You may have noticed a few weeks ago that we decided to gate CEPro.com.
For those that are unaware, gating a website means that there is some sort of barrier of entry before you can read the content. A number of popular sites including the New York Times and Wired already engage in this practice. Some of you may be worried that this means that CE Pro will begin charging for access, or else gathering your data in order to sell it to third parties.
Let us be very clear – that is absolutely not the case.
CE Pro will never expect our audience to pay in order to access our website. We will never take the information received at the site gate to sell to third parties. We are using the information strictly internally.
All we’re asking for is a name and email address once a year. This helps us in a number of ways.
We are a targeted website for industry professionals, and it’s not always easy to identify integrators from the general population. A gate will allow us to better understand who is coming to our site and becoming members of our audience. We do a large amount of marketing in order to reach integrators, and by virtue we end up with many people visiting our site that don’t necessarily fit our audience.
Gating allows us to identify the right people and bring them into the fold.
Gating the website also allows us to better stay in touch with that core audience. When you give us your name and email address you will be added to a nurturing program that will deliver things like newsletters and email blasts to your inbox. It is extremely easy to opt out of these emails by clicking the “unsubscribe” button. However, we hope that legacy members and new members alike find the benefit in curated content delivered to them from time to time.
Gating and gathering names and email addresses will allow us to better stay in touch and deliver featured content to you in an easily accessible way.
In fact, the gate will be an extremely minor inconvenience to our regular readers. Any given user will be allowed to view one article, and after that we will require a name and email address in order to view the rest of the site.
We will only ask for your name and email address once per IP address per year. This means we’ll only ask for your name email address annually, or if you access the site from a different computer/network (in which case we won’t be able to tell it’s you until we get the name and email address).
Ultimately, we’re implementing gating so that we can better identify, understand, and serve our audience.
We get it. All of us at CE Pro are audience members for a number of websites – some gated, some not. Going from offering something for free to introducing some barrier of entry – minimal as it might be – is a big deal.
There will be a vocal minority, perhaps some of our competitors, that try to spin this move into something nefarious. We want to be upfront with our audience by writing this article and explaining our actual motives in gating our content – using current marketing practices to better serve our audience. That’s all.
We know this minor inconvenience will lead to better content for CE Pro, and a better relationship with our core audience. We hope that we’ve served you well enough with great content and industry news, and that you’ll feel comfortable sharing your names and email addresses with us in order to continue to receive this content.
If you have any questions, concerns, or criticisms, feel free to reach out to Jason Knott directly at email@example.com. Thank you for being members of our audience.