Cutting through the sea of Jargon and learning the Lingo, is the first step to mastering affiliate marketing!
Are you frustrated to come across terms like CPL, CR, and CTR without ever understanding what they mean?
Our team has compiled a comprehensive A-Z affiliate marketing glossary of terms and definitions to help you understand it all.
The A-Z Affiliate Marketing Glossary of Terms
An individual or company that promotes a product or service in exchange for a commission on any resulting sales.
The contract between an advertiser and an affiliate outlines the terms and conditions of their partnership.
A marketing strategy in which a company rewards affiliates for promoting their products or services and generating sales.
The process of assigning credit for a sale to the appropriate affiliate or marketing channel.
Alternative text, commonly known as alt text, describes an image used as a substitute in case the image cannot be displayed.
Application Programming Interface that allows users to access data for developing applications and conducting automated searches. It can be integrated directly or using tools like Zapier and Segment.
Refers to the visible words in an affiliate text link linked to the affiliate link.
A ranking system provided by alexa.com that is based on browsing behavior. It utilizes a data panel that represents all internet users and is reasonably accurate, although it can be expensive.
The average amount of money customers spend in a single transaction is used to calculate commissions for affiliates.
A/B split testing, often referred as A/B testing, compares two variants of a webpage or a sales page to see which one achieves better results.
A website or online platform with written content, often related to a particular niche or topic.
An individual who creates and maintains a blog, often producing written content in exchange for compensation from advertisers or through affiliate marketing.
An incentive or reward offered to affiliates for achieving specific performance metrics, such as a minimum number of sales or clicks.
The percentage of website visitors who navigate away from a site after viewing only one page is often used as a metric for evaluating website performance and user engagement.
An individual or influencer who promotes a brand or product through social media like Instagram and Facebook, blogs, or other marketing channels, often in exchange for compensation or commission.
A software program that adds functionality or features to a web browser, often used by affiliates to track links and commissions.
A marketing model in which businesses sell products or services to other companies rather than directly to consumers (B2C).
The base commission is the publicly stated compensation for a program
A set of practices used to improve a website or page's search engine ranking through means that violate the search engine's terms of service. SEOs often use these tactics in highly competitive niches that offer high returns. But, they can result in a Google penalty as search engines become more adept at recognizing them.
A sub-network, typically used to quickly generate additional sales, often uses a Lead generation format, particularly in pharma, solar, and CBD verticals. Advertisers usually do not know where or how their offer is promoted, which can result in a significant brand risk.
A prompt or message that encourages website visitors or readers to take a specific action, such as clicking a link or making a purchase.
A coordinated marketing effort designed to achieve specific business goals, often including online advertising, email marketing, and affiliate promotions.
A transaction reversal in which a commission paid to an affiliate is returned to the advertiser due to fraud, invalid transactions, or customer disputes.
The percentage of website visitors who click on a specific link or advertisement is often used as a metric for evaluating the effectiveness of marketing campaigns.
AThe payment made to an affiliate for promoting and generating sales for an advertiser's product or service.
The percentage of a sale paid to an affiliate as a commission. This rate may also include network fees and other charges.
A small file stored on a user's device that tracks their activity on a website and allows for attribution of sales and commissions to specific affiliates
The unethical practice of secretly placing affiliate cookies on a user's computer without their knowledge or consent to earn commissions fraudulently.
An affiliate marketing payment model in which affiliates are paid based on the number of customers they refer who complete a specific action, such as making a purchase or signing up for a service.
The cost for every click made on an ad. For example, an affiliate chooses to pay CPC. the ad exchange will serve the affiliate's ad (impressions) but he only pays each time the customer actually clicks on the ad. In contrast, with CPM where the affiliate pays for 1000 impressions regardless of the customer clicking on the ad.
The primary pricing model for mobile app and game installations-how much you get when someone installs the app.
Refers to the cost of every thousand impressions.
Like CPM, a cost is incurred each time an ad is displayed. calculated by the total cost of advertisement divided by the total number of views or impressions.
Refers to a website or group of websites that produce much low-quality content, primarily designed to generate traffic from search engines but with poor conversion rates.
