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Affiliate Marketing Abbreviations

Are you baffled and confused by all of those cryptic abbreviations, jargon and acronyms that are constantly bandied about in the world of affiliate marketing?

Who are the advertisers, and who are the publishers?

{Typically, advertisers have the products, and publishers promote the products through their webinars, blogs or emails.}

Here is a quick list to help you make sense of them all.


Affiliate Manager – this is your contact person at the company’s affiliate program.


Application Program Interface – this is the data feed between the Affiliate Program and your web site. It ensures that your date in is sync with that created by the merchant that you are representing.


Average order value – a key metric to be measured. For a given time period, divide the total value of the orders by the number of orders.


Customer Acquisition Cost – how much does it cost you to get a new customer? If this is greater then the LTV (see below), then you are in the death-spiral and it is time to reassess your business model.


An abbreviation for Commission Junction – one of the leading affiliate marketing networks.


Content Management Systems. These are software systems that allow one to push content on a web site


Cost Per Action (can also be called Cost Per Acquisition). Advertisers pay for a specified action made by an end-user in response to an ad, for example filling survey, or clicking a link.


Cost Per Thousand – a metric that assesses how much it will cost for a specific form of advertising to reach 1,000 viewers.


Conversion Rate – the percentage of people who take a specific action, The higher the conversion rate the better.


Call To Action – what is it that you want someone to do? Fill out a form, visit a web site? Attend a webinar? These are your calls to action


Click Through Rate – the percentage of website visitors who click through a specific link.


Earnings per click.The payout from an affiliate program, typically, based on one hundred clicks.


Highest Paid Person’s Opinion. This is a great one. What does the “Top Dog” that of you?


Life Time Value. Once you have someone on your emailing list, can you calculate what their your value is to them (and conversely, what their value is to you) over a period of time?


Key Performance Indicator. This used to be something as squishy as “eye-balls per page”, but to be realistic it should be linked to a conversion ratio that generates revenue.


Multi-level marketing – a pyramid organization where income is derived by convincing others to become sellers, and receiving a commission on their sales.


Multivariate testing. One cardinal sin is to assume that everyone likes what you like in terms of Call to Action buttons, web site colors, etc. TnT (Test and Tweak) is the only way to go. Let your customers decide what they like – it might (and usually is) vastly different from you had first envisioned.


Niche marketing – this is where the money is. Be an authority in your niche, and you will dominate that area of the internet.


Outsourced (Affiliate) Program Manager – an affiliate manager who manages a company’s affiliate program on an outsource basis.


Pay Per Action – equivalent to CPA


Pay per click – a renumeration based on how many prospects click through an ad or banner.


Pay Per Call – renumeration based on how many prospects call an advertiser.


Pay Per Lead – renumeration based on how many  leads are received by an advertisers.


Pay Per Sale – renumeration based on how many sales an advertiser makes.


Pay Per View – publishers receive payment every time a website page is viewed.


Terms of Service – what did you agree to when you clicked off on that 200 legal page document? Outlines the obligations and restrictions of the advertisers and publisher in a legally binding document.


I think that I just made this one up – Test and Tweak. Create a campaign, and send it out to a subset of your entire list. Isolate specific components of the campaign that can be modified (color of buttons, call to action, headlines, etc.) and send out a different variation to another subset and see how they compare to each other. Never send a single campaign to your entire list – always challenge, learn and optimize.


Unique visits – Unfortunately, this means that people came to your web site, and never came back. Time to work on stuff to keep them there!


User experience – how easy is it for customer to use your web site?




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