Introduction Affiliate Marketing Trends
Affiliate Marketing is considered to be one of the most profitable areas of internet marketing. This is why you need to keep up with the best affiliate marketing trends for the next year.
It involves promoting an online business with the help of affiliated partners (webmasters) who attract new customers using a variety of marketing tools and strategies.
Unsurprisingly, almost every high-profile online store or brand has its affiliate program – around 10% of the profits in the e-commerce sector worldwide come from affiliate marketing. In the USA this figure is even higher – 15%.
Affiliate marketing in general allows you to significantly increase your ROI and generate higher profits – it benefits both partners and business owners.
This area is actively developing, which is reflected in the number of affiliate programs and webmasters working in this sector. While the previous years were challenging for many businesses, the affiliate channel is still a trusted source of traffic and sales for brands.
The approximate cost of the affiliate marketing sector is $ 12 billion, this figure will increase to $ 13-16 billion. These dynamics are justified: the statistics of the Hosting Tribunal service indicate that next year expenses on affiliate marketing will increase by 10 %.
The outgoing year has greatly influenced the alignment of forces in affiliate marketing niches – some of them have become less profitable, while the popularity of others has skyrocketed.
At the same time, more and more forms, tools, and programs of affiliate marketing are emerging, so we will see many new changes and trends in this sector.
How will affiliate marketing change and what should you look out for? Let’s find out.
What changes to expect?
It’s safe to say that affiliate marketing is on the rise, although trends and methods of driving traffic have evolved, especially after the coronavirus has significantly impacted our lifestyles. As more occurrences move online, affiliate marketing is becoming more and more applicable.
It is already clear that since many areas of our lives are directly or indirectly affected by the spread of the coronavirus, websites will receive more traffic through home-related searches. This effect will continue in the coming years, but it will be rather uneven.
For example, if you are promoting a website that sells industrial equipment or items related to outdoor work (for example, bicycles), then the conversion rate may drop significantly.
But home exercise equipment, on the contrary, will be relevant. As such, affiliate marketing strategies will need to be adjusted to create more content on topics that visitors will see as relevant.
The second half of 2020 saw a drop in ad revenue, especially in the real estate sector, where ROI declined by 20%. Some businesses may face huge drops in organic traffic. Therefore, experts advise against relying only on advertising revenues.
Affiliate marketing, on the other hand, is becoming more automated, substantial income can be derived from SEO. For example, platforms like BrightEdge can generate 60% more traffic through SEO automation.
With affiliate marketing, it is more important to gain customer trust. Also, affiliate marketers should be more aware of seasonal trends and watch for trends. Seasonal advertising will go a long way as more companies use consumer data to promote their products.
Marketing trends are changing speedily, and it is not always possible to anticipate them. However, a quick response to them largely determines the success of advertising promotion.
For instance, on the popular GrabOn platform, the offer of online courses has increased remarkably in 2020 with the introduction of a quarantine regime. Only by searching for distance learning programs, the service managed to attract 210% more traffic.
More B2B companies are launching their affiliate programs and now affiliate marketing is no longer limited to B2C campaigns -. And their popularity is expected to grow significantly in coming years.
Affiliate programs for web hosting are especially profitable given their favorable terms and high payouts, which is why you should pay attention to them in the coming year.
What do the experts say?
When it comes to advertising, it is very important to experiment, as not only trends change, but also people’s perceptions. Therefore, to get high conversions, you need to keep up with the time.
What will be relevant according to experts?
Many experts point out the need to increase investment in social networks. According to HootSuite’s Social Trends study, 61% of marketers are looking to increase their investment on Instagram, 46% on Facebook, 45% on YouTube, and 44% on LinkedIn.