Links that are embedded within the content of an article or webpage. This term is commonly used to describe linking technologies such as Skimlinks and Digidip.
A successful action performed by a customer, such as a subscription, lead, or sale, is called a conversion.
The percentage of visitors who perform the desired action after clicking through to a website. For example, if three out of every hundred visitors make a purchase, the conversion rate is 3%.
The percentage of a sale paid to an affiliate as a commission. This rate may also include network fees and other charges.
Refers to any editorial-style article, such as a blog post, review, video, or social media post. Advertisers may provide general content for affiliates or create bespoke content for their top affiliates.
Publishers who create specific web content targeted at their audience with a high conversion rate due to their loyal readership.
The practice of hiding a webpage's content or an affiliate tracking code can result in penalties from Google.
Refers to a user clicking on a text link or banner on a website.
It's the number of affiliates who have registered at least one click during a reporting period, as opposed to the total number of registered affiliates.
It's the practice of generating fake clicks to earn money in a CPC-based program, which can result in affiliates being banned from affiliate networks.
Refers to the clicks a consumer makes before making a purchase. Attribution modeling is used to reward affiliates at all stages of the customer journey.
Websites that offer consumers cashback in exchange for a desired action, such as a sale.
The reversal of a commission, usually in the case of rev-share payment models (people cancel).
Refers to the US email compliance rules that require commercial messages to include opt-out options and other measures to prevent unsolicited emails.
An affiliate link that directs users to a specific page or product on an advertiser's website rather than to the homepage.
echnologies are used to protect digital content from unauthorized access or distribution.
A promotional strategy in which affiliates place links directly to an advertiser's website without using a landing page or pre-sell page.
The requirement for affiliates to disclose their partnership with advertisers and the receipt of compensation for promotional activities in compliance with relevant laws and regulations.
A metric used to evaluate the strength and authority of a website, often used by affiliates to assess the value of potential promotional partnerships.
A marketing process in which subscribers must confirm their subscription via email is often used to ensure that subscribers are engaged and interested in receiving promotional materials. (basically you put in your email and then they send you a mail and you confirm it is you).
A retail fulfillment method in which the retailer does not keep products in stock but instead forwards customer orders and shipment details to the manufacturer, supplier, or another retailer, who then ships the product directly to the customer.
Content appearing on multiple websites or pages is often penalized by search engines and discouraged in affiliate marketing.
Platforms where digital advertising inventory can be bought. These platforms buy and sell ad slots from a large inventory of different ad platforms in real-time.
PROS: This is practical as you can buy ads from all different exchanges in one place and in real time. Good to test the traffic before going direct to the desired ad platform.
Cons: Quality can be bad since the DSP platform is a middleman, sometimes buying remnants (unwanted leftover traffic) to cut costs. Best to go direct to the individual platforms to get better and cheaper traffic.
It is a notice or page used by affiliates to ensure that visitors are fully informed that purchasing suggestions or product endorsements may be monetized. It is essential for complying with FTC laws.
Usually refers to websites that display affiliate banner ads and/or videos on a cost-per-thousand-impressions (CPM) basis.
Data file or API (application programming interface) that provides a complete list of an advertiser's inventory, including SKUs (“stock keeping unit”), descriptions, images, and product prices.
Focus primarily on discount coupons, vouchers, or other incentives. They are sometimes referred to as a hybrid of a coupon and content partner.
A metric used to evaluate the profitability of affiliate promotion is calculated as the earnings generated divided by the number of clicks.
The percentage of users who interact with content, such as liking, commenting, or sharing, is often used as a metric for evaluating the effectiveness of social media marketing.
A promotional offer available only to a specific group of affiliates or customers is often used to incentivize performance or build loyalty.
A technology used to detect when a website visitor is about to leave a page or site and present them with a targeted message or offer.
A domain name that has not been renewed by its owner and is no longer active or available for registration.
A hyperlink that directs users to a different website or domain, often used by affiliates to promote third-party products or services.
A list of updated content or data that third-party applications or websites can use to display real-time information, often used in affiliate marketing to display product or price updates.
The intentional or deceptive act of falsifying information, creating fake accounts, or generating invalid leads or sales in affiliate marketing for personal gain.
