Digital River is more than just an affiliate company. They also offer commerce business infrastructure using their proprietary software, technology and intellectual property.


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The Good

  • Experience
  • Features for publishers
  • Many types of reports

Created in 2006, Digital River has almost a decade of experience in affiliate marketing and provides all the basic features that many of its competitors offer. While the company doesn’t offer many services that are unique only to itself, it does remain a strong competitor in this field and has developed a positive reputation.

  • Features for publishers. Primarily, Digital River helps publishers track the progress of their sites by assisting with pixel tracking and API integration with a shopping cart feature. In addition, they allow publishers to create deep links.
  • Many types of reports. As a publisher, your main concern is not just creating links on your website but is viewing the progress of those links and tweaking them accordingly. With Digital River’s many types of reports, you can do just that. On a regular basis, you can view:
    -The performance of your links.
    -The popularity and actions associated with links.
    -The amount of commission the links bring you.
    -Transactions and sales.
    -Any errors you need to adjust with links.
    -Sales of the products your links lead to.With such readily available reports, you can thoroughly monitor and improve the effectiveness of your marketing.

The Bad

  • Need for contact information
  • No webpage building
  • Commissions approach

While Digital River stays afloat with other competitors in this field, it does present a few cons that would leave some clients unsatisfied:

    • A need for more contact information. They fail to present adequate information to clients up front through their company website. They allude to general features that they offer but don’t get very specific, leaving potential and current clients alike to resort to email or calling a live representative. But that leads to another problem the website presents: there is no clear phone number to call. Customers are therefore stuck with waiting for an email to get real answers.
    • No webpage building. While Digital River does offer some extra features such as deep linking, they don’t offer webpage building, which can also be a deterrent for some publishers.
    • Approach to commissions. Perhaps of more concern for publishers is this company’s approach to commissions. They pay their affiliates a percentage of every sale their links lead to, not for every click or other leads. That can drastically affect the amount of money you make on your links.

The Bottom Line

The real test for whether Digital River is a recommendable company is in the needs of publishers and advertisers themselves. For some clients, this company will provide more than enough types of links, for example. They offer four types: banner ads, text links, datafeeds, and coupon codes. For others, however, they may want to branch out into using other types of links to make their website stand out among the more basic ones.

That being said, Digital River does offer a decent amount of features. So they are recommended for people who value those features and strong customer relations. However, they are not recommended for those who highly value a commission according to clicks and leads or readily available support contacts.

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