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The Building Blocks of Online Magazines

With the right hosting tool, SEO knowledge and a small team of dedicated writers, anyone can start an online magazine. But not anyone can build a profitable business out of it. What are the key challenges lying ahead for those who’d love to have their own online magazine as a business?

Let’s take a look at some of the stepping stones and growth marketing ideas.

How Small-scale online magazines are born

A digital magazine has many of the same characteristics as a print magazine, but uses digital publishing technology so it can be consumed on an electronic device like a computer, tablet, or mobile phone. 

They can be created through a CMS (Content Management System) like WordPress, Wix, Drupal or Joomla like any other site. With a little digital marketing knowledge and web development (no need coding these days) one can get started within a day. Of course, there are many forms of digital magazines that are created through: 

  • epdfs, 
  • HTML5, 
  • Flipbooks  
  • subscription apps

Not all magazine producers are publishers per se. Companies in any number of industries may create magazines to keep their customers up-to-date, inspire them with interesting new content, and keep them engaged with the brand.

A good example of this is Airbnb magazine. Airbnb is not a publishing company per se, but they do produce great magazines to keep customers engaged and enthusiastic about their brands.

The advantages of online magazines for solopreneurs

Let’s ask ourselves some important questions. Is this better than traditional publishing? And what makes a magazine digitally sustain itself financially? 

There are plenty of advantages when it comes to online magazines. While it lacks the physical admiration and the tangible sense of holding paper from a customer point of view, it is quick and easy to create. Nowadays just like most bloggers, online magazines can choose a hosting solution to launch their sites and start building their content from scratch. Content creators can have huge savings on printing costs and eco-friendliness. Staff can be kept on a minimum because of this or even be maintained by a solopreneur who can automate a lot of outreach, content, business development and PR processes. 

Depending on the technology used, digital magazines can have aesthetic and functional benefits as well. For example, they may contain animations, hyperlinks, video, and other dynamic content that traditional magazines do not have or would come at hefty costs.

Are online magazines profitable?

Are most businesses profitable? There is no yes or now answer, but rather depending on the business angle of financing a magazine and milking it for profit.

On the bright side, online magazines can monetize their platforms through more ways than traditional ones. Pay-per-click advertising, paid banner ads, affiliate marketing and link placements are some of the digital marketing methods of monetizing a site. This is something that bloggers for example have been using for ages.

So in a sense, depending on the niche and execution, an online magazine has a better chance of survival than any other physical one.