Affiliate Summit West 2014 is in full swing this morning. Our team is here, meeting with many affiliate advertisers and publishers, attending presentations and talking content strategy and workflow tools with as many as we can.
The day started with a killer keynote by Steve Denton of eBay Enterprise Media. With more than 5,400 attendees, the founder of the Affiliate Summit confirmed it’s the biggest summit yet!
@eZdia it is the biggest Affiliate Summit to date
— Shawn Collins (@affiliatetip) January 14, 2014
eZdia’s CEO, Alok Jain, chatting with Steve Denton after his Affiliate Summit Keynote.
Affiliate Marketing is 3rd Largest Ad Budget Spend, Behind PPC and Email.
Forecasted to reach $4.4 billion dollars in ad spend by 2016, affiliate marketing is expected to be the grounds for the next big thing in ecommerce.
Current traffic contributions of each affiliate segment show that while affiliates in the coupon category drive more than 50% of affiliate traffic, loyalty rewards drive about half that,
a solid 25% of traffic but pull their weight in demand as a result of high conversion rates and average order values. Online customers like loyalty rewards!
Don’t count out the “long tail” of affiliate publishers, there is a huge growth opportunity in the smaller affiliate categories too. Driving just 7% of the
demand and 24% of the traffic as a group, comparison shopping, social and niche content affiliate publishers are ripe for big growth in 2014.
Affiliates Drive New Customers
Nearly half of all customers who made a purchase through an affiliate site were new to the brand, with no purchases from in the last 12 months. Niche content publishers are leaders in the new customer rates, about 70% of customers purchasing through niche content sites are new to the brand. Coupon sites are behind Niche just a bit, yielding approximately 60% new customer rate.
Affiliate sites are seeing big gains in their purchase path position. With an average of 7 brand touches along a purchase path, affiliates are driving first touch conversions. More than 20% of the clicks that result in a purchase through affiliate sites are a result of one-touch from the brand.
Comparison Shopping leading the way in first touch conversions.
The online customer’s journey is multi-device. We connect differently when we are at home, at work, on-the-go or traveling. The affiliate shopper browsing at home from their mobile devices about 53% of the time, switching between desktop and mobile to browse for the same item and making purchased from their desktop computers. Here’s the slide Steve used during his keynote while speaking about the importance of optimizing your site for the multi-device customer purchasing journey.
The keynote was an awesome way to get our day rolling. Here are my top 3 takeaways:
1) Affiliate networks continue to prove their ability to influence online shoppers. This unique channel is growing quickly and is vying for more of your marketing budget.
2) Affiliate marketing is a rad place to find new customers. More than half of all customers shopping through an affiliate site are new (no purchases in last 12 months) to the brand they are purchasing from.
3) By 2016 mobile coupons will grow to be a $46B business. Integrate your corporate goals into your affiliate programs when considering your coupon/discount strategy.