30 Incredible Affiliate Marketing Statistics [2022]: Facts About Affiliate Marketing In The U.S.

By Jack Flynn
Oct. 19, 2022
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Research Summary. You don’t need to invent the next best product to become a successful entrepreneur. Affiliate marketing allows you to profit by advertising for other businesses. There’s a reason why this symbiotic relationship between businesses and marketers has become increasingly popular:

  • 81% of brands around the world now have affiliate programs

  • 16% of global ecommerce sales come from affiliate marketing

  • A considerable 81% of advertisers and 84% of publishers use affiliate marketing

  • 15% of the total revenue generated in digital media comes from affiliate marketing programs

  • Advertisers generate between 15%-30% of sales from affiliate marketing

  • U.S. affiliate marketing spending is expected to reach $8.2 billion by the end of 2022

  • 38% of marketers list affiliate marketing as their biggest marketing channel

For further analysis, we broke down the data in the following ways:
Top Methods | Trends and Projections | Marketer Opinions | Affiliate Opinions | Consumer Behavior
us affiliate marketing spending 2015-2022

General Affiliate Marketing Statistics

The newfound popularity of gig work and entrepreneurship has made affiliate marketing more popular than ever. As of 2022, most businesses rely on it to reach their customers. With that in mind, here are some general facts about affiliate marketing in the U.S. and across the world:

  • Globally, the affiliate market industry is worth roughly $12 billion.

    The U.S. holds a considerable market share: $4.5 billion (39% of the total affiliate marketing market). Other major players include the UK with 15% and Germany with 11%. All together, these three countries alone are home to 65% of the market.

  • As of 2021, affiliate marketing generates up to 25% of online sales for big brands.

    While some large businesses only receive 5% of their online sales from affiliate marketing, many can generate up to 25% of their online sales. For context, that means that if a business makes $5,000 in sales in one month, up to $1,250 of that would be thanks to affiliate marketing.

  • There are 11,400 affiliate programs in the U.S. alone.

    And of that 11,400, ShareASale is by far one of the largest networks. In total, ShareASale offers 5,594 programs, 49% of the total programs in the U.S.

16% of global ecommerce sales come from affiliate marketing

Affiliate Marketing Statistics By Top Methods

When it comes to affiliate marketing, not all methods are created equal. When most businesses attempt to use the industry to their advantage, it can be important to stand out from the crowd. Overall, our research shows that:

  • 64.48% of affiliate marketers generate traffic via blogging.

    Behind social media, which is used by 67.32% of affiliate marketers, blogging is an important source of traffic. That’s why blogging is one of the most common practices affiliate marketers use.

  • 75% of affiliate marketers list social media as their top traffic source.

    SEO is in second place, with 70% of marketers believing it’s their top traffic source. The third and fourth most commonly named for the most important traffic source are blogging and email marketing.

  • 79% of marketers use affiliate marketing to attract existing customers.

    You might think that marketing is meant to attract new customers, but attracting old customers is just as important for most affiliate marketers. That’s why over 2/3s of marketers gauge their marketing toward previous customers.

  • Blogs generate a considerable 40% of affiliate publisher commissions in the U.S.

    While blogging might not always be named as the most important affiliate marketing tactic, it is only of the most common to be commissioned. Marketers who know how to blog can expect a much easier time finding work, which is great in such a competitive industry!

  • 94% of publishers utilize multiple affiliate programs.

    Because many affiliate marketing investors are large businesses, it makes sense for them to invest in multiple marketing programs. That way, they can get more bang for their buck.

  • 39.42% of the affiliate marketing market involves Amazon.

    53% of all Amazon sales come from affiliate marketing, which is why Amazon has such a generous program. Other top players include ShareASale, Awin, CJ Affiliate, Rakuten Marketing, Avangate Affiliate Network, ClickBank, FlexOffers, Walmart Affiliates, and the eBay Partner Network.

The rise of affiliate marketing is deeply rooted in modern technologies, such as online shopping. After all, sites like Amazon and eBay didn’t exist 30 years ago. Knowing that, will modern technologies keep pushing affiliate marketing forward? According to our research:

  • From 2015 to 2020, affiliate marketing revenue has increased from $4.5 billion to $6.8 billion.

