Many Web publishers that are looking for interesting content to feature on their blogs or Web sites will consider interviews of experts in the field of their niche content. The question will often come up regardless of individual who is offering you an interview should be paid a fee for his or her time. In most instances interviewees stand much to gain, including publicity as well as potential free traffic to their own Web sites of interest. Therefore it is advisable to avoid even offering a fee on top of the benefits that will already be received by your time and effort in interviewing the expert of your choice. However in some instances, for example if the expert is much too busy to speak with you or because does not mean additional publicity or traffic from the interview that you are offering, a fee may be requested and may furthermore be appropriate.
If your subject has already agreed to conduct an interview with you and a fee was not requested there is no need to bring it up and you are under no obligation to compensate the subject for an interview. If they fee is requested, you must determine whether the fee is cost-efficient in meeting your objectives. If you are publishing the interview in order to capture more traffic to your website you must come up with a way to calculate how much traffic is worth. If your site is generating revenue from Google AdSense or affiliate banner ads, you can take the income from each of your sources and dividend that by the number of people that visit your site for any given amount of time. This figure is a concrete number that offers a value to every website visitor that you receive on your website. To determine if a fee is affordable or appropriate for your website, create a variable that corresponds to the frequency that you publish. If you publish once a week, your variable would be seven. If you publish once a day, your variable would be one. If you publish three times a day, your variable would be one-third.
Now calculate the number of unique visitors that visit your website in the number of days equal to your variable. For example, if you publish once a week, your variable is seven, and you need to calculate the number of unique visits that your website receives in any seven day period. If your traffic fluctuates tremendously, you will need to come up with an average.
The second part of this calculation is to generate dollar amounts for each revenue stream that exists on your website that you generate in the number of days equal to your variable. Continuing with our example, say we only feature Google AdSense ads in our example site. Simply take your revenue from Google AdSense for the last seven days. Again, if you're traffic fluctuates you will need to produce an average.
If you take the total of all the revenue figures that correspond with each revenue stream and you divide that by the total number of unique visitors that visit your website, and our example 7 days, you will have calculated the value of each unique visit. This is good information to retain for a multitude of reasons.
If you compare your website to standards in the publishing industry most major magazines and newspapers maintain strict policies against paying for interviews. Many established journalists will go so far as to say that paying for an interview or even a quote is unethical. The same however applies to the flipside. Many publications have strict policies against accepting payment for features or editorials. With many paid-for-blog networks, these questions become rather difficult to answer.
However the one answer that you do need to produce may be a little easier to come up with. Will the paid interview contribute substantially to your Web content? Is it possible to obtain similar information or similar results through a free source, or possibly another expert who is willing to be interviewed for free? Even your goal should be to provide the best content possible, and if you have monetary goals in conjunction with this content, these questions should be fairly easy to answer.