The Federal Trade Commission is a US government agency that regulates and enforces consumer protection laws, including guidelines for affiliate marketing disclosures.
A marketing strategy or process that guides website visitors or users through a series of steps toward a specific goal is often used to increase conversions or sales.
A limit on the number of times a specific advertisement or promotional message is shown to a single user within a particular period of time.
A statement used by affiliates to disclose their relationship with advertisers and the receipt of compensation for promotional activities in compliance with FTC guidelines and regulations.
A commission structure in which affiliates receive a set amount or percentage of sales or leads generated, regardless of the volume or value of sales.
These are files containing information about all the products an advertiser sells. They usually include details such as SKU (“stock keeping unit”) , images, descriptions, and prices.
In some affiliate programs, the first affiliate link that a visitor clicks on and that results in a sale is the one that is awarded the commission. This is often popular with bloggers and influencers.
A marketing strategy that delivers targeted advertising or content based on the user's geographic location is often used to increase relevance and engagement.( makes sense ,we don't want to pay for ads for people who live in Alaska, for a powerful air conditioning system)
A program by Google that allows website owners to monetize their traffic by displaying targeted ads on their pages.
A free web analytics service by Google that provides detailed statistics and insights about website traffic and user behavior.
A free tool by Google that helps website owners monitor and optimize their website's performance in search engine results.
A metric used by ClickBank, a popular affiliate network, to indicate the popularity and sales potential of a product or service.The gravity number indicates the quantity of sales made in the past month.
A marketing strategy in which an affiliate or marketer writes and publishes a blog post on another website or blog to reach a wider audience and increase exposure.
A set of regulations by the European Union that cover email marketing. Additional information can be found on the EU website.
Refers to SEO techniques that may not fully comply with Google's guidelines but are not as extreme as Black Hat techniques. These techniques aim to increase website traffic, but recent updates by Google are more effective at detecting them and may result in penalties.
A word or phrase preceded by the # symbol used to categorize and index social media posts, often used in affiliate marketing to increase visibility and engagement.
A markup language (hypertext mark up language) used to create and format content on web pages, often used by affiliates to develop and embed tracking links or promotional banners.
A product or service that is relatively expensive or has a high-profit margin, is often used in affiliate marketing to generate more significant commissions. can be in the order of $300-$50,000 as a rough idea.
A software or service provided by a third-party provider that handles the technical aspects of affiliate tracking and management, often used by advertisers or merchants to simplify their affiliate programs.
A commission structure that combines both a fixed commission and a variable commission is often used to incentivize high-performance affiliates while ensuring a minimum level of compensation.
A clickable link that directs users to another web page or online resource is often used in affiliate marketing to drive traffic and promote products or services.
An instance of an ad being displayed on a web page or social media platform counts as an impression.Used as a metric to measure the reach and effectiveness of a campaign. Note : an impression doesn't mean that anyone has taken any noticed or clicked on your ad!
A marketing strategy that uses rewards or incentives to motivate customers or affiliates to take a desired action, is often used in affiliate marketing to boost sales or referrals. For example collect an email for a free ebook, fill in your details to participate in a chance to win a prize.
An affiliate program managed and operated by the advertiser or merchant in-house is often used to maintain greater control over the program and reduce costs. For example an affiliate network may have created their own product and would offer this to their affiliates as an "in-house offer"
A marketing strategy that uses influencers or individuals with a large following on social media (FB. Instagram, TikToc, Pinterest, Linkedin etc.) to promote products or services is often used in affiliate marketing to drive sales or referrals.
A digital product such as an e-book, course, or webinar that provides information or education on a specific topic, is often used in affiliate marketing as a product to promote.
A unique identifier (IP-Internet Protocol) is assigned to each device connected to the internet.
A partnership between two or more individuals or companies for a specific business purpose is often used in affiliate marketing to collaborate on product launches or promotions.
Technical terminology or specialized language used in a particular industry or field used in affiliate marketing to describe specific concepts or metrics.
A file format commonly used for digital images, often used by affiliates to display product images or promotional banners. Often used because of its small files for quick-loading landing pages and websites.
A web page designed to redirect users to another page or website is used in affiliate marketing to track clicks or conversions.
