What are Affiliate Links?
Affiliates are providers of products and services with which Digitalwelt has partnered up. They usually offer a commission to Digitalwelt as soon as someone makes a purchase on their sites through our links we provide.
Affiliates have been around since the World Wide Web. Affiliates are basically everywhere. Every time you see an advertisement that offers a banner to click on, you can basically speak of affiliates. But also reviews and and listings of top products can be called affiliate links once they include links.
How Does Digitalwelt Earn From Affiliate Links?
Affiliates are mainly used by Digitalwelt in product reviews. For example, when Digitalwelt tests certain products and these perform well in our review, we might try to enter into an affiliate partnership with this provider.
In this case, Digitalwelt receives a commission when somebody purchases that product through our links. But we do not enter into affiliate partnerships with all providers we write reviews about. We explain how we maintain our independence in the next point:
How Does Digitalwelt Maintain Its Independence Despite Affiliate Links?
Digitalwelt is not primarily about affiliates, but about independent reviews and articles. If we like a product (for example VPN Tools, Antivirus Tools), then this product receives a positive rating. Once this is the case, we can also enter into an affiliate partnership with this provider with a clear conscience. In this way we would be rewarded for our efforts, so to speak.
It is also the case that we receive a large number of inquiries from potential affiliate partners who also want their product to be reviewed on our website. Digitalwelt generally does not respond to requests and cannot be influenced by high commissions. Our tests and positioning are therefore independent and we are unaffected by the amount of the commission and also unaffected if a commission exists or not.
In the next point we explain how the selection of affiliate companies takes place, and how we maintain our seriousness and independence.
How Does Digitalwelt Handle Affiliate Inquiries?
We often receive inquiries from companies that would like us to list them. In this case, we categorize requests as follows:
- Missing Popularity
We look at other reviews to see whether this company was able to receive a placement there. The opinions of popular magazines are also important to us, such as PC World, Wired, Forbes, and consumer report magazines. If we notice that none of these sources have mentioned this company or mentioned them only slightly, in most cases the company will be rejected by our team from being reviewed – regardless of whether we receive a commission on the sale or not. As a rule, Digitalwelt does not review company’s products that have not yet been able to achieve a certain market share.
We also look in the established discussion forums to see how users share their experiences with the product overall. If we find that the manufacturer is an insider tip, we mightstill consider reviewing them despite a missing market share.
- Negative Reputation
The moment we notice that a product is not reputable or a high number of negative reviews are already in circulation, we refrain from a review. Overall, Digitalwelt is a positive magazine. That means that we review and mention good and established products only.
We also don’t want to portray any product or company badly, which is why we simply refrain from a review in most of these cases. Therefore, our readers should usually only read reviews for which we also make a recommendation. The commission amount is irrelevant to us: If we identify a dubious product, we cannot test this product for ethical reasons, especially since we would not install the software on our PCs anyways.
- Well-Known Products With a Positive Reputation
We are considering a thorough review of all other products that make a positive impression on us. An editor from our team then reviews the product in detail. A good example of how we test products can be seen in the NordVPN Review under the section “How Did We Test NordVPN?”.
Our editors have no instructions regarding commissions and star ratings. The review is therefore completely independent.
In many cases we test products for which we do not receive any commissions. Overall, a commission is therefore “nice to have” for us and not a prerequisite for being tested. Every product, with or without a commission, will usually be accepted as soon as we notice that it is a well-known product with a positive reputation. But if a product also pays us to link to their website … even better. The review however will remain unaffected..
Why Does Digitalwelt Have Affiliate Partnerships?
The Affiliate endeavours at Digitalwelt are primarily about covering our costs. Operating such a magazine is associated with high costs, such as hosting and server costs. Since we offer a high technological environment, Digitalwelt uses dedicated servers with so-called staging and developer environments with daily automatic backups, failure safety, and CMS updates. Unfortunately, such services cannot be provided by usual web hosts, which is why we are using Google Servers with the Google Cloud at this point.
In addition, there are server administration costs because the server environments are constantly changing. We therefore have to constantly pay invoices of our server administrators; For example, a new PHP update is regularly due on our server, which must also be carried out by an administrator.
Furthermore, the constant updates repeatedly lead to malfunctions in the magazine’s website – suddenly the menus no longer work, for example, or the mobile view brakes. In such cases, we have to employ and pay our external programmers. In addition to maintaining the environment, constant changes to the design and programming are also necessary, since after a while certain features and designs are no longer up-to-date. We then have to employ a UX/UI designer (formerly these were called web designers), who first creates wireframes for us, and then pours them them into a nice design. And finally this design is then programmed, which means additional costs.
As soon as Digitalwelt makes some profit, we also pay editors for their work. Ultimately, Digitalwelt can be described as a hobby, primarily operated by computer enthusiasts who want to write about certain topics they want to share with the world. Since we are not as big as Wikipedia, we cannot ask for donations. Therefore, the existence of affiliate partners is an important source to cover our costs.
Some of our articles are labeled as “Sponsored Articles” or “Advertisement”. In this case, it means that we will be rewarded for publishing that content.
Why do companies pay the digital world to publish articles?
Some companies want to get their message across in different channels. This can be, for example, a reference to certain products or even a reference to their website. These articles are usually not created by our editorial team. In such cases, an editorial team checks the content and we reserve the right to reject articles. In fact, we do not publish an estimated 80% of the articles sent to us, even if we are paid to do so. This can have several reasons. For example, articles may not meet our quality standards, contain too much advertising and marketing language, or discuss topics that we do not support such as politics, violence, gambling, or other controversial topics. But these can also be topics that are not aligned with our editorial plan overall.
Therefore, sponsored articles we publish are topics that we as the editorial staff also support and consider valuable for our readers. For this reason, very few articles are marked as sponsored on Digitalwelt.org.