The Adtraction Blog

Debunking five myths about affiliate marketing

Being one of the longest-standing digital channels, affiliate marketing has attracted a lot of misinformation over the years. Some myths are more prominent than others, so let’s clarify five of the most common ones.

Affiliate marketing can only be conducted with a traditional content website

A common misconception is that affiliate marketing requires a website, but the truth is that an advertiser’s products or service can be promoted in a variety of channels.

Close to 15% of affiliate marketing conversions at Adtraction are derived from other sources than websites. This shows that there is undoubtedly potential for affiliate marketing in other channels.

Adtraction works with a variety of channels, amongst others blogs and instagram profiles, shopping sites, price comparison sites, voucher sites, cashback and loyalty concepts and email newsletters. As long as a person owns or administers an online site, channel or profile where tracking links can be shared, he or she can be an affiliate.

Affiliate marketing requires a great deal of technical skill

Affiliate might seem complicated at first, but most networks want to make affiliate marketing as approachable as possible both for businesses and publishers. Basic technical knowledge can be an advantage, but it is misleading to state that affiliate requires a great deal of technical skill.

Make sure to find a network with a user friendly system and plenty of accessible information that can be used to get started. It is an advantage if the network can provide quick support should you encounter problems.

Affiliate is a ‘conversion’ channel

It’s often said to us that the cost-per-acquisition model means affiliate marketing is a channel that needs to get as close to the customer’s conversion as possible to generate sales. This often leads people to associate affiliate marketing, particularly in the traditional e-commerce sector, with discounting or loyalty shopping.

However, the affiliate channel is the broadest online marketing channel available today. Over 90% of the affiliates that participate in the channel are content orientated websites, while social influencers account for around 15% of active affiliates.

Of course, with this broad range of available partners it’s vital that advertisers consider a range of different incentive models to ensure they can maximise the opportunity available in affiliate marketing.

An affiliate network doesn’t provide added value to the partnership between publisher and advertiser

Another misconception is that affiliate networks don’t provide added value to partnerships between publishers and advertisers.

Not only does the affiliate network provide tracking solutions, it also serves as a neutral third party between the parties.

By managing practical aspects such as agreements, support and payments, an affiliate network saves both parties for a lot of time while facilitating collaborations at a higher scale. The access to a variety of programs makes it attractive for publishers to be part of, and the access to a variety of publishers makes it appealing for advertisers to be part of. Win-win!

Another point to take into consideration is the fact that affiliate networks have acquired knowledge over time and are experienced in the affiliate marketing industry. This enables the network to optimise partnerships in order for both parties to achieve the best return.

These are only some of the advantages of working with a network, and in the vast majority of cases an affiliate network will provide added value to an affiliate partnership.

Affiliate marketing is a way to get rich quick

A common myth about affiliate marketing is that it is a quick way to get rich.

Certain individuals might think that all they have to do is set up a site, choose an affiliate program or network and get started, but unfortunately – that is not the case. How profitable an affiliate turns out to be will amongst others depend on skill, dedication, focus, knowledge and work effort.

As with other marketing channels, affiliate programs require time, effort and optimisation. It can undoubtedly be profitable when done right and when a sufficient amount of work is put into it. Be persistent and think outside the box in order to succeed with affiliate marketing.

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