Partner Program Updates, Part II: Stats Edition

We’ve updated the Stats page to clarify how stories make money on Medium

Nouf Aljowaysir
The Medium Blog

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The Medium Partner Program — our revenue share system to pay writers — puts Medium members in control of where their membership dollars go, and gives writers a way to earn money with their writing. We’ve been making changes to our Partner Program to incentivize high-quality writing, and alongside those changes, we’re starting to roll out changes to the Stats pages today. The goal is to help you better understand how your earnings are calculated.

We want your Stats page to be a hub where you can go to learn more about what’s resonating with readers — what are they highlighting and responding to? What are they taking time to read, not just click and bounce? If you’re in the Partner Program, how do readers’ actions translate into earnings? Ultimately, Stats should be a space where you can go to learn and grow as a writer. Knowledge is power, and your earnings shouldn’t feel arbitrary. The changes we’re making today are the first step of many towards bringing more insight and clarity to writers about their stories.

Understand your earnings for all stories

Your stat stories dashboard

The primary factors that go into calculating earnings for stories are now included on your Stats page — and we’ve made changes so that earnings are determined by more meaningful engagement metrics.

  • The Stats homepage will now indicate which stories are memberonly and display their lifetime earnings inline. This helps writers see the impact and total earnings of their writing across their entire lifetime on Medium.
  • A temporary change: Views and reads for individual stories now live on their story detail pages. We’re making some deeper fixes to the Stats homepage; your story views and reads will return in the next couple months.
  • Your list of stories are sortable by claps, responses, and lifetime earnings. This will let you quickly identify stories that have had the most engagement. Claps and responses are two of the signals that factor into our new Partner Program earnings calculations.

A fresher, clearer story stats page

Jack Shepherd’s amazing Goblin story

We refreshed the story stats page to give you a clearer picture about how Medium members and non-members are viewing, reading, and engaging with your stories. This is the best way to understand how Medium Partner Program earnings are calculated, because only activity from Medium members will be factored into earnings.

  • We changed our monthly charts to highlight member vs. non-member activity. Previously, monthly charts compared internal vs. external views and reads–that information is still available at the bottom of the page, broken down by referrer. Now, whenever you see yellow in the charts, you will know that this will contribute to earnings for your member-only stories. Note that this data will also be available for non-member-only stories, and could be a way to gauge when a story would have earning potential by making it a member-only story.
  • The new Stats detail page reflects the new way we calculate reads. As previously announced, on August 1st we updated the definition of a “read.” Now, we count a read when someone views your story for 30 seconds or more–scrolling to the bottom of the story is no longer required. For this reason, you will likely find that the “reads” and “read ratio” numbers are higher on the new Stats pages than they were previously.
  • We use “member read ratio” to adjust your earnings and discourage click-bait and misleading titles. You can find this new important number in the “Reads” section of the Stats detail page. We now adjust earnings for stories based on their member read ratios. This is defined as: “member reads ÷ member views.” Member read ratios will not include logged out and non-member views of your story, since only members can actually read the full story.
  • A new bar chart displays engagement signals: claps, highlights, replies, and follows during the given month. Sparking a discussion or inspiring highlights and claps are signs that it resonated with the reader in a deeper way. When a member follows you after reading your story, you will not only earn a little extra for the follow on that day, but you will also earn a follower bonus whenever they read your member-only stories in the future. Learn more about the follower bonus and other adjustments to earnings here.
Your story stats — reads and engagement graphs

More improvements are in the works

These changes are the first foundational stage of several planned improvements to Stats that we’ll be making in the coming months. We’re hoping they’ll help you better understand how our updated Partner Program calculations translate to your story earnings. We are actively watching and listening to all of your reactions and responses, so please keep sharing your thoughts!

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