Affiliate systems ( engl. affiliate " affiliate " ) are Internet-based marketing solutions, where mostly a commercial provider (Merchant ) its distributors (affiliates ) success-oriented remunerated by a commission. The product provider (Merchant ) here represents his advertising tools that use the affiliate on its pages to advertise the offers of cooperation partner, or may use other channels, such as keyword advertising or email marketing.

  • 3.1 Pay per Click
  • 3.2 Pay per Lead
  • 3.3 Pay per Sale
  • 3.4 Pay per Click Out
  • 3.5 Pay per link
  • 3.6 Pay per print out
  • 3.7 Pay per View
  • 3.8 Pay per SignUp
  • 3.9 Pay-per- Install
  • 3:10 Lifetime remuneration
  • 3:11 airtime compensation
  • 4.1 affiliate system operators
  • 4.2 Distributors


Affiliate systems are based on the principle of commission. The switching is done in the virtual world of the World Wide Web via a link. Such affiliate link contains a special code that identifies the affiliate clearly the merchants. Simplified, this means that by the link partner identifier identifies the dealer from whom the customer has been sent. The commission is paid for the pure clicks on the ad ( "Click" ), the transmission of qualified leads ( "Lead" ) or sale ( "Sale" ). In contrast to the Merchant ( literally: Dealer, here also the program provider or operator ) offers, products or services, the affiliate so simply acts as an interface between retailers and potential customers.

If the user clicks so to such affiliate link, so it will redirect to the corresponding page of the merchant. These parameters are transmitted, which allow the correct allocation of the revenue generated by a publisher. This assignment is called tracking. Thus enables cookie tracking assigning and tracking of an Internet user based on a cookie. The cookie stored on the hard drive of the user thus enables the subsequent (also with time shift and interrupted interactivity) recognition and tracking. The tracking using cookies is the most used method in the affiliate marketing in order to assign a user to the referring affiliate can.

With affiliate marketing systems online cooperation management companies market their products and services through links to partner websites. For revenue generated or measurable success fee will be paid. This is an advantage for the product provider, but a disadvantage for the seller of advertising space, as the business risk of the product provider passes depending on the choice of the fitness model in no small part to the advertising space provider. Since the inventory in the advertising space provider can not be increased infinitely, he will think twice before with which affiliate program, he expects the best results. Thus arises to find a fair pricing model pressure for the product providers.

Affiliate marketing can be implemented offline. For this purpose, printed vouchers can be used which contain a code to identify the publisher. The salary will be either a pay per lead or pay per sale.

Types of participants

Affiliate System Operator

The affiliate system operator is responsible for the provision and operation of the portal. He has to ensure error-free operation and is responsible for the marketing of the portal. In reality, there are two types of operators. Firstly, have independent platforms that affiliate networks established, which act as an interface between retailers (merchants ) and channel partners ( Affiliates ). These are primarily responsible for the provision and administration of the technology and the financial settlement. On the other hand, platforms can be found within which the traders themselves, the operator function is performed (so-called " In-House Programs"). These operated by the dealers themselves partner programs play in the German market only a minor role.


Dealer, so advertisers and Merchants place their online products and services offered through the affiliate system available and allow the connected partners to market the goods from their websites. The distribution partners (affiliates, publishers ) are provided, which can advertise on your web site or (for email publishers ) by e -mail, the partners advertising tool. Achieves the distributor success ( through a sale, a registration, a View), the dealer pays the predetermined for each type of distribution commission.


Distributors (Publisher, affiliates) use the affiliate system to cooperate with the attached shop operators ( dealers ). You profit from the sale of the advertised products on their own websites.

Condition models

Pay per Click

Here the commission for each successful click is paid on the ad. The settlement of sponsored links, advertisements next to search results, like Google AdWords or Yahoo! Search Marketing is calculated according to this model. Various techniques such as an IP block to prevent multiple clicks of a single user.