    That’s a massive revenue increase of 52% over only five years. Much of this growth can be attributed to the popularity of online businesses that now use affiliate marketing.

  • From 2015 to 2020, SEO-related searches for “affiliate marketing” have increased by 200%.

    The importance of search engines for affiliate marketers has grown rapidly within the past five years, as searches for the topic have doubled. That means that if 500,000 people searched the term in 2015, 1 million would be searching in 2020.

  • From 2015 through 2023, the affiliate marketing industry is expected to have a 10% growth rate.

    An impressive number, given that the overall U.S. advertising industry is only expected to have a growth rate of 4.4%. While affiliate marketing isn’t the same as advertising, it shows that the way we market and consume products is changing.

  • 23.27% of affiliate marketing is fashion-related.

    Fashion is the largest affiliate marketing niche, followed by Sports & Outdoors (18.16%), Health/Wellness & Beauty (13.81%), Travel (10.74%), and Home & Garden (8.7%) as the top 5.

  • Affiliate marketing spending doubled between 2015-2022.

    In 2015 $4.2 billion was spent on affiliate marketing, but today that number is up to $8.2 billion. That’s an increase of 195%.

Affiliate Marketing Statistics By Marketer Opinions

Marketers are individuals, and their opinions on affiliate marketing shed some light on it. They know what’s most popular and why. With that in mind, here are some facts about how marketers view affiliate marketing:

  • 40% of marketers say affiliate marketing is a crucial skill to have.

    That’s because affiliate marketing provides flexibility and new opportunities. With it, marketers can enjoy the freedom of doing commissions.

  • 67.32%% of affiliate marketers use social media to market.

    The most popular websites to market on include Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter. Overall, the use of social media for affiliate marketing is expected to increase as social media websites become more popular.

  • 83% of affiliate marketers use affiliate marketing to grow brand awareness.

    Further, 79% use it to drive conversions, increase purchases, and improve customer engagement. All three of these elements are ways affiliate marketing can foster success.

Affiliate Marketing Statistics By Affiliate Opinions

Affiliate marketing might be great for businesses, but how do affiliate marketers feel about it? To answer that, here are some facts about affiliate opinions:

  • 63% of affiliate marketers “strongly agree” that affiliate marketing is great for drawing in new customers.

    Another 27% also agree, just not as strongly. In fact, only 2% of those surveyed strongly disagreed that affiliate marketing is great for bringing in new customers.

  • most marketers think affiliate marketing brings in new customers

  • 54% of marketers “strongly agree” that affiliate marketing is very credible.

    Another 41% also agree, just not as strongly, while only 2% of those surveyed said they “strongly disagreed.” Interestingly, these stats hold steady whether marketers were asked about running affiliate programs or not running them.

    most marketers think affiliate marketing is credible

  • 20% of affiliates earn between $21,000-$80,000 annually.

    On the more extreme side, approximately 19% of marketers earn less than $20,000, and a considerable 19.5% earn at least $1 million. Many affiliate marketers have very high incomes compared to other wealth comparisons in the U.S.

average affiliate marketer income

Affiliate Marketing Statistics By Consumer Behavior

Unsurprisingly, affiliate marketing strategies are also affected by consumer behavior. After all, without consumers, there’d be no need for marketing. Here are some facts about how customer behavior affects affiliate marketing:

  • 87% of U.S. consumers now start their shopping experience online with product searches.

    And of that percentage, a massive 74% of consumers begin their product searches on Amazon, regardless of where they end up. That means that most shopping searches, online or not, actually begin on Amazon.

  • 81% of customers use online research methods like Google before purchasing a product.

    In fact, 70% of consumers use three channels or more when making a single purchase., and 86% of consumers will use at least two different channels. Overall, searching online allows consumers to compare prices, quality, and other important aspects of the product.

  • Affiliate marketing links receive over 5 billion clicks per year.

    These clicks result in consumers making more than 170 million transactions. That’s an overall conversion rate of 3.40%, higher than the average 1-2%.

Affiliate Marketing Statistics FAQ

  1. How big is the affiliate marketing industry?

    The affiliate marketing industry is big. As of 2022, the industry is worth approximately $12 billion, with the U.S. holding a considerable portion of the market share ($4.5 billion, 39% of the total affiliate marketing market). The UK and Germany are home to 65% of the market.

