Digital Magazines: Importance, Types, and Benefits

Posted by Christina James on November 8th, 2021

The magic wand of technology has left no corner untouched to make our lives simpler and easier. Whether it be on the professional front or in our personal lives, the touch of technology has truly transformed even the smallest things we do. Take reading, for instance. Gone are the days when paper books were the only medium for reading. Today, digital books have gained much popularity giving a diverse reading experience to people. You can now read on tablets, mobile phones, or desktops- and you can even listen to the narration of books using audiobooks! Amazing, right? 

In this article, we are going to explore one of the most widely used forms of digital reading- digital magazines. They go by many games like online magazines, webzines, magazine apps, digital editions, etc. So, let\'s see what they are. 

What are Digital Magazines? 

The simplest way to describe digital magazines is \"similar to a print magazine but consumed electronically by readers\". The characteristics of a digital magazine, like the magazine structure and editorial approach, is just like a traditional print magazine. The major difference is that digital magazines use digital publishing, enabling it to be available on electronic devices. 

Digital magazines have plenty of advantages like broader reach, lesser cost, and increased revenue. In addition, the relative ease of production and distribution has encouraged many people to venture into digital magazine development. Many argue that it is the future of reading, considering the extent to which people have integrated technology into their lives. 

What are the Different Types of Digital Magazines

Digital is a wide spectrum with several technologies and methods. As a result, digital magazines can be created in different formats. Some publishers may prefer one option, whereas others may find another option better for them. It all depends on the needs and goals of the magazine owners, really! So, what are the different types of digital magazines, let us take a look. 

PDF Magazines

PDF magazines are probably the simplest and cheapest form of digital magazines. It does not require a lot of effort, and things are further simplified if you already have a printed magazine. In that case, you only need to replicate the printed edition and export it to PDF. Although it is a convenient and beginner-friendly option for creating a digital magazine, it has some disadvantages, such as:

  • Not user-friendly for mobile devices as it requires zooming and panning for reading

  • Requires download and storage

  • Difficult to control distribution as a user after downloading the magazine may pass it to others 

  • Not possible to measure accurate impact due to unclear data on exact users and their interaction patterns

Flipbook magazines are an evolved form of PDF magazines where the PDF is embedded on websites and can be read with a flip motion, like a paper book.

Mobile App Magazines

With the growing mobile usage and the comfort it brings to people\'s lives, some magazine owners are publishing their magazines as mobile apps. These apps can be downloaded by users from the appropriate app store and will provide an exclusive reading experience. The advantages of digital magazine app development are:

  • Amazing user experience suited for mobile devices

  • Personalized interaction

  • Can include rich multimedia content

  • Convenient and comfortable to use

The typical disadvantage associated with mobile magazine apps is that they are expensive to develop and would also require more time and effort. But their benefits are worth exploring. 

Magazine Subscriptions App

Magazine subscriptions apps are a platform for people to discover and read magazines. You can publish your magazine on such platforms and reach out to a large reader base. Amazon\'s Kindle Newsstand, Readly, Magzter, etc., are some examples of such platforms. This is one of the common options chosen by people who cannot afford to invest in developing their own magazine app. 

It is a viable option but has certain disadvantages like strong competition with thousands of other magazines in the same platform, restricting content to adhere to platform guidelines and investment in terms of membership fees. 

HTML5 Magazines

HTML5 magazines are digital magazines built on HTML, CSS, and Javascript technology. So, their greatest advantage is that they work on any web browser. So, whether it is on desktop or on mobile devices, readers can access these magazines and enjoy the same experience. In addition to their responsive nature, their ease of distribution also makes them a good option for people looking for budget-friendly digital magazine development. 

Benefits of Publishing Your Digital Magazine as an App

Of all the different types of digital magazines we discussed above, mobile apps are the most relevant and popular approach in today\'s times. That is to be expected, considering how far we have become dependent on mobile apps to carry out different activities. Well, there aren\'t any demerits regarding quality and functionality to the approach either. And as to the cost of development, while it is slightly on the higher side, the benefits of digital magazine apps are worth the investment. 

Here are five benefits of publishing your digital magazine as an app. 

Easy to Distribute

For a magazine to prosper, one of the first things it must have is a vast and loyal reader base. How many people a magazine can reach out to depends on how extensive its distribution capabilities are. And for print magazines, it is a challenge. A nationwide or global circulation of a magazine involves a large sum of money for printing, shipping, circulation, etc. For digital magazine apps, these aspects are not challenging. 

It is easy to target readers at any location with digital magazine apps. Readers from anywhere can just download the app from the corresponding app store, thus making the distribution process fairly simple. 

Save Paper

Today\'s generation is highly concerned about the environmental aspects of paper production. Imagine how many tonnes of paper is used for printing magazines. And if the same is switched to a digital magazine app, which gives the same experience as that of a print magazine, isn\'t that a great thing? It is sustainable and environment friendly. Further, paper production is a costly process, and that cost can be rerouted to creating more aspects in the app. 

Additional Revenue Sources

Most mobile app owners implement additional methods for increasing revenue within their mobile apps. A common approach is advertising. By displaying ads in the digital magazine app, magazine owners can create some extra income. Other mobile app monetization methods, like subscriptions, affiliate marketing, etc., are also implemented by digital magazine developers. 

Even the famous New York Times uses advertising on their web and mobile apps to increase their revenue. 

Greater User Retention

If a user has your digital magazine app installed on their phone, every time a new issue is released, they are notified through push notifications. That serves as an encouragement for users to interact more with the e-magazine. It helps in improving user retention. Moreover, digital magazine apps are more accessible and convenient as they have features like narration, offline reading, etc. All this contributes to creating a loyal reader base. 

Wrapping Up

As digital magazine apps are gaining more popularity, new opportunities are opening up in the industry. It has the potential for completely revolutionizing digital publishing. Though print magazines are still in use, with digital magazines, it is possible to increase business in the most efficient ways. A new and exciting world does seem to be open for magazine readers worldwide!

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Christina James

About the Author

Christina James
Joined: November 28th, 2019
Articles Posted: 34

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