The percentage of times a keyword appears in a piece of content used in affiliate marketing to optimize content for search engines.
A short statement or phrase used to capture the reader's attention is often used in affiliate marketing to introduce a product or promotion.
A web page designed to receive and convert traffic from a specific marketing campaign or promotion.
A potential customer who has expressed interest in a product or service.
Attracting and converting potential customers into leads through emails , surveys , quizzes, win Prizes, incentives ( eg. exchange email for free ebook) is often used in affiliate marketing to drive traffic and sales.
A clickable element that directs users to another web page or resource.
Disguising an affiliate link to make it appear more user-friendly and trustworthy is often used in affiliate marketing to increase click-through rates.
The value or authority passed from one web page to another through links often used in affiliate marketing to improve search engine rankings.
The total revenue a customer is expected to generate over their entire relationship with a business is often used in affiliate marketing to determine the value of a customer and inform marketing strategies.
The individual or company owns the product or service an affiliate promotes.
The minimum amount of earnings required for an affiliate to receive payment.
An affiliate marketing model that allows affiliates to earn commissions on the sales of other affiliates they refer to the program.
An influencer with a smaller following (typically between 1,000 and 100,000) with a highly engaged audience can provide targeted marketing opportunities for brands and affiliate marketers.
Data is used to measure and analyze the performance of a marketing campaign or strategy, often used in affiliate marketing to track clicks, conversions, and other key performance indicators.
The process of guiding a potential customer through the stages of awareness, interest, decision, and action, is often used in affiliate marketing to improve conversion rates and maximize earnings.
A specialized market segment that caters to a specific audience or need.
A company or platform that connects affiliates with merchants and manages the affiliate marketing process.
Advertising that blends in with the content of a website or platform, often used in affiliate marketing to increase engagement and conversions.
A regularly distributed email containing news, updates, and promotional content.
A link with a "no-follow" attribute, which tells search engines not to pass link equity to the destination page, is often used in affiliate marketing to prevent link spam and maintain search engine rankings.
The product, service, or promotion being advertised or sold is used in affiliate marketing to refer to a specific product or service being promoted.
Refers to the process of analyzing elements that influence the placement of a website or web page in organic search results (Google , Bing, YouTube etc.) and adjusting those factors as necessary.
These aspects are considered off-site since neither you nor the code that is present on your website has any influence on them. Page rank and link popularity are a couple of examples.
The process of obtaining permission from a website visitor or subscriber to receive promotional emails or other marketing messages.
The website traffic comes from search engines or other non-paid sources.
A link from one website to another website.
An advertising model in which advertisers pay a fee each time a user clicks on one of their ads.
An affiliate marketing model in which affiliates are paid a commission for each lead (such as an email sign-up, or other information such as age or a survey etc) they generate this requested info for the advertiser and the affiliate is not required to make a direct sale with PPL.
An affiliate marketing model in which affiliates are paid a commission for each sale they generate for the advertiser or merchant.
Honors are often given out in connection with Affiliate Summit; however, it seems that they have been put on hold lately.
This is a ranking system used by Google to measure the importance of web pages. It considers the number and quality of links pointing to a particular page and is used to determine the order in which search results are displayed.
This refers to paying for ads to appear on search engine results pages (SERPs). Advertisers bid on keywords and phrases relevant to their products or services, and their ads are displayed when users search for those terms.
This refers to an increase in commission or payout that an affiliate receives for achieving a certain level of performance or sales. This is a common incentive used by advertisers to motivate their affiliates.
This is the minimum amount of earnings an affiliate must accumulate before receiving a payout from the advertiser. This threshold varies depending on the advertiser and the payment method used.
An umbrella term encompasses various marketing models(usually the marketer or affiliate pays for traffic ads) in which affiliates are paid for specific actions, such as clicks, leads, or sales, rather than simply displaying ads. Performance marketing vs digital marketing
A piece of code placed on a website to track user behavior is often used in affiliate marketing to track clicks, conversions, and other key performance indicators.
A metric used by Google to determine how well a particular keyword aligns with the advertising text, query, and landing page.