One problem for the operator of the affiliate system proves on this form of remuneration, the fact that the quality of the forwarded stream of visitors is difficult to influence, since, unlike in the following compensation models are no minimum requirements for certain actions of the visitors. A pay- per-click provisioning is therefore usually applied for short-term campaigns to pure increase the range that can not be brought directly in connection with the purchase or sale of products. By way of example, it is publicize search portals that rely mainly on this model.

The abbreviation EPC stands for "Earnings per 100 clicks" and points out how much commission an advertiser ( Advertiser) for an average of 100 clicks to his website owners (affiliates ) pours. The terms " pay per click " (PPC ) and cost per click (CPC ) are often used interchangeably, which actually refers to the process as such PPC and CPC is the price per single click. Alternative billing models are " cost per order " (CPO), "cost per action " (CPA ), " cost per lead " (CPL ) or " thousand contact price" ( CPM ).

Pay per Lead

The commission is paid by the buyer per contact, for example when requested advertising material by the customer. Pay per lead is particularly suitable for online marketing consultancy -intensive goods. Products that pose complex in content, are ordered by customers rarely without detailed advice on the Internet, which is why a " Pay per Sale " compensation is excluded, since the assignment of an offline ordered goods at the relevant intermediary is not possible. The advantage of the " pay per lead " over the " pay per click ", however, is the action bound pay the distributor. It is actually only paid quality traffic.

Pay per Sale

The commission will be paid once the customer generates revenue. Usually this means the sale (English: sale ) of goods to the customer. Originally, the remuneration per sale a one-time payment to a mediated turnover dar. To do more to bind partners to your own system, some affiliate programs are, however, changing over from the individual sales, but all transactions of a customer attributable to each participating partner and accordingly to be paid, either within a period after click (usually 30 to 90 days) or " lifetime" (long live as long as the customer buys again or revenue generated ). "Lifetime " systems of this kind are currently almost exclusively in the adult affiliate segment. This can be largely due to the strong competition offered affiliate systems and attributed to the fact that customers usually still read product reviews before making a purchase or take advantage of price comparisons and order later.

Pay per Click Out

The mediated visitor must click on the website of the merchant on a listed provider there or on another page of the Sponsor ( "click out"). Only then a commission is paid. This should offset the disadvantages of the pure "pay per click" be reduced, also referred to as " pay-per- active".

Pay per link

The installation of a link on the website of the affiliate. It is solely remunerated pop up the links.

Pay per print out

On terminals and coupon machines that are controlled via the Internet, hard copy is paid. Remuneration or accounting designation designation are " cost-per- print" and "cost per print out".

Pay per View

Each tracked ( -evaluated ) Distribution of advertising material will be paid, that is to say, the frequency of the calls of an advertising banner is counted and then paid the website operator. Because this method proved to be not very effective in recent years, there is today no longer as good as, if appropriate, in the pop-up function of individual affiliate provider.

Pay per SignUp

Similar to " Pay Per Lead " is only paid if the mediated visitor logs on to the website of the merchant.

Pay-per- Install

In Pay per Install the (first ) installation of software is provisioned on a computer, such as toolbars or demo versions.

Lifetime remuneration

The lifetime allowance is usually a combination of the models pay per sale or pay-per- Install and the idea to a publisher (affiliate ) for each additional purchase of the advertised end customers again pay a fee. A pro-rata, in most practical cases, a commission is paid on the " lifelong " Cart of referred customers ( under its initial application in a shop system ).

Airtime compensation

A Airtime compensation is designed specifically for the telecommunications sector and gives the publisher a commission for every paid by the referred call minute end-user such as a mobile phone contract, over a certain period. There is often this condition model in conjunction with a Lifetime remuneration.

