Affiliate marketing terminology

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Here are some frequently used words during sign up process of affiliate programs. Beginners face a lot of problems while signing up for an affiliate program.

Terms associated with Affiliate marketing


  • Merchant: The Company or an individual who is the owner of product or service that you are going to promote.


  • Advertiser: Same as merchant, but if merchant is promoting his product or service through advertisement.


  • Affiliate: It’s you, who is going to promote merchant’s product or service for an exchange of commission.


  • Publisher: Just another word for affiliates, as you are going to publish merchant’s product on your platform.


  • Associate: Again, just another word for affiliates.


  • Affiliate network: A third party which introduces the merchant to the affiliates and vice versa. It manages all the technicalities for merchant and make sure that affiliates get paid as per norms.


  • Affiliate program: An independent Affiliate program run by a merchant. Where affiliates can directly sign up in program and promote product and services. Nowadays almost every big brand is running their own independent affiliate program e.g, Amazon, ebay etc.


  • Tracking method: An affiliate work is tracked through a unique link that affiliate network or merchant provides to them.


  • Cookies: Cookies are used for tracking, some Affiliate program/network gives a cookie period if someone clicks on affiliate tracking link a cookie file is placed on their browser assigning a unique id for that affiliate, if customer goes to merchant website and perform the required action within that cookie expiration period then affiliate will be credited with the commission.


  • PPS: ( Pay per sale) -- The amount an affiliate get paid when someone through his link lands on the buying page and make the purchase.


  • PPL: ( Pay per lead) -- The amount an affiliate get paid when someone through your link lands on the merchant page and perform the required action e.g. downloading an application, buying a product, Signing up for free trial, fill a short form, doing a small survey, voting in a poll.


  • PPC: ( Pay per click) -- The amount an affiliate get paid when someone visits on the merchant website through your link.


  • PPI: ( Pay per sale) -- The amount an affiliate get paid when someone install a file or an app through that unique link provided to that affiliate.


  • CPA: (Cost per action) -- Price that a merchant is paying for an action similar to PPL.


  • CPC: (Cost per click) – Price that a merchant is paying for a click.


  • CPM: (Cost per thousand)—The amount of money it cost to the advertisers for every thousand impression (views/clicks) an ad gets.


  • Promotion methods/Publisher type:
      • PPC to drive traffic: In this Affiliates use pay per click engines like google, facebook and bing to promote merchant’s offers. In this affiliate invest their own money seeking a greater return on investment.


      • Blogs/Content sites: Affiliates promote merchant’s offer on their blogs, in this affiliates develop content on a specific niche and then they promote similar kind of offers on their blogs.



      • Comparison site: Affiliate uses certain comparison engines to develop a comparison site and help user to find product and services suitable for them.


      • Cashback/Reward sites/Virtual currency: In this affiliate give away some part of their commission to the user in the form of coupons, cashback or virual currencies.



      • E-mail: Those affiliates who have large email list or large number of subscriber they send some offers in the email along with the newsletter.


      • Social Media: Affiliates can promote merchant’s offers on social media sites like facebook, instagram, twitter and pinterest is they have good number of followers.


  • Monetize: Act of making money from any means like website, youtube channel, social media followers etc.


  • Traffic: It is the measure of number of users goes to the merchant’s page through your affiliate link.



  • Traffic source:
      • Paid traffic: You pay search engines to get the clicks and move your website up in the result for a specific keyword.


      • Organic searches/SEO: Search engine optimization (SEO) or Organic search is process of optimizing your website up in the search engine result for a specific keyword or topic.


  • IM handle: This is required during the sign up process in most network for communication purpose, you can create an Instant messaging (I.M) handle if you don’t have one usually people prefer skype and whatsapp for this.

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4 Responses

  1. Its pretty helpfup for me. was looking for this kind of stuff.
    thanks for sharing

  2. I need this article. Thank you very much for sharing a great article with me and whole people.

  3. gaurav verma says:

    hi. very good i need it to study
    thanks for sharing .keep up the good work

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