10 November 2014
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The Affiliate Marketing Trends For 2015

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With 2014 drawing to a close, online marketers around the world are looking forward to the new year and the wave of online marketing techniques that are being developed with it.

According to Forbes, content marketing is set to be “bigger than ever” in 2015, and as such, affiliate marketing is one of the sub-sections of this promotional strategy.

The process involves using mailing lists, user-targeted content or promotional click-throughs to direct users to another person’s website. So for example, a fashion blog may be discussing the latest clothing trends for the season, and mention examples of a partner’s products on its content page. The blog host will then receive a percentage of the revenue for every purchase made by users who have been directed through that site.

Rather than traditional banner advertising, which may seem invasive and overly promotional, affiliate marketing has been proven to be highly lucrative for both publishers and the e-commerce sites with which they are partnered. The Daily Mail, for example, now has affiliate marketing deals with between 90 and 95 per cent of high street fashion retailers. When reporters mentioned a Hobbs Dalmatian print dress as worn by the Duchess of Cambridge in an article, the dress sold out within two hours.

So now that we know how affiliate marketing works, how can we use it to our advantage for 2015? One of the first lessons that marketers have learned from the practice is that it should be made as simple as possible for affiliates; too often has complicated jargon deterred web hosts who could simply be guided in the right direction by a team of experienced linkbuilders.

Traffic quality is another one to watch for 2015. While many businesses who are trying affiliate marketing for the first time are choosing to try it in-house, there really is no better alternative than sourcing a third party to ensure quality traffic is directed towards your site. This has been particularly noticeable in the online gaming industry; for example, Jackpot City uses a third party affiliate program with Buffalo Partners to ensure it is targeting the right audience.

Finally, in 2015, affiliate marketers will be working harder to push their incentives to make sure they are driving traffic to their sites. 2015 is set to bring “more intelligent use of incentivised traffic” which, in Layman’s terms, can be anything from cashback incentives to voucher websites. It’s important to establish a balance between natural content and promotional material, though web hosts can guarantee this by ensuring they use effective longtail keywords which both engage and incentivise the reader.

With more than 500 websites being launched every minute around the world, content truly is king when it comes to online marketing – the real trick is ensuring you use it to your advantage to target your relevant audience.

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