Influence the condition model to the company's success

Affiliate System Operator

The transition between click, lead and sale commissions is fluid. Modern affiliate systems often offer combinations of the above payment models, such as the payment per click and additionally per sale. This is in addition to other marketing strategic factors mostly with the aim to produce within a comprehensive affiliate networks with a large number of connected partners the highest possible degree of attention in the community. The choice of the compensation model and the amount of compensation represent a critical factor influencing the placement of products on the websites of partners dar.


Depending on the choice of the compensation model through the affiliate system operators to potential marketing strategies for affiliate derived. Remuneration per Click ( ie per mediated page visitors) for example, offers the possibility to book even more favorable traffic in search engines and these to the target page forward ( arbitrage ). The Partner provides in this case its performance through the effective selection of search terms and the long-term monitoring of the term portfolio. Unlike pay -per-click affiliate uses in the pay-per -sale compensation positive effects on long -term planning of his company's success, if they are connected for example with permanent compensation one to the operations of acquired by it customers.

Studies and Events

In affiliate marketing, especially the success rate is important. In recent years, more and more studies have pointed out in this area is that it's just as important as anything arrives at the customer and benefits incurred even if the provider thereof. Also in the area of the vouchers, the affiliate marketing has manifested. Vouchers increasingly common in recent years. They are found not only in mailboxes and mail folders, but are also often settled times in one package. In order to demonstrate the relevance and coverage of the vouchers, studies are essential in these areas.

The range of the vouchers is achieved by the high transmission. However, this relevance is not yet determined. The relevance of a voucher only comes into play when the customer redeems this also. Was previously repeatedly called the watering can principle in the foreground of this is already being replaced by numerous other methods that are far more effective. So the relevance is also supported by Affilianten programs. Can record a profit of the manufacturer only by redeeming a voucher and not already covered by the emission, more attention is paid to the attractiveness of the voucher. Only when the interests of the client can be increased, and the voucher relevance will win. By this method, not only the manufacturer itself can be seen as the winner but also the customer who achieved in his shopping at a discount price, discounts or promotions. Customers simply feel cheated by relevant vouchers, but see it as a little reward for a purchase made. Did Vouchers highly relevant then also increases the manufacturer 's image, because the customer is satisfied.

The more increases a company's image, the higher the redemption rate of the coupons will be. Vouchers are also becoming more common lately offered on the Internet, since the purchase has simply moved more and more into the online world in recent years. Although vouchers had to repeatedly experience criticism, but in studies it was well demonstrated that 90 percent of Germans redeem their vouchers. Especially through affiliate systems and new technology vouchers were brought back to life and got rid of the bad reputation quickly. According to studies, there are some options, which is why vouchers are not redeemed:

  • The sender does not seem to be trustworthy.
  • The order so that the voucher can be redeemed is very high, so this does not result in relation to the voucher.
  • Vouchers can only be redeemed by new customers and not of true existing customers.

Central events for affiliate marketing experts are held annually in Munich held affiliate TactixX and the a4uexpo, the guest appearances in Berlin in Germany 2014.

Liability issues

Multiple affiliate programs were the subject of lawsuits. In most cases, it concerned the question whether the Advertiser ( Merchant) for violations of his publishers (affiliates ) may be held liable. Almost unanimously, the courts have assumed that it is the affiliate is a " representative " of the Merchant, in the sense of § 8 paragraph 2 of the UWG, is Thus, a company may be liable for violations committed by employees or agents. Similar provisions exist in other legislation, such as in trademark law ( § 14 para 7, § 15, para 6 Marks) or copyright ( § 100 of the Copyright Act ): " Officer " for the purposes of these regulations is to those who, without being employees, or in the company of another is automatically due to a contractual or other relationship. Whether or not there is a direct contractual relationship between affiliate and merchant or whether an affiliate network makes contracts with both parties is irrelevant. Also contractual liability exclusions on the liability towards third parties has no effect. They are an indication that the advertiser can influence the behavior of the Publishers, as with penalties or contract termination. In addition to the Commissioned liability also a responsibility of the Merchant as disturbers is possible.