You have the questions, we have the answers 

General info about the OTTO Partner Program

Who participates in an Affiliate Program?

Advertiser: The Advertiser operates the Affiliate Program, in this case this is OTTO. 

Publisher: The Publisher is the virtual “Sales Branch” who, as the operator of a website, is paid to make his or her precious webspace available for the operator’s advertising banners. 

How does an Affiliate Program work?

An Affiliate Program is an online marketing measure of a website operator. The program coverst he cooperation between a Merchant and an Affiliate. 

On its website, the Affiliate integrates an ad that refers users to the Merchant’s website, or the Affiliate integrates the Merchant’s offers in his / her website with the aim to refer potential customers to the Merchant. In return for this service, the Affiliate gets a commission. 

How do I join the OTTO Affiliate Program?

All you need to do is read and understand the participation conditions. You will then have to fill in our registration form and accept our entry terms. We will then verify your registration and inform you about participation. 

Why does it pay to enter into a partnership with OTTO?

There are many reasons to join and become a partner! By cooperating with OTTO as a strong and experienced partner in eCommerce, you get the opportunity to increase the attractiveness of your website regarding both content and website visualization. 

We will provide all the tools required to manage advertising materials and will offer you all the support you may need in order to optimize sales activities initiated through your website. 

We handle the orders placed through your links, prepare sales statistics for you and manage all business activities. 

In addition, our program enables you to earn extra revenue without any investment risks. 

Is the OTTO Affiliate Program free of charge?

Yes, OTTO will not charge any kind of fee. We do not charge any participation fee nor will you have to pay any costs for participating in the program. In other words, you can only benefit from becoming an OTTO Affiliate Partner. 

What are the basic requirements I have to meet to participate in the OTTO Affiliate Program?

To join our OTTO Affiliate Program, you must be of age (i.e. 18 years old) and fully legally competent. In addition, you must have a bank account in Germany. The bank account must be configured to support electronic payment systems. Your remuneration will be credited to this bank account only. 

Which web pages may participate in the OTTO Affiliate Program?

As a rule, everybody who owns a website may join our Affiliate Program. The better your website is suited to our product assortments, the greater your success, which you will achieve as our partner, will be. 

We are, however, not obliged to accept your registration. After checking your registration thoroughly, we reserve the right to refuse acceptance of your participation if we consider content on your website to constitute an unsuitable environment for OTTO. 

The following content will result in an exclusion: 

  • Language (sexualized or coarse language, blasphemy, moderately strong language, et), 
  • Pornography, sexual dominance or depiction of nudity, 
  • Positive portrayal of drugs and weapons, 
  • Content that may adversely influence children, 
  • Depiction of violence (sexual violence, killing of people or animals, …), 
  • Illegal activities, 
  • Discrimination or violence against people, 
  • Pages with content that is racist, politically radical or liable to have an undesirable influence on young people, 
  • Insults or content that infringes on the intellectual property rights of others, 
  • Websites that are not in line with the content presented by OTTO or are of poor quality. 

Can I participate in the OTTO Affiliate Program without having a website?

Yes, if youre sending out a newsletter in which you want our banners to appear. Otherwise, having your own website is a general requirement for joining our Affiliate Program. We need it to check your registration, after all, it is the only valid reference for us to go on as we need to verify your online presence. You moreover need it because besides a newsletter, a web page is the only way for us to publish our ads on the Internet in order to earn money. 

Can I register more than one website for the OTTO Affiliate Program?

Yes, use the registration form to enter your website information, then use the field for comments to list all the other websites you wish to register. Subsequent registration of further websites is possible as well. Please use our contact form for this purpose.

May I also use an international website to participate in the OTTO Affiliate Program?

This depends on the content and target group of your website and must be approved individually, after all, we are targeting the German-speaking market and only deliver in Germany. 

Can I join the OTTO Affiliate Program as a private individual?

Yes, if you own a website or regularly send out newsletters, you are welcome to join our Affiliate Program. In addition, you have to comply with our requirements (cf. “Which websites can participate in the Affiliate Program?”) 

