Performance Marketing in Focus :: AffStat 2012 Report

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The Affiliate Summit Aff Stat report has been released - coinciding nicely actually with the bi-annual Affiliate Summit show happening now. The Aff Stat report provides an interesting and detailed look at the state of the performance marketing industry, particularly as it relates to affiliate marketing and the promotional techniques and tactics employed in that particular marketing category.

Highlights of the AffStat report, available here, are included below:

- 1400 affiliates took the survey and 86 percent were from the USA. That alone should raise an eyebrow - in many countries (most noteworthy being the UK, Austrailia, Canada, and gee, I don’t know, all of Eastern Europe) there is far more interest than was obviously reached in the survey.

- Some interesting statistics related to the demographics of affiliates were included in the survey results. Affiliates tend to be male, in their mid-30’s, with more than half of respondents reporting being married and with 4-year college degrees.

- How affiliate typically drive traffic to their sites is always one of the most cited bits of data from the AffStat report. SEO, Social, Email, PPC Advertising, Word-of-Mouth (WOM), Guest Posting, Video or Images, Display Marketing, Online Marketing, and Comment Marketing were the top ten responses given to the question in that specific order.

Actually, Blogging matched social networks as the second top source of traffic. I’m not exactly sure blogging made the list, other than that survey respondents might have answered this question without realizing what they were exactly doing - which may the reason that a majority of the survey respondents have only been active as an affiliate in the last 30 months.

- 80.7 percent of respondents were the decision maker on what affiliate programs to promote. That may either suggest that respondents were positioned in a high-level within their organization or working in a flat corporate hierarchy (like a one-man “company”).

- Commission, Merchant Reputation and Product/Service Relevancy were the top three factors that influenced the decision on what merchant to promote.

- Internet retailers offering performance marketing (affiliate) programs should pay particular attention to the survey data related to how their offerings are managed. 34 percent indicated the relationship with the affiliate manager was crucial, 46 percent indicated it was somewhat valuable, and 19 percent considered it irrelevant.

- The preferred method for discovering information from an affiliate manager was email at 47 percent.

- The top affiliate networks will also interest merchants - likely as much as it does other affiliates. Commision Junction, ShareaSale, LinkShare, Clickbank, and GAN (Google Affiliate Network) were cited as the top five affiliate networks. Pepperjam, LinkConnector, Impact Radius, Digital River OneNetworkDirect, Affiliate Window and Avant Link also all made an appearance in this year’s AffStat survey.

- The ongoing state legislation limiting affiliate marketing practices is seemingly less dramatic than once thought. 65.8 percent find the affiliate legislation irrelevant, and 29 percent indicated it had/has a limited impact. 5.1 percent (certainly nothing to ignore) indicated it “crushed” their business.

- The number of programs being promoted by affiliates will also be important to merchants; just so that they don’t think they’re the only game in town. 54 percent promote between 1 and 10 programs.

 
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