Instagram promotion specialist and author of The Instagram Ivy League course Alex Tubi states,
“I predict that even gyms and yoga studios will offer online lessons in a variety of formats, from free Instagram streams and Zoom sessions to live broadcasts on their platforms. Many brands also benefit from e-commerce, but this was not the case for brick-and-mortar stores. This will change. As social media platforms such as Instagram and Facebook successfully integrate shopping experiences, they will be the platform for customer acquisition for small and medium-sized retail businesses. ”
Tara Zirker, the founder of Successful Ads Club and expert on social media advertising, emphasizes that advertising formats will become more diverse:
“Facebook (and Instagram) advertising will be more creative than ever before. There are three trends in Facebook advertising that advertisers will experiment with and succeed: GIF animations, user-generated content, and collages. ”
Video advertising is becoming more and more popular and practical every year. Salma Jafri, a video ad expert, says of YouTube advertising promotion:
“As YouTube attracts more niche businesses, it is becoming more personality-driven. This means that to attract a loyal audience, you need to demonstrate unique personal qualities, style, and everything that distinguishes you and your product from competitors with the help of content. “
The pandemic has had a significant impact on consumer behavior. The changes that followed it are largely irreversible – companies are unlikely to abandon the option of providing remote services, and over the past year, people have managed to form new consumer habits.
In this regard, Josh Braaten of marketing agency Brandata notes the importance of timely response to changes in consumer behavior:
“Feedback in the form of surveys, testing and quizzes will help determine whether changes in behavior are temporary or permanent.”
Based on this, it will be necessary to use this data for the timely correction of promotion strategies.
The next key trend is increasing email marketing personalization. Natalie Jackson of emfluence Marketing Platform says:
“Email is so reliable that almost every day is Cyber Monday. I guess that users will receive more promotional emails. But to get their attention, you need to double down on personalization and make sure you send emails that are timely, personalized, and responsive to the customer’s needs. “
Marketing personalization will not only attract customers but also increase their loyalty – 80% of users confirmed that they are more likely to do business with a company that offers a personalized approach.
What else will help you win a trustworthy audience? The coming years will be years of storytelling, says KindredSpeak marketer Sarah Panus:
“A sense of belonging is the fastest way to connect with your audience. Storytelling works best in this regard. From my own experience, I was convinced that it helps to improve the results by 7 times, as it builds trust and stimulates sales growth. This is why brands will invest more in storytelling in coming years.”
What niches will be popular?
2020 has significantly influenced the balance of power among promising partner verticals. If at the beginning of the year, categories such as fashion, sports, health and beauty products, and travel topped the list, then at the end of the year, consumers have largely revised their priorities. Which niches should you look out for?
The idea of online learning has always been present, but the occurrences of 2020 made it clear how important this trend is. More than half of the population – students, adults, and children – were in quarantine, and everyone had a crucial need to spend more time on the Internet.
Today, more and more people are looking for ways to fulfill their daily responsibilities and needs, such as work and education.
And now online learning platforms are progressively being used for this. It is not worth looking forward to the disappearance of this trend after the end of quarantine – a lot of people have firmly realized all the pros of remote work and have already tried online learning/training.
Therefore, affiliate networks offering online courses will be one of the most promising choices in terms of advertising promotion.
Home entertainment affiliate programs will also be very popular. What does it include? These are various streaming platforms, online cinemas, music services, online games, etc.
The online entertainment industry is now more popular than ever: the activity of users on the Internet is rapidly increasing, we can confidently say that this is a long-term trend. In other words, anything you can do at home will remain popular.
Work from home
Over the past years, the labor market has changed: tons of people have begun to give a desire to remote employment and freelancing.
Therefore, websites that offer relevant jobs in the field of freelance exchanges, as well as work from home, are included in the list of the most promising sectors of affiliate marketing.
This niche covers a wide range of affiliate programs: job search services, resume writing, applications for remote work – just a part of it. It also includes a variety of proposals for creating a comfortable working environment – delivery services, cybersecurity software, digital tools, etc.
eCommerce is one of those industries that never seems to lose its relevance. However, when looking at affiliate programs of online stores, it is necessary to choose those that offer products that are applicable in these conditions.
For example, clothing and accessories from brands are still a must for most users, but camping and tourism products are not the best options.
Web hosting is one of the most popular categories of affiliate marketing. Every site needs hosting, this niche has high potential. Why should you pay attention to it?
First, there are high customer retention rates because people seldomly move from one hosting provider to another.
