Apple is allow its users to block advertising content for the first with its mobile Safari browser with the release of iOS 9 this fall. Web site publishers expect this to be a game changer to the industry which is already costing publishers, such as sites like this one, more than $20 billion per year.
While it’s only $20 billion this year, it’s expected to double to over $40 billion by end of 2016. Ad blockers today are used on almost 50% of users that surf the Internet in the United States, a number that makes sites almost impossible to generate advertising revenue to keep them running. While we do not block our content from users with Ad Blockers, we do encourage them to whitelist our site as we have a strict ad policy that states you won’t be bombarded on our site with ads.
With advertising revenue continuing to dive, publishers will find new ways and probably much more obstructive ways to provide their content to readers. Some of these new ways could include;
- Paid only subscriptions – more and more well established sites are moving to paid models.
- Blocking users with ad blocks – we are seeing more sites that completely block users which utilize ad blockers on their site.
- Selection content restrictions – while these sites do not completely block users, they do restrict content that they can see if they are using ad blockers. This could be more bandwidth consuming content like videos or it could be more premium content.
While ad blocking is nothing new, it has become MUCH easier to do thanks to free addons for web browsers. With Apple moving to allow mobile ad blocking, it’s only a matter of time before advertising revenue will become too little to operate web sites on any large scale with both the publishers losing and also the content delivery providers like Google.