Affiliates generally use this term for every 3 months of the year.Q1 would include Jan,Feb and March. Certain periods of the year are good for certain products. For example, Weight loss products sell better in Q1 and Q2. Advertising gets more expensive in Q3 and Q4 since big brand names push hard at Christmas, therefore the advertising bids are higher.
A comprehensive evaluation report of an affiliate program, including performance data and any changes that have occurred during the previous quarter. A network usually prepares the report and typically contains recommendations for the upcoming period.
Each individual user's click count is independent of route or destination.
A link exchange between two websites, where each website agrees to link to the other's website. This is done to increase website traffic and improve search engine rankings.
A process where a user is automatically redirected from one web page to another. In affiliate marketing, redirection can be used to track clicks and sales or to direct traffic to a specific landing page.
The domain name of the website that referred a visitor to another website. This information can be used to analyze website traffic and identify sources of referral traffic.
The specific web page URL that referred a visitor to another website. This information can be used to track clicks and optimize marketing campaigns.
A financial metric used to measure the profitability of an investment. ROI is calculated by dividing the total revenue generated by the total cost of the marketing campaign.
The total amount of money an affiliate earns from commissions or sales generated through their marketing efforts.
A commission structure in which affiliates are paid a percentage of the revenue generated by a merchant's sales rather than a fixed amount per sale.
A file that tells search engine robots which pages or directories of a website they are allowed to crawl and index.
A type of advertising campaign where ads are placed on a network of websites without specific targeting. This is usually used when the goal is to reach a large audience without targeting particular demographics.
This can get you lots of traffic fast, but it is in your interest, to establish what sites are working quickly, otherwise you will be left with a big hole in your pocket!
A marketing strategy where affiliates target users who have previously visited their website or shown interest in their products or services.
A metric used to measure the effectiveness of advertising campaigns. It is calculated by dividing the revenue generated by the advertising campaign by the total cost of the campaign. eg your campaign brought in $30,000 and cost you $10,000 in ad spend, then the ROAS is 300% or ratio 3:1
A commission structure in which affiliates are paid a percentage of a customer's recurring payments over time, such as for a subscription or membership based program. It is often that the affiliate can choose between a "one off" commission (higher commission) or a recurring commission, which is much, smaller but it can compound over time.
The act of recommending a product or service to others is often used in affiliate marketing to generate leads and sales.
The cumulative earnings or statistics for a campaign.
Also known as a keyword or query, is a word or phrase that a user enters into a search engine to find relevant information or websites.
SERP stands for Search Engine Results Page. It refers to the page displayed by a search engine, such as Google or Bing, after a user enters a query into the search box.
Optimizing a website to rank higher in search engine results pages (SERPs).
ShareASale is an affiliate network that provides a platform for merchants and affiliates to connect and collaborate to find affiliate offers to promote .
An individual or company that promotes a merchant's products or services through an affiliate of the primary affiliate.
An affiliate marketer who generates a high volume of traffic and sales for a merchant or company. He is usually at the top of his game and typically generates at least $1,000000 per year in affiliate commissions.
Supply-Side Platforms are software platforms that enable publishers to manage and sell their advertising inventory to potential buyers. SSPs help publishers to optimize their ad space, increase their revenue and sell their inventory to multiple demand-side platforms (DSPs), networks, and advertisers.
Also known as crawlers or bots, are automated programs used by search engines to scan and index web pages on the internet. These spiders help search engines find new content and update their search index with new information.
Split testing, also known as A/B testing, compares two or more variations of a website or marketing campaign to determine which one performs better. By splitting traffic between different versions, marketers can identify which version generates more conversions, leads or sales.
A separate section of a website that operates independently of the main domain. Subdomains are commonly used to create different areas for blogs, e-commerce stores, or other types of content. Example main domain=foodblog.com sub-domain=vegetables.foodblog.com
A useful collection of pre-written copy, images, and other marketing materials that affiliates can use to promote products or services.
The specific group of people most likely to be interested in a merchant's products or services.
A technology affiliate is a person who is specialized in getting results for brands and businesses for example they can be employed to reduce cart abandonment, increase sales and conversions, reach new customer segments, and improve social media, tracking, etc. They are typically paid by the CPA model eg. every time they get a new customer etc.
