“Affiliate marketing has made businesses millions and ordinary people millionaires,” is one of the most famous affiliate marketing quotes by Bo Bennet. Conceptualized first by William J. Tobin in 1989, the idea of affiliate marketing boomed in 1996 when Amazon Associates, BeFree, and LinkShare produced some major successes.
The idea of passive income stuck, and today affiliate marketing is among the most popular tactics to drive sales and generate revenue. Beneficial for both brands and affiliates, this method pushes the boundaries of traditional marketing, offering a new, convenient, and cost-effective frontier.
Check out the affiliate marketing statistics below if you’re interested in learning more about the concept of this unique type of marketing.
Affiliate Marketing Facts & Stats (Editors Pick)
- ShareASale holds 55.7% of the market share.
- Affiliate marketers prefer to promote 1–10 products.
- Fashion is the most popular affiliate marketing category.
- 81% of marketers and 84% of publishers leverage the power of affiliate marketing.
- More than 50% of affiliate-referred traffic comes from mobile devices.
- Groupon is one of the most successful companies built on affiliate commissions.
- Almost half of affiliate marketers make less than $20,000 a year.
- Jason Stone made $7 million in affiliate marketing revenue in a single year.
Affiliate Marketing Statistics 2021
1. 15% of the total digital media advertising revenue is attributed to affiliate marketing.
The concept of affiliate marketing has been around for a long time, but as the internet has become more and more available in recent years, affiliate marketing rose to prominence, and the affiliate software market is blooming. While publishers are still generating the majority of their revenue from advertising, affiliate marketing is growing fast. Today it accounts for 15% of the digital media industry’s revenue.
2. Annual affiliate marketing spending is projected to hit the $6.8 billion mark.
The affiliate marketing industry statistics show steady growth. In fact, the US affiliate marketing spending increases annually by 10.1% and it’s expected to reach $6.8 billion by 2020.
3. 81% of marketers and 84% of publishers leverage the power of affiliate marketing.
Affiliate marketing is among the most popular tactics for digital marketers to capture customers’ attention and engage with existing customers, thus driving sales and generating revenue. The fact that 81% of brands and 84% of publishers have already adopted this tactic emphasizes the undeniable affiliate marketing growth.
(Web Market Support)
4. In less than a year, the search interest for “affiliate marketing” grew by 44%.
The interest in affiliate marketing doesn’t stop. Just between December 2017 and June 2018, searches for the term “affiliate marketing” saw this impressive increase.
5. Driving conversions and increasing purchases are the two main goals for 79% of marketers.
Advertising specialists turn to the affiliate industry to boost their conversion rates and improve online purchases. Additionally, 83% of them use it to increase brand awareness, and 79% of them use it to engage existing customers.
6. Male affiliates dominate the affiliate marketing scene.
It seems that the idea of passive income attracts men more than women. Currently, there are 54.23% male and 42.97% female affiliates.
(Top 10 Website Hosting)
7. Fashion is the most popular affiliate marketing category.
AM Navigator’s affiliate marketing industry report revealed that fashion is the niche with the highest number of affiliate programs – it accounts for 18.7% of the total share. The sports and outdoors category comes in second with 14.6%, followed by health/wellness and beauty at 11.1%, and travel at 8.6%.
8. Affiliate programs generate 15%–30% of all sales for advertisers.
Affiliate marketing is a fast-growing market. Today, merchants see an average of 23% of their revenues coming from affiliate marketing, which is on par with SEO and PPC marketing.
9. ShareASale holds 55.7% of the market share.
ShareASale is the favorite affiliate network for marketers, holding first place for the industry’s market share. Next on the list of the largest affiliate networks come Rakuten LinkShare, Avangate, and Ebay Network, with 40.64%, 31.08%, and 30.32%, respectively.
10. Awin affiliates earned over $700 million last year.
Awin, the global affiliate network that acquired ShareASale, distributed $734 million among more than 100000 contributors in 2018.
11. Affiliate marketers prefer to promote 1–10 products.
Affiliate marketing statistics show that the majority of affiliate marketers (42.17% of them) prefer to promote between 1–10 products. 23.18% of them like to promote 11–20 products, while 14.19% would promote 21–50 products. Only 7.53% of affiliate marketers like to promote over 300 products.
12. 76% of publishers feel the ease of monetizing is the best benefit of affiliate marketing.
Many publishers choose affiliate marketing as a form of passive income. The majority of them feel that the ease of generating affiliate marketing revenue is the greatest benefit behind this scheme. Additionally, 65% of them said that it generates additional revenue, and 45% like affiliate marketing because it doesn’t disrupt the user experience.
