As a business owner, a part of your goals would include getting your brand to reach a wider audience and meet your sales targets. However, achieving these goals would require a lot of time, resources, and effort.
Thankfully, effective marketing tactics like affiliate marketing can help increase awareness for your brand and increase sales. Also, if you are a digital marketer or blogger, affiliate marketing can earn you some good money online. If you want to learn more about affiliate marketing check out our article about the best affiliate marketing tools.
Affiliate marketing has gradually gained traction from the early 2000s to date. This is because more businesses use this marketing tactic to create more awareness for their brand.
The rise of influencer marketing has helped make affiliate marketing an integral part of marketing plans.
If you are a business owner or a digital marketer, knowing some facts and statistics about this trade will help you achieve better results.
Key Affiliate Marketing Statistics
- Affiliate marketing industry is expected to reach $12 billion in 2022
- Affiliate marketing drives 16% of eCommerce sales in Canada and the US.
- 80% of brands run their own affiliate program.
- Fashion and wellness industries are the top niches.
- 40% of marketers worldwide consider affiliate marketing a crucial skill.
This article will provide some of the top affiliate marketing statistics you should know.
Global Affiliate Marketing Statistics
The affiliate marketing industry has flourished over the years and can do more in the years to come. Here are some global affiliate marketing statistics that show where the industry is headed.
1. According to affiliate marketing statistics, the average affiliate conversion rate is 0.5% to 1%.
(Business 2 Community)
Based on information from a Business 2 Community post, the average affiliate conversion rate is 0.5% to 1%. However, some affiliates produce much higher conversion rates.
2. In 2016, over 80% of advertisers allocated 10% of their budget for affiliate marketing.
Business owners and marketers take affiliate marketing seriously, as they recognize its impact on businesses. According to a survey in 2016, about 80% of advertisers confirmed that they invest heavily into affiliate marketing. They admitted that they set aside 10% of their marketing budget for affiliate marketing campaigns.
3. About 15% of the revenue generated by the digital media industry comes from affiliate marketing.
The digital industry remains one of the industries that benefit massively from affiliate marketing. While advertising provides a bulk of the revenue generated by publishers, about 15% of their total revenue still comes from affiliate marketing.
4. Affiliate marketing spend in the United States have an annual growth rate of 10%.
(Forrester via DocPlayer)
According to a report from Forrester, the expected annual growth rate of the U.S. affiliate marketing spend is 10%. This was estimated between 2015 and 2020. The report predicted the value to grow to more than $6.8 billion between 2015 and 2020.
5. The United States remains the largest affiliate marketing country.
The United States remains the largest affiliate marketing country worldwide. It has an affiliate marketing industry worth $6.8 billion. The second biggest affiliate marketing country is Japan. Its affiliate marketing industry is worth $3.3 billion, with a15% domestic market growth annually.
Other countries with big affiliate markets include Germany, Australia, and the United Kingdom. Their affiliate marketing industries are worth $1.34 billion, $930 million, and $634 million, respectively.
6. Prominent brands generate about 5% to 25% of their online sales through affiliate marketing.
(Kickstart Your Own Affiliate Marketing Business)
According to the book “Kickstart Your Own Affiliate Marketing Business,” affiliate marketing is a complicated channel. It generates a whopping 5% to 25% online sales for some of the world's biggest brands. The book further indicated that many major multi-channel marketers engage in at least one or more affiliate marketing programs.
7. About 83% of affiliates recruiters get recruits within affiliate network dashboards.
(Forrester via DocPlayer)
Statistics from Forrester show that around 83% of affiliate recruiters find new affiliates through affiliate network dashboards. About 79% of these affiliate recruiters attend events hosted by other affiliate networks, while an estimated 71% use a join network button on their website. Interestingly, about 56% of affiliate recruiters will host their events searching for new affiliates.
8. The United States' marketing spends on affiliate marketing will reach $8.2 billion by 2022.
As of 2017, the U.S. marketing spend was at $5.4 billion. However, affiliate marketing statistics from Statista reveal that the U.S. marketing spend is projected to hit an $8.2 billion mark by the end of 2022.
