The Affiliate Marketing Lingo to Know

Saturday, February 11, 2023

If you want to succeed with affiliate marketing, knowing the terminology is the key starting point.

If you can’t understand or speak the language then you are going to have a hard time learning what you need to be successful.

Here are the main affiliate marketing terms you should understand before continuing.


An Affiliate or Affiliate Marketer is the publisher or salesperson in an affiliate marketing relationship.

Affiliate directory

An affiliate directory is a categorized listing of affiliate programs. There are many out there and you can build one too if you want.

Affiliate fraud

Affiliate Fraud is bogus or fraudulent activity generated by an affiliate in an attempt to generate illegitimate, unearned revenue. This is a very dangerous thing to do if you are an affiliate. If you get banned, your earning potential is over. Don’t do it.

Affiliate Manager

An Affiliate Manager is a person responsible for managing an online affiliate program for an affiliate merchant. Some affiliate programs, especially the good ones, have a manager to help affiliates get started and to create and manage launches and promotions.

Affiliate marketing

Affiliate Marketing is revenue sharing between online advertisers/merchants and online publishers or salespeople, whereby compensation is based on sales performance, typically in the form of sales, clicks or registrations.

Affiliate merchant

An Affiliate Merchant is the advertiser in an affiliate marketing relationship. This is the person or company that has a product or service to sell and has affiliates doing the selling for them.

Affiliate network

An Affiliate Network is a value-added intermediary providing services, including aggregation, for affiliate merchants and affiliates. JVZoo, Clickbank and Commission Junction are examples of affiliate networks.

Affiliate software

Affiliate Software is software that, at a minimum, provides tracking and reporting of commission-triggering actions (sales, registrations, or clicks) from affiliate links. Many of the networks provide this functionality to merchants or you can use an application like Ambassador.


Cloaking is the tactic of hiding affiliate tracking code in links. Hiding affiliate tracking in a link is an acceptable and widely used practice.

Contextual Link

A contextual link refers to a text link placed within your website or blog content versus a link that is placed in the sidebar as a more traditional advertisement.


Commissions are the money you get for referring a customer to a merchant. It is the predefined money or fee a merchant pays an affiliate for generating a desired outcome for the merchant.


Exclusivity is a contract term in which one party grants another party sole rights with regard to a particular business function.

Payment threshold

A payment threshold is an accumulated commission an affiliate must earn to trigger payment from an affiliate program. Some merchants don’t have a payment threshold and pay right away while others may use $100, $200 or even more depending on the products

Return days

Return days are the number of days an affiliate can earn commission on a conversion (sale or lead) by a referred visitor.

Super affiliate

A Super Affiliate is a rock start affiliate but is also an affiliate that builds a team of other affiliates. Super Affiliates can also get paid a percentage of the commissions that the affiliates under them generate.

Two-tier affiliate program

A two tier affiliate program structure is where affiliates earn commissions on their conversions as well as conversions of other affiliates they refer to the program. Similar to super affiliates.

JV or Joint Venture

A joint venture involves two or more businesses pooling their resources and expertise to achieve a particular goal

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Hi, I Am Craig Cherlet

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