Do I have to take care of the customers who are buying products from OTTO through my website?

No, OTTO will take care of this for you: If one of your visitors places an order with us through a link on your website or in your newsletter, OTTO will handle all subsequent business activities. A business relationship with the customer will be established by OTTO only. 

What happens after you register?

After your registration has been received, we will check it thoroughly and inform you about your participation in our Program. We are, however, not obliged to accept your registration and may refuse you on the basis of the reasons mentioned above. You will then get access to your personal log-in area at Awin, where you will find information about which steps to take next. 

Why is it so important to classify my website correctly when registering?

Only if your website has been placed in the correct category are we able to suggest to you the right advertising materials in line with the topics dealt with on your website or in your newsletter. The better our advertising content is matched to the preferences of your visitors, the more likely it will be for them to respond to our advertising message. This will also increase the probability of an order being placed through your link. 

How do I get relevant newsletters and how can I change my newsletter subscription preferences?

Simply register for our Affiliate Newsletter. Depending on the focus of your website, you can select the assortments or topics you wish to be informed about. 

Can the partnership be cancelled at any time? How can I cancel the partnership?

Yes, the partnership between you and OTTO can be cancelled at any time without giving a reason. Get in touch with us and we will take the necessary steps for cancelling the partnership. 

Success monitoring and reports 

Where can I find my reports?

If your registration has been sucessful, (an OTTO staff member will unlock your account), you will get a registration confirmation containing the access details you need in order to  enter your personal log-in area. Use the account info provided to log in. If your log-in attempt has been successful, you will find your reports, banners and master data listed. 

How do I find out which links perform particularly well?

Use your personal Awin Dashboard, it contains various reports and statistics enabling you to analyze and track your advertising performance. 

Which reports are made available for me to use?

We will provide all reports required for you to successfully manage and thoroughly analyse your website. 

How do I learn about the latest advertising materials and special activities, etc.?

Use your personal log-in area and our informative email newsletter to find out about our latest advertising means, special promotional activities, etc. 

What are page impressions?

Page Impressions (PI) specify how often the ads you have integrated have been shown to your visitors. If your report lists 2000 Page Impressions, it means that your visitors have clicked on the website containing the relevant ad(s) 2000 times exactly. 

What does click-throughs or click-through rate mean?

The number of click-throughs (CTs) specifies how often your visitors have clicked on a banner. The click-through rate (CTR) reflects the ratio between Page Impressions and click-throughs. Example: 1,000 PIs and 100 CTs dquals a CTR of 10%. 

What is the meaning of Conversion Rate?

The Conversion Rate (CR) reflects the ratio between click-throughs and orders placed. Example: 1,000 CTs and 50 orders equals a CR of 5%. 

How often and when are my reports updated?

Early in the morning, OTTO transfers the data relating to the previous day to the relevant networks. This means that the reports listed in your personal log-in area always contain the sales achieved up to the previous day. 

Dynamic attribution model 

How does dynamic attribution work?

Especially developed by OTTO for this purpose, OTTO uses the system of dynamic attribution for its Affiliate Program. This model attributes an effective share to each ad that has been clicked on and has played a role in the final conversion. Depending on its relevance, this share is then converted into a commission. 

Each Publisher who has contributed towards achieving a conversion is thus attributed a share in the sale. The commission share paid out for a confirmed order is calculated on the basis of different attribution values. 

With regard to this model, what are my benefits as an Affiliate?

The main advantage for you as an Affiliate is that you receive credit for each sale you have had a part in. Each click that contributes towards a conversion is paid for. This means that you get credit for more sales than you would if the traditional last-cookie-wins principle was applied. 

Customer journey remuneration is calculated for a 30-day period. Each click within this period is tracked until the time a sale is completed. 

Commissions and payment  

How is my commission calculated?

Commissions depend both on the type of Publisher and the product assortment offered. You will find the commission rates for individual segments here. 

How and when is my commission paid out?