9. About 50% of shoppers come with digital coupons when shopping in-store.
A report from Inmar Intelligence reveals that 50% of shoppers go shopping with digital coupons when they shop in-store. Due to this, around 39% of shoppers will buy a product faster than expected because they have a coupon for it. Also, 39% of shoppers claim to have bought from brands they don't like because of coupons.
10. Affiliate marketing is the second biggest digital revenue generator for publishers, only behind Google AdSense.
Publishers have found that affiliate marketing is the second biggest digital revenue generator behind Google AdSense. Other top revenue generators include display advertising, paid product reviews, brand sponsorship, and other forms of native advertising.
11. Around 7.5% of retailers’ digital spend is on affiliate marketing.
Affiliate marketing accounts for about 7.5% of the total digital spend among retailers. EMarketer revealed this Affiliate marketing industry statistic.
12. Affiliate marketers earn an average of $51,639 per year.
Affiliate marketers earn a pretty decent salary. PayScale shows that an affiliate marketer's average salary yearly is $51,639. The base salary can range from $38,000 to $72,000 before taxes and other deductions. However, this figure does not include additional pay like benefits, commissions, or bonuses.
13. Most affiliate marketers generate about $20,000 or more per year.
Although the average affiliate marketer has an average salary of $51,639, most affiliate marketers earn more. Reports from a poll conducted by Affise where affiliate marketers were asked how much they made yearly revealed that most affiliate marketers earn less than expected.
A total of 22 respondents, which makes up about 18.8% of all surveyed marketers, claimed they only make $20,000 or less. Sixteen respondents who make up 13.68% of all surveyed marketers said they make an average of $81,000 to $120,000 per year. The other 15 respondents reported making between $121,000 to $200,000 yearly.
Affiliate Marketing Facts
There are several facts about affiliate marketing every prospective affiliate marketer should know. The more affiliate marketing facts you know, the better you can capitalize on the industry's opportunities. Here, we learn more about affiliate marketing facts related to commissions and who to partner with.
14. Amazon Associates reduce commission rates due to the pandemic.
Affiliate marketers earn by generating traffic and getting commissions. Amazon is one of the biggest brands that use affiliate marketing. In 2020, Amazon Associates reduced its commission rates for some product categories. For example, Grocery products went from as high as 5% to 1%. The furniture and home improvement products were also cut back from 8% to 3%.
15. Instagram planned to launch affiliate and shop features for creators in 2021.
Instagram planned to test its new native affiliate tool during the latter parts of 2021. This affiliate tool will allow Instagram creators to recommend available products at checkout and share them with followers. Through this, creators can earn commissions for sales gotten from their posts.
However, creators have to make posts with the affiliate feature enabled. Whenever a post with the affiliate feature enabled is made, a text stating “eligible for commission” will appear below their username, close to the sponsored content labels. Several affiliate marketers have confirmed using the Instagram affiliate marketing program.
16. Apple now runs an affiliate program for podcasters.
(Apple Podcasts for Creators)
Apple is another prominent brand that benefits from affiliate marketing. According to Apple Podcasts for Creators, Apple now runs an affiliate program for podcasters. This affiliate program is designed to be another source of revenue on Apple Podcasts. Affiliate marketers can now join Apple’s affiliate program for free.
This affiliate program gives marketers access to Apple's reporting data, which can be viewed through their linked podcast marketing activities. This includes their email, digital ads, social promotions, and more. For every subscription purchase made through a marketer's affiliate link, the marketer earns a commission.
17. About 74% of product users trust social networks to help them make purchase decisions.
Tradedoubler statistics show that about 74% of people allow social media to influence their purchase decisions. They trust these social networks to guide them to get the best products they need. Interestingly, about 49% of users state that they rely on influencer recommendations. In addition, around 40% of Twitter users admit to buying at least one product based on a tweet.