Secondly, this niche is gorgeous due to favorable conditions for publishers and high commission payments.
However, it is not advisable to go for the one with the highest payouts when it comes to choosing the best web hosting affiliate program. Reliability, quality resources, program conditions, and speed are much more important here.
Effective advertising promotion and lead generation
Over the past year, lead generation and advertising strategies have become of great importance: If earlier you could rely on several proven channels, now it is recommended to experiment with different strategies and cover as many platforms as possible.
What should you pay attention to?
Content marketing on websites is a cost-effective method by which you can drive quality traffic to your blog and gain a trustworthy audience.
Blogs provide an outstanding opportunity to show your expertise in a specific niche: any blog post that solves a visitor’s problem will grab their attention.
Blogs are a great place for the native content we talked about above: they allow you to recommend, not to impose; attract customers through useful information, not advertising.
Why is it worth turning to a blog as a method of promotion?
People tend to buy what they trust: they trust experts who offer constructive solutions.
Clients are eager to partner with a business that is capable of effectively solving their problems. Case studies are an excellent way to demonstrate your expertise and reliability. And it is also a good advertising channel that can provide you with high-quality targeted traffic.
When potential customers study your case studies, they will trust your company when it comes to purchasing specific products or services. Case studies can help you uncover brand value and build audience loyalty.
Webinars are a successful tool for captivating a target audience. They also help build brand trust from existing customers.
Statistics show that 73% of marketers prefer webinars as an advertising method when it comes to attracting new customers.
It is recommended that you schedule your webinar at least three weeks in advance, as well as properly cover it – make a preview on social media, partner blog posts, launch an email newsletter, etc.
This is because about 46% of webinar participants apply for it less than a week before the event.
By sharing your expertise in this format, you can get the contact details of your participants and connect with them later to expand your sales funnel.
One of the most relevant types of advertising will be video – 2020 showed that it is a more effective tool for driving traffic than traditional advertising. A study by Wyzowl shows that more than 72% of people want to learn about new products through videos.
Plus, visitors are more likely to remember a call to action and respond to it within the video format – about 84% of customers tend to buy something after they’ve watched a video.
By using video ads, content creators will be more inclined to reach out to brands before filming a video. Bloggers will also be looking forward to partnering with big companies since the strategy of combining blogging and affiliate marketing has proven to work and be profitable for both parties.
Blog posts, guides, infographics, and videos do not always allow you to have all the applicable information on a particular topic. Sometimes you would want to cover a specific topic in detail.
This is because not everyone will want to spend time searching for information on the desired topic on the internet. This is why content marketing through e-books comes in.
This method of promotion can simultaneously bring high-quality leads and build trust in the brand because it is generally believed that only specialists with deep knowledge in a particular field can write a book.
Many content sites offer their users access to an e-book on a topic that interests them by subscribing to the service’s newsletter. ebooks can combine all the posts on your website on a specific topic.
Ebooks are convenient, and they allow you to collect email addresses for email marketing and growing your sales funnel.
Podcasts have become an essential part of everyday life, people are getting used to listening to them while doing their daily routine. Why not make podcasts part of your promotion strategy? This is exactly what should be expected.
According to a study done by Music Oomph, nearly a third of people between the ages of 25 and 34 listen to podcasts. About 700,000 Facebook business pages already use podcasts for marketing promotion.
Podcasts are not as popular yet compared to other content marketing tools, but at the same time, they help to stand out from the competition and easily gain popularity.
Since podcasts are often mobile-friendly, this opens up great opportunities for driving mobile traffic which has increased over the years.
Email marketing is a cost-efficient way to drive traffic with a high return on investment. The open rate for the personalized email from a brand can be as high as 82% and they will not lose their relevance anytime soon.
Triggered emails allow you to expand your sales funnel. This method of promotion is especially relevant for online stores. Studies show that sending three emails about an abandoned cart can lead to an increase in orders by 69%.
Moreover, mailings can be combined with other types of advertising, for example, by integrating video into them – the CTR in this case can increase up to 300%.
