5 Key Affiliate Marketing Terms

1. Lock Date

Definition: A “Lock Date” is the moment in time that a merchant can no longer edit or void an affiliate transaction. Generally, all transactions “lock” on the 20th of the month and include transactions from the month prior.  From the merchant’s point-of-view, the period between the sale/lead transaction and the lock date gives them time to review and validate each transaction, voiding any returns or making any necessary edits. Once the transaction hits the lock date the commission amount associated with the transaction can no longer be edited and is eligible to be paid out to the affiliate.

2. Two-Tier Affiliate Program

Definition:  A two-tiered program is designed to encourage current Affiliates to recruit new Affiliates into a merchant’s program.

A merchant can set up a two-tiered program in two different ways – bounty or percentage.

Bounty is a flat rate that the current affiliate would get for recruiting a new affiliate.

Percentage goes a little further; the current affiliate would get a percentage based on the commission that is given to any of their recruited affiliate for driving sales.

3. Affiliate Agreement (Program Agreement)

Definition: Simply put, the Program Agreement is the legally binding contract that merchants present to affiliate joining their program.

It lists any program restrictions, guidelines of use, or conditions that affiliate partners must follow while promoting the brand. The Affiliate Agreement is a legally binding, business document. If it is not added in, affiliates can only assume that the only restrictions in how they promote the program and its products are the basic ShareASale terms.

4. EPC

Definition: An industry-wide metric, EPC stands for “Earnings Per Click” and depicts the average affiliate earnings per 100 clicks across all affiliates in a merchant’s program. The formula for this is (Commission Earned/Clicks) x 100.

This metric is provided as a 7-day and 30-day rolling average on ShareASale. To get a snapshot of how well a program is performing, affiliates can view the EPC of every merchant from the Merchant Search page or on their Merchant Summary page by clicking the name of the merchant.

5. Split Testing

Description:  Split testing is also known as A/B testing and is a common marketing strategy for determining which, out of two (or more) options, will perform better – drive more conversions, increase open rate, or encourage more click-throughs. By testing things such as headers, titles, landing pages, email subject lines, a marketer is able to determine what to implement in the future!

Affiliates can see which conversions are coming from each link for split testing by using &afftrack=[value_A] or &afftrack=[value_B] in their links.

Learn more about Affiliate-Defined Tracking here: https://shareasale.atlassian.net/wiki/spaces/SAS/pages/582516746

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