The Future of Affiliate Marketing

As a follow up post to Affiliate Marketing Today, this article will look at The Future of Affiliate Marketing

Internet marketing in general is still in its infancy. When affiliate marketing first became popular in the mid to late 1990’s, merchants bragged about the total number of affiliates signed up to their programs. Today, many companies no longer equate a large number of affiliates as a benefit. In fact, it can be a liability. A massive inactive affiliate membership can hinder logistical efficiencies of a program.

From speaking to affiliate managers in the industry, I get the sense that the 80-20 rule probably applies to affiliate marketing as well. 20% of your affiliates generate 80% of your revenue. In fact, some programs even see a 95-5 rule. I for one would rather work with a smaller group of active affiliates than a big group of which only a small percentage of the base is productive. You will see fewer headaches and less resources are required to manage this type of a program – less monitoring and policing to ensure your Affiliates are complying with rules set out in your affiliate agreement, less chance of fraudulent orders taking place, etc…

Affiliate marketing has come a long way since the mid 1990’s, both from a technical standpoint and from a marketing perspective. In addition to issues such as cookie stuffing, parasitic behaviour, and sites created using a data feed, it will definitely be interesting to see what other medium specific concerns the industry will encounter as affiliate marketing matures.

This entry is part of a 3 article post:

1. Affiliate Marketing History – A Brief Look
2. Affiliate Marketing Today
3. The Future of Affiliate Marketing

Ian Lee
Work from home dad, marketer and photographer. Fallen in love with basketball all over again as I coach my daughter's team.

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