According to data from Statista, 49% of people surveyed said they would like to receive personalized promotional emails from their trusted brands. Newsletters/email marketing are a good way to get the word out.
Affiliate Marketing: Why is it trending?
In a sector like digital marketing in which if you blink, you get lost and a world that does not stop changing, the question of many marketers is logical:
Why should a brand/company participate in an affiliate system? Am I missing a powerful opportunity?
Here are the 4 keys for which yes. You should get on the wave as soon as possible.
Here are some of the reasons:
It remains stable
There is a dormant concern among the large marketers in the market:
“What is happening with digital marketing?”
It is not worth investments in marketing strategies that a few months ago brought awesome results. The level has risen.
In addition, Apple’s new privacy restrictions with IOS14 have put the entire Instagram and Facebook advertising system in control. And the same is also happening with Google, it has already started banning advertising cookies.
Advertisers and agencies are lost. Everything is reeling. Given this, affiliate marketing has become a predictable and stable sector in which you can easily project results.
You only pay if you sell
This is where affiliate marketing is unbeatable against other digital strategies.
You will no longer be paying for views or traffic to your blog. The affiliate model is the most profitable thing for marketers since it only pays for macro conversions: ie. lead or sales.
This is what is called Results Marketing. It provides the highest Return on Investment (ROI) because it does not waste a single coin on underperforming stocks.
If the marketers sell through an affiliate link, they pay a commission. If not, keep your budget.
Goodbye to unproductive advertising channels where paid traffic doesn’t turn into sales, but still comes at a cost.
Trust is (even) more important
Users are increasingly concerned about the abuse of their private data on the internet and there is a credibility crisis in traditional advertising.
Therefore, the customer prefers the softer approach to content marketing, one that provides value and educates without being invasive
In this context, content creators with high-quality content and have a trustworthy audience are essential for advertising brands. These recommendations help in transferring their credibility and integrity to their brand.
Our advice: Build relationships with your affiliates early, as these influencers will be highly sought after in the coming year.
In the face of saturation, the consumer wants it easy
The emergence of eCommerce has caused the online buying of goods and services to be wider than ever.
There is saturation in the market of very similar products.
And what may seem like a benefit to the online shopper is becoming a great problem.
Have you ever gone to a large hypermarket to buy a simple yogurt and found yourself in front of more than 30 options? Which one to keep? Too many options. Too many variables.
Having more than two similar options to choose from generates choice paralysis.
What you need are recommendations. Someone with the voice and experience to filter the noise out for you and save you time by telling you what to choose (to choose well). An affiliate is a perfect solution.
It is still a little exploited channel
Anyone who is serious about the digital marketing business knows that finding a new technique that makes money is like hitting the jackpot in the lottery.
And that is what Affiliate Marketing is today. A top-notch ticket that many people have yet to discover.
Because although in the US 83% of businesses already sell thanks to membership, in Spain it is a channel (still) little exploited.
Did you know that for the brands that use new sales channels early before they become saturated, their results always skyrocket?
That is why it is said that the best opportunities are available to those who are not afraid to make decisions.
Affiliate marketing is an extremely profitable branch of digital marketing for both marketers and advertisers, as it allows them to increase their sales by paying only for outcomes.
All you need to do is give affiliate marketing a try. And the safest way to do that is by joining a good affiliate platform with an amazing reputation.
The world of marketing is diverse, and is developing dynamically as never before – 2020 made it clear that trends can change very quickly, and what was relevant yesterday may lose popularity today.
You need to be more careful in planning your marketing strategies and choose your affiliate programs carefully because some trends can take you by surprise.
Here are some tactics to help you succeed in affiliate marketing campaigns:
- Always monitor and analyze the current market trends. This will protect you against unforeseen market fluctuations;
- Investing in a wide variety of affiliate programs will provide you with a reserve that you can rely on in case some affiliate programs turn out to be less profitable or lose their relevance;
- Short-term viral trends will only help you make good profits in a short time.
- It is necessary to take into account the current demand and monitor seasonal trends;
- Affiliate marketing automation will seriously increase your revenue;