13. More than 50% of affiliate-referred traffic comes from mobile devices.
The expansion of mobile devices is changing the marketing landscape, opening more possibilities for brands to reach potential customers. To put these affiliate marketing stats into even better perspective, keep in mind that there are over 2 billion smartphone users worldwide. This means mobile traffic is more lucrative than ever. This trend brought about the rise of mobile affiliate marketing, which involves the process of using offers and tactics created specifically for mobile users.
14. Affiliate partnerships drive more than 20% of the annual revenue for publishers, according to the latest affiliate marketing statistics.
Thanks to affiliate networks, the accessibility and adoption of affiliate programs have boomed. This trend delivers great value for publishers, and we can only expect affiliate marketing to take a more significant portion of the marketing campaigns and budgets in the future.
15. Rakuten’s acquisition of Ebates for $1 billion marked a substantial amount paid for an affiliate.
Back in 2014, Rakuten paid $1 billion in cash for Ebates. With the acquisition, Japan’s largest e-commerce firm gained entry into the growing US market, and Ebates became the highest-paid affiliate network.
16. Groupon is one of the most successful companies built on affiliate commissions.
If you’re asking yourself, Is affiliate marketing worth it? just take a look at Groupon. Until late 2009, Groupon was considered a failure. Then a magic turnaround happened when the e-commerce marketplace leveraged the power of affiliates. Groupon went from being broke to becoming a powerhouse with the largest IPO by a web company since Google. Groupon put its focus on creating relationships directly with its affiliates.
17. For 18.15% of marketers, the relevance of the product or service is the most important factor when choosing a program.
According to the AffStat 2016 Affiliate Marketing Benchmarks, the product or service’s relevance is the top concern for many marketers when choosing a program. Two more top factors are the affiliate program’s reputation, for 15.97% of marketers, and the affiliate network or tracking platform, for 11.58%.
18. Since 2017, Amazon offers creators rates ranging from 1% to 10% of product revenue.
Amazon Associates, one of the most popular affiliate programs, decided to calculate the commissions by category, not by the number of products sold, providing the opportunity for affiliates to increase their income based on the vertical they’re selling on. For instance, creators earn up to a 10% commission for promoting luxury items, and only 1% commission for promoting video games.
19. Almost half of affiliate marketers make less than $20,000 a year.
Probably the most frequently asked question is, How much do affiliate marketers make? To begin with, we would like to point out that only 3.2% of affiliate marketers earn over $150000 per year. The majority of them, at 48.36%, make less than $20,000.
20. 35% of affiliates earn over $20,000.
Many people interested in the affiliate marketing industry wonder what the affiliate marketing average income is. While the majority of affiliates earn up to $20,000 on a yearly basis, there is still a large portion of affiliates that go beyond this mark. Out of the 35% of affiliates who earn more than $20,000 per year, 12% make over $75,000 in affiliate income. Not bad at all!
(Ink Well Editorial)
21. The top affiliate marketers are known to make six figures from the business.
There are a plethora of affiliate marketers, but some of them really stand out. They are people who have invested a lot of time and effort to get to the point where they make a living out of affiliate marketing and are real stars in the industry. Pat Flynn, John Chow, Rae Hoffman, Mark Ling, Kristy Mccubbin, and Shawn Collins are some of the names you should follow to be successful.
22. Jason Stone made $7 million in affiliate marketing revenue in a single year.
When we talk about successful affiliate marketers, Jason Stone, better known as @millionare_mentor, first comes to mind. The Instagram star has managed to generate $7 million in retail sales through affiliate marketing. He shared that the secret behind his success was to always choose campaigns that fit your brand and your audience’s interests.
23. AI and voice search are among the biggest affiliate marketing trends.
Content remains a vital part of affiliate marketing, and we will see the indirect discounting that happens through affiliates increase. Still, the major game-changers will be AI and voice search. The intuitive technology eases the path for marketers, making it even more efficient.
Why Choose Affiliate Marketing?
Affiliate marketing is a cost-effective solution that enables you to gain income by promoting other people’s products and services. This process is usually done through an affiliate network. Most importantly, it’s significantly less time-consuming when compared to most other marketing methods, and it enables you to enhance your paycheck from the comfort of your own home.
As so many affiliate marketing stats have shown, merchants taking part in affiliate programs see more opportunities to break into new markets and boost traffic fast. Arguably the greatest benefit of them all is that affiliate marketing is performance based, so you won’t pay a dime unless the desired action has taken place.
See? It’s a win-win. On top of this long list of benefits, when you add in the above-mentioned affiliate marketing statistics, you can see why the future of this industry is so bright.