Business Models of Content Providers

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In order to better understand how content providers position themselves in the online value chain and profit from their websites, it is crucial to comprehend their sources of revenue. Insight into the available business models is needed in order to be able to assess situations under which different forms of online advertising are more or less efficient, which will provide the framework for answering the second research question.

Gallaugher et al. list seven revenue streams for online content providers:

1. Online advertising

2. Subscription fee for online content

3. Online ordering of print publication

4. Syndication / revenue sharing with online services

5. Per-unit charges for online content

6. Online sale of non-content merchandise and services

7. Affiliate marketing (Gallaugher et al., 2001)

The cited article however only dealt with magazine and newspaper companies, thus some of revenue streams are not applicable generally. A better understanding may provide model is presented by Strauss et al., who have categorized business models applicable to cybermediaries into following categories:

■ Brokerage model

■ Online retailing (Strauss et al., 2006:302-308)

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