18. In 2006, affiliate networks made £2.16 billion in the U.K. alone.
(Affiliate Marketing for Beginners: 12 Steps to Your Affiliate Marketing Business in 2021)
A book published in 2021 revealed that affiliate networks made £2.16 billion in the U.K. alone in 2006. The worldwide revenue from affiliate marketing that same year was $6.5 billion, according to other affiliate marketing statistics.
19. Around 90% of advertisers believe affiliate programs are essential.
According to Rakuten Advertising, a survey on advertisers was done in 2016. In this survey, about 90% of surveyed advertisers stated that affiliate programs are essential for their overall marketing strategy. In addition, most publishers agreed that about 20% of their annual revenue came from affiliate partnerships.
20. Before shoppers purchase some products, around 74% visit non-retail sites.
Most shoppers want a third-party validation for the products they wish to purchase. This is supported by statistics from Business Insider that reveal that about 74% of online shoppers visit non-retail sites before they purchase their desired products. It further revealed that US-based shoppers already intending to buy a product will still visit at least two or three non-retail sites before making their purchase. In addition, about 16% of US-based shoppers admit to visiting more than four websites.
21. In the last five years, the interest in affiliate marketing has increased.
Statistics from Google Trends reveal that there has been a growing interest in the affiliate marketing industry in the last five years. The term “affiliate marketing” was rated 100 in a Google Trend score in June 2021. This indicates that affiliate marketing reached its peak popularity as of June 2021. This is impressive compared to the score of just 24 as of January 2017
22. About 34% of publishers with less than 5,000 unique visitors make money through affiliate marketing.
According to Viglink, publishers with less than 5,000 monthly unique views make affiliate marketing their primary source of generating revenue. However, Viglink also points out that around 64% of publishers say they fail to meet their affiliate revenue targets. In addition, about 77% of publishers confirmed that the income made from affiliate marketing programs between 2015 to 2016 either increased or remained consistent.
23. CDNOW.com and Amazon have contributed enormously to affiliate marketing since taking affiliate marketing mainstream.
(Affiliate Program Management: An Hour a Day)
In a book titled “Affiliate Program Management: An Hour a Day,” CDNow.com and Amazon are responsible for the birth of mainstream affiliate marketing. It started in 1994 when CDNOW launched a BuyWeb program. This program was the first program of its kind. About two years later, Amazon used the same formula. In July 1996, the Amazon Associates program launched its affiliate program. By 2010, Amazon stated that it had one million associates globally.
24. Generating revenue from online purchases could take some time.
Many believe affiliate marketing is a get-rich-quick scheme that starts paying out immediately. However, this is not always true. According to Affise, making money from affiliate marketing can take at least six months. A determining factor is how creative the affiliate marketer is when creating content and SEO optimization.
Email and Social media marketing are some of the primary strategies affiliate marketers use. These strategies play a vital role in how profitable their passive income strategy becomes. To be successful at this, one has to generate search interest to create a demand for the product they are marketing.
The Latest Affiliate Marketing Trends
Daily, there are new trends in the affiliate marketing industry. Here, we will discuss the biggest affiliate marketing trends everyone should know. As an affiliate marketer, this helps you generate more traffic. It will also help you better understand where the industry is headed.
25. Most prominent affiliate marketers utilize a full-funnel affiliate strategy.
Affiliate marketing trends published by Rakuten Advertising show that affiliate marketers can capture customers at any point in their journey. It further revealed that around 83% of customers were captured during the discovery and awareness phase. About 79% of customers were captured during conversion and ongoing customer engagement.
26. The most profitable affiliate programs are found in the fashion category in the affiliate marketing industry.
According to an affiliate marketing industry report by AM Navigator, the most profitable affiliate programs are found in the fashion category. It takes up about 18.7% of all affiliate programs. Sports and outdoors is the second largest with 14.60%. In third place is health and wellness with 11.10%.
27. Many customers' purchasing behavior is affected by coupons.
Coupons are reported to influence people's purchasing behavior, affecting affiliate marketing sales. Statistics show that 83% of consumers confirm that coupons influence their purchase decisions during regular shopping trips.