A fixed payment is made by brands to secure a guaranteed position on a publisher's website. It's also known as a Placement Fee.
Text-Link-Ads basically, it is a hyper text link, embedded in a word or phrase, whereby the affiliate link will lead you to an offer or landing page.
Type of affiliate that promotes toolbar downloads. They earned a negative reputation in the 2000s for their use of adware installations.
A dynamically generated variable or placeholder used in URLs to track specific information in an ad campaign. Multiple tokens can be added to tracking software to help optimize campaigns, such as type of browser, operating systems, geo, state, etc.
Type of software located on a server other than your own. It records and tracks visits to your own website.
The number of visitors to a website or other online platform used to measure the effectiveness of various marketing channels and strategies.
An affiliate marketing program that offers commissions to primary affiliates and sub-affiliates who refer new affiliates to the program.
The agreement between a merchant and an affiliate outlines the terms and conditions of their affiliate relationship, including commission rates, payment schedules, and other relevant policies and guidelines.
A URL stands for (Uniform Resource Locators). It basically is the address assigned to a web page, website, just like a classic directory (Yellow Pages)
Refers to a visitor tagged with information about their IP address, browser ID, or other identification to distinguish them from other visitors. This helps with attribution, and they are considered unique users for a specific period, such as the duration of a cookie.
A feature commonly used by meta-publishers in the travel industry that allows consumers to purchase multiple product categories in a single transaction, such as flights, transfers, hotels, and more. While primarily used in travel, it can also be implemented in other areas of e-commerce.
To explain this we can imagine that a visitor will click a page ,product, website, ad etc. The visitor is identified by his IP address.When this visitor clicks on a page it will be registered as the one and only unique click. Even if he decides to click again on the page 100 times it will only be registered as a unique click.
A merchant or advertiser selling products or services with an affiliate program.
An affiliate marketing conversion model is where the affiliate is credited for a sale even if the customer doesn't click on their affiliate link but instead views an ad and then later makes a purchase on the merchant's site.
A marketing strategy that relies on word-of-mouth and social sharing to promote a product or service.
A unique code is given to affiliates to offer discounts to their audience.
The affiliates partner provides promotions and discounts to customers through digital coupons or vouchers, allowing them to receive a percentage off their order, free delivery, or gifts with specific purchases
A specific industry or market segment used to describe the types of products or services being promoted. Examples of verticals are: health, finance, food and drink, fitness, adult, self improvement etc.
Also known as a spider, it is a program that scans web pages to locate all the hyperlinks within them.
A small application or tool that can be added to a website or blog to promote a merchant's products or services and drive traffic to their site.
Transferring earned commissions from an affiliate program to the affiliate's account via a chosen payment method eg, bank transfer, PayPal, cheque, crypto etc.
Extensible Markup Language- markup language is a format used for documents and apps compatible with XML.
For example often data from analytics and tracking programs and apps, are downloaded using the XML format.
The total revenue generated by a marketing campaign or program.
A pricing strategy that maximizes revenue by adjusting prices based on market demand and other factors.
An individual who has a significant following on YouTube can influence their audience's opinions and purchase decisions.
In conclusion, this comprehensive glossary of affiliate marketing terms is an invaluable resource for seasoned marketers and industry newcomers.
Hence, this glossary is a treasure trove of marketing terminology, covering everything and providing crystal-clear definitions for each term.
By understanding the terminology used in affiliate marketing, you will gain the knowledge and confidence to easily navigate the landscape and maximize your earning potential.
The most challenging aspect of affiliate marketing is likely the time spent getting set up. This includes administrative work and communicating with vendors and different online platforms.
The most important thing in affiliate marketing is building trust and credibility with your audience by providing valuable content and promoting products that align with their needs and interests.
Everyone must know that affiliate marketing requires hard work, patience, and persistence to succeed; it's not a get-rich-quick scheme.
Affiliate marketers face challenges such as competition, changing market trends, platform algorithm changes, increasing costs and maintaining relevance and authenticity with their audience.
Affiliate marketing solves the problem of businesses needing a cost-effective way to reach a wider audience and increase sales while also providing an opportunity for individuals to earn passive income by promoting products they believe in.
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