You will get your commission paid out on time each month. If you are below the minimum amount of 15.-, the transfer will be delayed one month. This procedure will then be repeated until the minimum amount has been reached. 

Will all sales generated through me be remunerated?

The commission model generally takes returned items into account, i.e. an order will be considered „valid“ if the customer keeps at least one item. In other words, you will be paid for every visitor who, having been referred to the OTTO online shop through one of your ads, has made a purchase during one session and has subsequently not returned all items bought. Orders placed by customers entitled to a commission (who already get a monetary advantage from OTTO) and by OTTO employees are excluded. 

I am already an official OTTO Affiliate Partner, but have not yet received any money though I have generated several sales. Why might this be the case?

First, you may possibly still be below the minimum payout amount of 15.– EUR. If, according to your statistics, you have exceeded the minimum payment threshold, please check the bank account info listed in your master / profile data. If you still can’t find any error, please get in touch with our support team. 

Am I subject to income tax?

Yes, you are generally subject to income tax through the income you earn as an Affiliate Partner. In this context, your income consists of your earnings (remuneration paid by OTTO) less expenses (e.g. your postal fees, internet costs.) These earnings constitute income from trade or business and you must declare this income on your income tax declaration in the [German] appendix GSE. If your business is in corporate form (e.g. a German company type such as GmbH or AG), your earnings are subject to corporate income tax. 

Am I subject to VAT?

The assessment of whether you are subject to VAT depends on your earnings and place of residence. 

  1. a) I live in the federal republic of Germany and my income does not exceed 16,620 EUR. You are generally not subject to VAT. In this case, OTTO pays your remuneration as a net amount without adding a VAT surcharge.

Exception: It is possible to voluntarily opt for standard VAT arrangements. If you wish to waive your right to exemption from VAT, you must declare this to your tax office. B) will then apply to you. 

  1. b) I live in the federal republic of Germany and my income exceeds 16,620 EUR (or I have opted for standard VAT arrangements.) You are an entrepreneur subject to VAT. In this case, OTTO pays your remuneration plus current, legally applicable VAT (19% at present). You are obliged to register for VAT with your tax office and to pay the due amount on time.

In order to issue your credit note in conformity with legal provisions, we need the VAT number you have registered with your tax office for VAT payment. If you do not have a tax number yet, please contact your local tax office. 

Why has my order not been tracked or paid for?

Reasons for orders not having been tracked or paid for: 

  • The order wasn‘t placed through an active Partner website  
  • The order was returned or cancelled 
  • The order was processed or cancelled on the phone by an OTTO customer service consultant 
  • The purchase was made through a seller partnering with OTTO e.g. myToys, Mirapodo and Buttlers. Such items can be identified on the OTTO website because they are listed as „Sold and shipped by [Partner Name]“ or „parcel from [Partner Name]“, 
  • The order contains books that fall under Fixed Book Price Law 
  • The order was placed by a customer entitled to a commission who, either regularly or automatically, has already been granted a monetary advantage by OTTO. 
  • The order was placed through collective ordering or by friends /  neighbours / recommended customers placing a joint order  
  • The order was placed by an Otto Group staff member or a retired Otto Group employee  
  • The order was placed using a shopping or gift voucher 
  • The order was a commercial order 

Help and service 

I don’t know how to program HTML. Will OTTO help me integrate my banners?

Because the number of participants who have joined our affiliate program is very high, we are not able to help each participant add their banners or set up their own shops. We will however provide a lot of useful information to help you add your links. 

Whom should I contact if I have any questions or problems regarding the OTTO Affiliate Program?

We have set up a contact form specifically for this purpose. Here, you can send us a message, we will get in touch with you as soon as possible.

Where do I find the conditions of participation / general terms and conditions?

To learn about the conditions of participation in our affiliate program, please click here. 

How do I get the Affiliate Newsletter?

Register for our Affiliate Newsletter here. Depending on the focus of your web page you can select the assortments or topics you wish to receive further information about. 

Where can I find the application guidelines?

To find out about our application guidelines, please click here.