The Adtraction Blog

What can we expect from affiliate marketing in 2020?

A view of local market developments brought to you by each Adtraction market.

Adtraction is a pan-European affiliate network with offices spread across nine countries. We firmly believe in the importance of local marketing expertise.

Affiliate as a marketing channel is an important part of the digital mix in all the territories we operate in. Challenges or developments often evolve industry-wide and span multiple markets. But interestingly we also see some areas more heavily prioritised or discussed in specific markets.

We took a moment to ask our management team in each Adtraction market to share a key topic that they were interested to see develop – read more about it below.

Affiliate marketing reaching the newspapers in Sweden

Over the past few years an increasing number of media publications have adopted affiliate marketing. These businesses have traditionally been newspapers and magazines that are looking for new ways to optimise their digital real estate.

Affiliate marketing is an attractive option and we’re experiencing increased interest and engagement from these media outlets. Articles written by these media publications are valued by advertisers as the content is high-quality and highly engaging. In addition, the articles tend to have strong conversion rates and attract niche target groups.

Publishing houses are anticipated to account for an increasing share of the affiliate mix in Sweden in 2020.

Direct collaboration with influencers in Denmark

In Denmark, we are seeing a growing trend with influencers and their willingness to test commission-based advertising.

Previously it has been difficult to encourage Danish influencers to test affiliate marketing because they were traditionally accustomed to receiving upfront fees for their activity. For an affiliate network, persuading partners to engage with CPA rather than upfront fees was a challenge.

However this seems to be changing, with an increasing number of influencers now testing the advantages of affiliate marketing because of it’s reach of advertisers and ease in getting setup. These direct collaborations are generating results for both influencers and advertisers on a CPA-based payment model.

A growing interest and acceptance of publisher browser extensions in the UK

The recent acquisition of Honey by PayPal for $4bn has got a lot of people talking about the future of publisher browser extensions. While Honey is the poster-company for browser-extension based publisher businesses, there are now a variety of publishers that use browser extensions as part of their offering, to market reminders, discounts, price comparison or brand discovery.

There is now widespread acceptance of browser extensions within affiliate marketing, which presents a shift in advertiser attitudes. Yet browser companies seem to be moving in the opposite direction, becoming more cautious about the unfettered access extensions have to their users.

While browser extensions are now very much a mainstream part of affiliate marketing we’re interested to see how advertisers and publishers will adapt their strategies to utilise these incredibly powerful consumer-facing tools, while also ensuring they deliver value.

Attribution becoming a crucial part of affiliate marketing in Norway

In Norway we’re seeing more advertisers explore an attributed view of their marketing. As more channels come into the marketing mix, we understand how important it is to make data-led decisions about where to spend marketing budget.

We know that attribution is becoming a crucial part of a marketers day to day work, and we’re actively looking to support advertisers to help make the best decisions and get the best ROI.

Hybrid commission models in Poland

An increasing number of advertisers in Poland are open to working on hybrid commission models. Rethinking the traditional commission models means exchanging some of the CPS or CPL but compensating with additional CPC or CPM budgets.

We perceive this to be a positive trend which creates a more attractive affiliate proposition whilst allowing us to optimise campaigns and cooperate with a wider range of publishers. A hybrid model balances the risk and lowers the barrier both for publishers and advertisers.

The impact of this shift is highlighted by the growing performance of hybrid campaigns. In 2020 we’re looking forward to implementing hybrid commission models for a broader set of advertisers.

App based affiliate marketing in Germany

In Germany we recognise the increasing popularity for app based affiliate marketing.

Advertisers who previously only tracked website conversions are now looking to include tracking within their apps in order to appreciate the full customer journey and reward affiliates who drive traffic that result in app-based sales. We’re also seeing an increasing number of app based advertisers that do not have a website, but would like to utilise affiliate marketing.

This shift means it is becoming increasingly important for affiliate networks to review mobile marketing analytics and work closely with attribution platforms that enable tracking within mobile apps.

Voucher code tracking in Finland

Influencer marketing continues to see growth in Finland, and in more recent years advertisers have partnered with micro and nano influencers due to the targeted audience which results in strong ROI. There is however one challenge: tracking results for those influencers who do not have the swipe up function (owing to follower numbers).

To work around this issue Adtraction provides voucher code tracking. This function allows Adtraction to track all incoming sales from an affiliate promoting a voucher code without requiring an affiliate link. This method of tracking sales works particularly well on Instagram, Snapchat and Podcasts.

We see voucher code tracking as a great opportunity for advertisers to expand their marketing efforts to micro and nano influencers while at the same time monitoring the results.

Increasing demand for publisher and traffic source transparency in Spain

In Spain we are seeing advertisers demand more control and transparency over who their partners are, and how they are generating traffic, leads and sales.

One of the challenges for advertisers involved in affiliate marketing is to understand the initial, valuable source of their leads and sales. Particularly in the finance sector, brokering companies often try to re-distribute leads which can lead to advertiser mistrust. Adtraction has always been fully transparent with advertisers and advertisers can see the source of every lead or sale.

We see this demand for transparency and data from advertisers continuously increasing.

D2C as a counter movement to the marketplace strategy in the Netherlands

Direct-to-Consumer brands have risen in the past few years and in the Netherlands we expect more brands to switch to this business model. It is an attractive setup for brands, giving them more control over their customer journey, supply chain, data while allowing them more control over budget and margin.

In turn, we’ve seen that D2C brands rely more heavily on performance based marketing to reach their target audience via multiple online channels. Utilising affiliates and influencers can have a significant impact on how a brand is perceived and is becoming an important strategy for D2C brands.

A shared theme: A more sophisticated, diverse channel

The affiliate channel is clearly seeing a diversification and re-prioritisation of partner types; from media houses to browser extensions, and importantly making influencers profitable within the channel.

We are also seeing a more intricate way of optimising affiliate activity, with the request for deeper transparency, app-based tracking, attributed views and more strategic commissioning strategies.

All these themes demonstrate the constant evolution of affiliate marketing, with more sophisticated strategies and practices emerging in each market.

Want to chat further about this? Give us a shout at hello@adtraction.com if you’re interested to know more about your local market.

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