How we get paid
Version: 15 March 2016
Canstar is committed to offering comprehensive information to consumers for free.
To generate this quality information our group employ around 60 staff with extensive experience in financial services, and we run large computer systems. This costs millions of dollars every year, and we need to generate revenue in a range of ways to pay for it.
There are four major ways we get paid.
(For a more formal description, you can read our financial services guide).
Subscriptions to our database
Banks subscribe to Canstar’s databases so that they can keep an eye on their competitors without having to spend hundreds of hours on competitor websites. Interestingly, when Canstar first started in 1992 the internet didn’t exist and staff had to walk the streets to do this!
Almost every Australian financial institution is a subscriber, and our fees are low by corporate research standards.
From a consumer’s point of view, the fact that banks are prepared to subscribe to our databases says a lot about the quality of our data.
Once five star winners have been determined, financial institutions have the opportunity to use the Canstar rating or award in their marketing.
A fee is negotiated for allowing the winner to use the Canstar name and award individually or for all ratings and awards they might win in a year. We don’t disclose this as we negotiate it individually in every case, just as newspapers don’t disclose the exact amount that an ad has been sold for.
Canstar’s research team determines five star ratings without fear or favour. For more information on how we avoid conflicts of interests.
Advertising and Sponsored Content
Canstar allows limited advertising on its site. Our goal is to present quality advertising that is highly relevant to consumers. We may display sponsored (paid) articles that we think are useful and relevant to consumers who visit our website. We always include an ‘advertising’ or ‘sponsored link’ sign above the ad or article so people know what it is.
On our tables of data and also on some advertising and articles we provide links to third party sites. The primary purpose of these links is to help consumers get more information to enable them to make informed decisions. Secondly, we may receive payment for these referrals.
Again, we do not arrange our data tables or base our ratings information depending on how much a third party may pay us. CANSTAR takes its research very seriously and goes to great pains to ensure that our results are not influenced by commercial arrangements.