There is a demand for new and robust PdII extractants due to growing recycling rates. Chelating dithioethers are promising substances for solvent extraction as they form stable square-planar complexes with PdII. We have modified unsaturated dithioethers, which are known to coordinate PdII, and adapted them to the requirements of industrial practice. The ligands are analogues of 1,2-dithioethene with varying electron-withdrawing backbones and polar end-groups. The crystal structures of several ligands and their palladium complexes were determined as well as their electro- and photochemical properties, complex stability and behaviour in solution. Solvent extraction experiments showed the superiority of some of our ligands over conventionally used extractants in terms of their very fast reaction rates. With highly selective 1,2-bis(2-methoxyethylthio)benzene (4) it is possible to extract PdII from a highly acidic medium in the presence of other base and palladium-group metals.