncomfortable with sharing personal information can opt-out of filling the survey. This is one of the smartest ways of breaking down resistance to the survey, by offering the freedom to make the survey just another click to access the content.
For the website owner
If the visitor’s experience is not negatively affected by a survey, then the benefit to the website owner would be another source of revenue (websites that have a large amount of traffic would make a killing). More so if consumer surveys are profitable enough, this may prompt websites to remove more intrusive ways of generating revenue i.e. ads or subscription paywalls, in order to provide a better visitor experience.
If the visitor and site owner’s benefits, then Google benefits. Visitors more willing to do the survey that more sites are willing to sign up for offers a great avenue for Google to collect data in a way that users won’t feel they have been spied upon.
It’s a win, win, win for everybody, consumers are not too badly bothered to do a survey, site owners now have an additional source of income, and Google has another way to gather information about website viewers. As an idea it’s a pretty smart one on Google’s part.
If you are interested in the world of Google and digital marketing, check out our Marketer’s Guide to SEO!