Wechat Launched Pay to Read: Monetize your Content

Wechat: China king of UGC (users generated content)?

WeChat, the most popular and used app in China, is the information hub of the country. With more than a billion monthly users and the tens of millions of blog posts published every month, this app seems to be the perfect platform to share your content… as long as you make sure to be interesting enough for people to actually follow your account.

How to reach your target through WeChat?

Read as well: Wechat Marketing Guide

  • Create an official account

This is the very first step into your WeChat adventure. Without an official account, you won’t be able to post WeChat integrated posts. You’ll still have the possibility to share a non-WeChat link with your contact. Opening a non-WeChat (Tencent) link in WeChat is a pain in the A**. You can create a subscription, a service account, or both to spread your marketing content to your targeted audience. It is the best way for you to set up a strong fanbase and share texts, videos, images, and so on…

  • Create/Be present in Wechat groups

Another way to promote your products and what’s new about your company (like events or special sales). Initiating discussion in groups will create an activity around your posts and create a dynamic around it.

wechat group marketing

A good WeChat tool that you can shape as you want for multiple purposes: games, event tickets, and catalog, … Wechat Mini-programs allow you to be creative and original.

  • Launch your in-app store

One efficient feature of WeChat offers the possibility to expand your company’s store on it. Indeed, the creation of a store section within WeChat is possible and is very relevant since people can directly pay with WeChat Pay.

  • Collaborate with WeChat KOLs (Key Opinion Leaders)

Working with influencers for your promotion campaign is also possible on WeChat. The selection of one or several suitable KOLs is the core point of your operation’s efficiency. Using KOLs lever is a real reliability and visibility gain and is very suitable for the launch of a new product.

How to make money through WeChat?

Is this even possible? Yes, it is since mid-January when WeChat launched its new function paywall feature for official accounts. Even if this market is still a niche business, offering the possibility to propose paid content is a new step for you to make profits in WeChat.

This feature offers the possibility to the content publisher to apply a paywall to its content (some he selects or all of them). Then, the reader must pay to unlock the concerning content and have access to it. Another way for the readers to see the content is to subscribe to the publisher and pay him at a monthly-basis price.

How can the reader pay?

As you may already know, payment methods in China differ from the west: If Apple pay is available, the leaders of the market are Alipay and WeChat Pay.

Knowing that you may have guessed that you must adapt to Chinese people’s habits and lifestyle to do business there and adopt their practices. Alipay has 54% of the online payment market share while WeChat Pay has 40% of it. Adopting this type of payment method is an essential point for you. Even more, if you want to publish paid content in WeChat.

Depending on the mobile user’s OS, the payment methods are different:

  • Android users can use WeChat Pay to get access to paid content
  • On the other hand, iOS users have to pay with Apple’s in-app purchase service.

Because it is still in the trial period, WeChat will not take any cut on the revenues while Apple takes a 30% share as a commission for each transaction.

How much can I sell my content on Wechat?

Content creators can price their content from RMB 1 to RMB 208 (USD 0.15 to USD 30). For example, the first paid WeChat content was an article priced at RMB 1. And guess what? Within 24 hours, more than 5 000 users paid for it!


It’s a good beginning for the new feature and appears to be a promising market.

Why is Wechat Pay to Read Feature an opportunity for content creators?

Numbers speak for themselves: in 2019, articles that were published by the top 500 most popular accounts got about 40 000 views on average. Also, among the 20 million WeChat public accounts, more than 80% of WeChat users are subscribed to at least one of them.

Moreover, the “paying for knowledge” market is booming in China, estimated to reach RMB 23.5 billion in 2020.

How can I concretely offer paid content on WeChat?

Of course, this function is not open to everyone yet and is only available for a selected group of content creators.

There are requirements to publish paid content:

  • Your WeChat account is registered for over 3 months
  • You’ve published at least 3 original articles,
  • You have not violated WeChat’s publication rules
  • etc…;

 The feature will most likely soon open to individual content creators, allowing you to finally be able to monetize your content instantaneously on Wechat. This effort comes as an effort to be more attractive and friendly to brands and content creators as the competition is growing notably with Q&A platforms that have been using pay-to-read for a while and the rise of Toutiao for the group Bytedance also owns the popular Douyin (TikTok).

Bonus: This pay-to-read feature is one among many that Wechat is introducing in order to stay in the competition. One of its latest functions is live streaming. Every single Chinese platform is entering the live streaming game as it is developing fast in every industry.

Level up your Wechat Game

Contact us to get a free consultation and see how you can incorporate Wechat into your marketing effort in China.



  • Hi!
    Great article!
    I have 2 English fiction ebooks listed on Amazon that I’d like to market here, and by here, I mean China where I’m based.
    Covid has done quite a battering on all earning fronts, from business to the education sector.

    Please guide me on how to go about it, thanks.

    • Hello Ray,
      Thank you for contacting us! Our expert will send you an email.

  • Very nice Article marketingtochina Keep it up for your good Work Thanks for sharing information.

  • flora R.

    This feature reminds me of trendy apps here in Spain where you can read the first episode of a story for example or maybe two, and then have to pay to read the rest. I assume that it is enough to catch my attention and makes me want to know more about the rest!
    Your article is really interesting, paying for content with wechatpay is such a good initiative. Being able to have access to leisure content or knowledge, I love the idea!

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