    Additionally, affiliate marketing is being used by more and more businesses and marketers. Today, 81% of advertisers use affiliate marketing, and 84% of publishers use it.

  2. How do affiliates get paid?

    Affiliates can be paid through various methods, depending on the company. Common payment methods include PayPal, prepaid debit cards, gift cards, checks, or direct deposit through electronic ACH bank transfer payments.

    Work-wise, affiliates typically get paid more when they generate more leads or sales through their marketing.

  3. What percentage do affiliates make?

    Many factors affect what percentage affiliates make. For the most part, though, the average affiliate marketer can make anywhere between 5% to 30% on a commission. That means that if an affiliate was to make $5,000 on a commission, they could earn anywhere between $250 and $3,000.

    A lot of this disparity can be attributed to the company’s size, the affiliate’s experience, and product type.

  4. Is affiliate marketing easy?

    Affiliate marketing isn’t easy, but it’s rewarding. Like any commission-based form of work, success in affiliate marketing is dependent on your own experience and determination. You’ll be responsible for building relationships, honing your niche, and creating a system that performs well among customers.

    Overall, if you like working independently and don’t mind working your way up, you can succeed as an affiliate marketer.

  5. Who can be an affiliate marketer?

    Anyone can be an affiliate marketer, however, access to products will largely depend on the brand. For example, some brands will be open to anyone who has a website or audience, while others may require you to meet a certain threshold of traffic.

    In general, the bigger your audience, the more interested most brands will be in offering you an affiliate marketing opportunity.

Conclusion

As of 2022, over 80% of advertisers and publishers use affiliate marketing. That’s why the U.S. alone, companies like Amazon and eBay rely on affiliate marketing so heavily (53% of all Amazon sales come from affiliate marketing!).

Affiliate marketing is seen as an effective form of advertising from customers to companies, with links generating over 5 billion clicks per year. And these clicks matter, resulting in 170 million purchases and 63% of affiliate marketers saying they “strongly agree” that affiliate marketing is great for drawing in new customers.

With all that in mind, we can expect affiliate marketing to continue as an important aspect of the online shopping sphere.

References

  1. BigCommerce. “Affiliate Marketing: What It Is and How You Can Get Started.” Accessed on March 5th, 2022.

  2. Statista. “Affiliate marketing spending in the United States from 2010 to 2022.” Accessed on March 5th, 2022.

  3. SaaS Scout. “Affiliate Marketing Statistics & Trends Globally (2021).” Accessed on March 7th, 2022.

  4. Google Books. “Kick Start Your Own Affiliate Marketing Business.” Accessed on March 7th, 2022.

  5. PageWiz. “Getting Started With Affiliate Marketing.” Accessed on March 7th, 2022.

  6. Awin. “Awin Report.” Accessed on March 7th, 2022.

  7. BloggingWizard. “10 Best Affiliate Platforms And Networks Compared (2022).” Accessed on March 7th, 2022.

  8. eMarketer. “Affiliate Marketing Is Highly Measurable, Scales Easily.” Accessed on March 7th, 2022.

  9. Markup Hero. “10 SaaS Affiliate Programs in 2021 That Are Easy to Sell and Have the Biggest Payouts.” Accessed on March 7th, 2022.

  10. AM Navigator. “Analysis of 550 Best Affiliate Programs Reveals Top 20 Niches.” Accessed on March 7th, 2022.

  11. Shane Baker. “6 Awesome Affiliate Marketing Strategies to Drive More Sales in 2022.” Accessed on March 7th, 2022.

  12. Referral Rock. “Is Affiliate Marketing Good or Bad? 56 Marketers Share Their Opinions.” Accessed on March 8th, 2022.

  13. AuthorityHacker. “How Much Can You Make From Affiliate Marketing?” Accessed on March 8th, 2022.

  14. CSA. “Study: Most product searches begin on Amazon.” Accessed on March 8th, 2022.

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Author

Jack Flynn

Jack Flynn is a writer for Zippia. In his professional career he’s written over 100 research papers, articles and blog posts. Some of his most popular published works include his writing about economic terms and research into job classifications. Jack received his BS from Hampshire College.

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