More Publishers Place Big Bets on Product Reviews

From a Wall Street Journal story by Alexandra Bruell headlined “People and Better Homes Publisher Places Big Bet on Product Reviews”:

A few months ago, a couple of employees from Better Homes & Gardens’ parent company, Dotdash Meredith, were hanging out on beach towels, pressing their bare feet against the sand.

They weren’t quite at the beach.

Lying on a thin layer of sand inside a 72,000-square-foot facility in Des Moines, Iowa, they were evaluating different towels for comfort and water absorbency for a Better Homes & Gardens article listing the best beach towels for summer. Readers of the piece would be able to buy the towels that made the list by clicking on links to outside retailers, with the magazine getting a cut of every purchase—a practice known as affiliate commerce.