With 15% of total digital media revenue coming from affiliate marketing, the US spend on this marketing channel alone is nearing $5B. More importantly, considering the endless opportunities it provides for vendors, publishers and consumers, affiliate marketing proves to be an essential part of every future successful business plan. In a “global village” where everything is connected and all is happening at once, powered by ever-changing electronic solutions, the affiliate marketing channel is one of the best means for brands to tap into new markets, as well as for consumers to buy products or services on their own terms.

As digitalization becomes a more integrated part in our daily life, the global online retail sales are growing and estimated to reach 8.8% of total retail spending in 2018 compared to 7.4% in 2016. Of course, having access to a global market and actually spending or making money online is determined by the penetration of internet in different parts of the world, along with the quality of the digital experience.

First 10 countries with the highest rate of internet penetration (internet users vs. population of respective country):

1China52.3 %
2India36.5 %
3United States88.6 %
4Brazil67.5 %
5Japan91.0 %
6Russia70.5 %
7Nigeria52.0 %
8Indonesia34.1 %
9Germany88.9 %
10Mexico56.0 %

Source: Invespcro

The rate of internet penetration is not linked to the rate of online spending:

Top 5 countries with retail E-commerce sales as % of total retail sales
South Korea10.5%11.3%12.0%

Source: Invespcro

The average e-commerce revenue by the online shopper is determined by the economical context and purchasing power each country is defined by:

CountryAverage revenue per online shopper
United States$1,804
United Kingdom$1,629

Source: Invespcro

The shopping process has dramatically changed over the past years. We now live in an omni channel context in which people prefer getting the information and buying the products online, more than ever before. However, this doesn’t mean the other traditional channels have been (or should be) forgotten. It has never been more important to manage a coherent brand image by aligning the concept, the message and the offer to all means of distribution, online and off-line: physical store, online ads, emails, events, website, etc.

Retailers now face the need to adapt their products and the brand’s core promise to their target audiences. They have to understand and adapt their services to the needs of customers worldwide: localized online strategies consist of website translation, local currency pricing display, localized payment solutions, several delivery options, localized support and so on.

From the moment a shopping journey starts, the informed consumers expect continuity and consistence at any point and across all shopping and delivery channels. Data mining becomes crucial in deciding where and when to spend money as a merchant. All gaps must be filled: from the offers consumers receive on their email (based on his previous acquisitions), to the landing page experience, shopping cart ease of use and convenient payment options and to the possibility of returning the product in store and benefit from support in a language of choice.

Affiliate marketing represents a huge opportunity for local economies as international and many savvy brands started seeking new solutions to meet their customers’ needs anywhere and anyhow.

A survey conducted by Pitney Bowes shows that cross-border ecommerce has become prevalent among consumers around the world:

“Consumers across the world have spoken. We have moved beyond the days of marketplace or retailer; in-store or online; or even in-country or cross-border,” says Lila Snyder, President, Global Ecommerce, Pitney Bowes. “The world is shopping—everywhere—as new consumer behaviors and trends have emerged.”

The most recent and relevant survey on affiliate marketing is the AffStat report, conducted by the Affiliate Summit team on more than 2.350 affiliate worldwide in 2015.

Almost 61% of the respondents were from the US, 3.53% of them were based in India, 3,08% were from the U.K. and 2.74% were Russians. A little over 3% came from Israel, Germany and Netherlands and less than 3% respondents lived in Spain, Brazil, China, Australia and France.

The AffStat Survey reveals the affiliate marketers core target countries 2015:

US68.18 %
Europe15.07 %
North America 6.16 %
Asia 2.4 %
Africa1.37 %
South America1.37 %
Australia1.03 %
Canada1.03 %
Central America0.68 %
Russia0.34 %
Thailand0.34 %
UK0.34 %
Italy0.34 %

While it’s natural for affiliate markets to grow at a similar rate with the global online spending we should expect differences in shopping behaviors and adoption strategies.

Emerging markets like China and India, countries which absorb the latest fashions at a faster rate will generally require a sound mobile strategy. Shoppers in Japan, France and Russia prefer buying from a desktop. Obviously, most online shoppers prefer payment in their preferred currency and through their chosen method.

Backed by Avangate Affiliate Network’s stats, the top selling affiliate countries for 2015 were the following:

H1, 2016 – Top Affiliate Selling Countries for Software and Digital Goods (Avangate Affiliate Network Stats):

·      United States of America
·      Germany
·      United Kingdom
·      Australia
·      Canada
·      France
·      Japan
·      Brazil
·      Italy
·      Netherlands
·      India
·      Spain
·      Switzerland
·      Turkey
·      Mexico
·      Sweden
·      Belgium
·      Norway
·      Denmark
·      South Africa

If these countries are in your target audience and you would like to start promoting software titles with up to 75% commission per sale, create an Avangate affiliate account and start working with top vendors like: Norton, Bitdefender, ABBYY USA, Telestream, IObit, Magix, Muvee, Iolo, and many more.

The Avangate Affiliates Network, the 1st CPS Network Worldwide for Digital Goods in mThink’s 2015 and 2016 Blue Book surveys. With over 22,000 products in its catalogue and having award-winning vendors as partners, our network has a proven track record of top-quality services and a dedicated team that has managed to bring the 10 years’ network to the peak of the affiliate marketing world.