28. Affiliate marketing strategies are expected to fill the void created by third-party cookies.
In recent years, third-party cookies have been pushed further out of the picture. On the other hand, affiliate marketing strategies are on the rise. Statistics from Adweek show that more people are turning to affiliate marketing and neglecting third-party cookies. It further revealed that affiliate marketing campaigns provide marketers with the opportunity to find their target customers in their native environments.
29. Brand affinity is crucial for every affiliate program.
Forbes states that thinking about at least one value that makes your affiliate program a great choice for your partners is essential. For example, if you are good at paying your partners promptly, you should ensure you can get that point across. This will endear you to your partners better than just marketing your offers.
30. About 84% of publishers and 81% of advertisers include affiliate marketing as part of their marketing strategy.
(Forrester via DocPlayer)
According to statistics from Forrester, about 84% of publishers and 81% of advertisers rely on affiliate marketing in their overall marketing strategy. In contrast, 3% of publishers and advertisers claim they don’t plan on including affiliate marketing in any part of their marketing strategy in the near future.
31. Choosing the right affiliate products will result in better profits.
(Affiliate Marketing Success)
Many affiliate marketers are successful today because they know how to apply the right strategies to affiliate marketing. In the book “Affiliate Marketing Success,” some secrets to becoming a successful affiliate marketer were mentioned. One of such secrets is choosing the right affiliate products.
The book mentioned that marketers could keep about 70% or more of the profit by selling the right affiliate products like ebooks. This indicates that choosing the right products to promote in your marketing campaign improves your affiliate marketing average income.
32. Software affiliate programs are one of the most lucrative affiliate programs.
Statistics show that software affiliate programs are among the most lucrative affiliate programs. Affiliate marketers can earn as much as 30% commission for every payment for software affiliate programs. However, it is one of the most competitive programs in the industry because of the high return.
Travel affiliate programs are another lucrative affiliate program worth trying. It has several niches marketers can explore. For example, the flight tickets industry offers some good commissions. Marketers can get between 1% to 3% in commission. Based on the total order value, they can earn around 3% to 12% commission in the accommodations industry.
33. Most marketers work with influencers.
About 84% of marketers worldwide work with influencers to an extent. To explore the potentials of such partnerships, four things should
Firstly, ensure the objectives of your influencer campaigns are clearly defined. Secondly, ensure you develop a good relationship with the influencers you are working with. Thirdly, always get your content right. And lastly, have a working budget to test run which strategies work for you.
34. eBay is one of the biggest platforms for affiliate marketing.
(One More Cup of Coffee)
Reports from One More Cup of Coffee reveal that eBay has one of the largest affiliate commission rates. Affiliate marketers can earn as high as 50% to 70% profit on the products they market. However, the profit percentage depends on the type of product they choose to sell.
On eBay, fashion products pay some of the highest commissions, as marketers can earn as high as 70% commission. The electronics category comes next with about 50% commission. Etsy is another fantastic affiliate platform to explore, among others.
35. More smartphone users are involved in the affiliate market.
According to Pew Research, more smartphone users buy products sold by affiliate marketers. About 85% of the 97% of cellphone users in the United States use their device to buy these affiliate products. The more smartphone adoption increases, the more people buy online products.
Therefore, affiliate marketers must include mobile users in their upcoming affiliate marketing strategies and campaigns. They have to figure out how to approach and advertise to these smartphone users, as mobile affiliate marketing is speculated to be the future.
The affiliate marketing industry has enjoyed huge success in recent years. Interestingly, it continues to grow in the market size and annual revenue generated.
This is because the affiliate marketing industry has a huge potential to help brands promote their products and generate passive income for affiliate marketers.
Affiliate marketing reduces the barrier to entry in terms of marketing and monetization.
Affiliate marketing remains one of most bloggers' and marketers' essential monetization tactics. They can use it to add an extra revenue stream to their business or drive sales directly.
The affiliate marketing statistics discussed in this article should help you understand the industry better as a blogger or affiliate market.
They will also help you readjust your marketing strategy to make the most out of the industry.