From Wild Wild West to Trusted Channel – Technology Transforms Affiliate Marketing

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From Wild Wild West to Trusted Channel – Technology Transforms Affiliate Marketing Posted on Jan 24 by Brittany Christopher in Blog

Innovation has been a trademark of affiliate marketing from the beginning. The industry has pioneered a number of strategies and technologies for campaign tracking and analysis. Today it continues to make a lasting impression in the world of digital marketing and for good reason.

With a unique pay-for-performance structure, massive data volumes and razor-thin margins, affiliate marketing boasts impressive ROI, brand awareness and has relatively minimal risk. Worth £17 billion in the UK alone, this viable industry is an area of digital marketing that continues to evolve and grow.

The IAB’s Performance Affiliate Conference is this tomorrow, so we thought it would be an ideal time to take a step back and review how this dynamic area of digital marketing changed since its emergence in 1994. We have also illustrated the drivers behind the growth through the infographic below which highlights important benchmarks, trends and themes.

The Early Days

The Cost Per Acquisition (CPA) format used by most affiliate marketers was very appealing as there was relatively no risk involved for the advertisers, thus the concept of affiliate marketing quickly gained traction. However, as the rapidly evolving affiliate landscape grew, issues such as fraud, unreliable data and an overall lack of transparency transformed the industry into the Wild Wild West of digital marketing.

Some of the most common fraud tactics employed included:

Affiliates not properly vetted High-profile cookie stuffing Sophisticated

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