The website of Time magazine will launch an e-commerce section produced entirely by staff at suggested-content advertising provider Taboola.
Time is a launch partner of Taboola’s new Turnkey Commerce division, an in-house team producing content including product recommendation articles, how-to guides and tutorials featuring produces and services that can be bought through affiliate links.
This means readers who trust a known publisher will be targeted with Taboola’s e-commerce content, although the company stressed that the products featured would be “thoroughly tested and reviewed”.
Taboola described its e-commerce content in a statement as a “reliable revenue source for publishers to easily activate”.
Taboola said products and services featured in the new Time vertical, and on other publisher sites to come, would be “placed organically” for advertisers “where the editor has independently determined that it is helpful for users, within trusted editorial content and where readers have high intent to purchase”.
Time chief executive Jessica Sibley said: “Audiences come to Time for content they can trust about the decisions that matter most to them. Taboola’s comprehensive data on reader intent and their understanding of the type of content that actually gets readers interested and invested made them the best choice for this new partnership.”
Time already uses other Taboola functions including its Taboola Feed, which suggests sponsored story links underneath a piece of editorial content.
Taboola has been in the e-commerce space since 2021 when it bought Connexity and, in doing so, inherited relationships with major retailers. Taboola chief executive Adam Singolda declared the “future of open web monetisation is e-commerce”. Taboola claims it currently drives more than one million monthly e-commerce transactions with brands like Walmart and Ebay.
Singolda predicted this week that, at an unspecified time in the future, a “third of publishers’ revenue on the open web will be from e-commerce”.
The latest annual survey of news leaders by the Reuters Institute for the Study of Journalism found that 26% of 273 respondents said e-commerce revenue would be important to their publisher in 2023, down from 32% in 2020.
However Taboola shared figures from Emarketer showing e-commerce is a top revenue source for 60% of publishers, and from a Digiday and Skimlinks report last year that found e-commerce content contributes to revenue for 87%.
Singolda said: "Users need a trusted source to give them advice on things they care about as they make important decisions in their life, and this is a huge opportunity for publishers and the open web.
"Taboola Turnkey Commerce gives publishers a big way to tap into e-commerce, by leveraging their trusted editorial voice and creating product recommendation-driven content that keeps readers coming back.
"Time, a must-read destination for millions of people globally that has always shown its commitment to innovation that benefits readers and advertisers, is the ideal launch partner for this new offering.
"Publishers get a turnkey offering that opens up new revenue opportunities by tapping our editorial team and rich history of understanding the types of content that work well for all audiences. Advertisers get more opportunities to get in front of buyers that have already shown high intent in their products, in trusted environments."
Time appointed a new US chief revenue officer, Eric Kelliher, in December while global chief revenue officer Viktoria Degtar began to report directly to chief executive Sibley, who said the publisher planned to "continue to accelerate our digital transformation, drive revenue diversification and set forth a path to sustainability, profitability and growth".
Email email@example.com to point out mistakes, provide story tips or send in a letter for publication on our "Letters Page" blog