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Survey: More than 70% of Netflix Subscribers Unlikely to Switch to Ad-Supported Tier

Stephen Silver

Earlier this year, following its reporting that it lost 200,000 subscribers in the first quarter, Netflix announced that it would do something that it had long resisted doing; launch an ad-supported tier. The company said last month that its plans are still on track, but have been pushed to early 2023, with Microsoft on board as a technology partner.

The move is designed to expand the company’s reach beyond the nearly saturated premium service subscriber pool and to bring in customers who had previously been weary of the higher-priced options. However, the shift in philosophy does run the risk of Netflix cannibalizing its current higher-priced subscriber total. A new survey suggests that the streamer might not have to worry too much about potential defections as one might think.

Whip Media released a new survey this week called “Streaming Satisfaction Report Spotlight on the Ad-Supported Experience,” and in it, current Netflix subscribers were asked how likely they were to switch to a lower cost Netflix tier that came with advertising. To that question, 43% answered “very unlikely to switch” and 29% answered “unlikely to switch.” Only 9% said that they were “likely to switch” and 5% said “very likely to switch.”

“Just prior to fielding the survey, Netflix announced their intention to add a lower cost, advertiser supported subscription option,” Whip Media said in introducing the question. “Our respondents who are currently Netflix subscribers do not appear very interested in switching right now, although we asked the question without the benefit of knowing the price point.”

To date, Netflix has not released many details about the ad-supported tier and has not done any type of marketing or advertising for the new subscription option either. Doing so will likely move the needle in terms of consumer interest in the product, but it remains to be seen by how much.

Analyst Michael Nathanson projected earlier this year that the new tier could increase the company’s revenue by over $1 billion by 2025.

Netflix

Netflix is a subscription video streaming service that includes on-demand access to 3,000+ movies, 2,000+ TV Shows, and Netflix Originals like Stranger Things, Squid Game, The Crown, Tiger King, and Bridgerton. They are constantly adding new shows and movies. Some of their Academy Award-winning exclusives include Roma, Marriage Story, Mank, and Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom.

Netflix offers four plans — on 1 device in SD with their “Basic with Ads” (US$ 6.99) plan, on 1 device in SD with their “Basic” (US$ 9.99) plan, on 2 devices in HD with their “Standard” (US$ 15.49) plan, and 4 devices in up to 4K on their “Premium” (US$ 19.99) plan.

Netflix spends more money on content than any other streaming service meaning that you get more value for the monthly fee.

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