What are the main advertiser channels in affiliate marketing?

Affiliate marketing is used in and for a lot of different industries. Although the range of industries is very broad, overall we can say that main advertiser channels in affiliate marketing are Retail & Fashion, Travel, Energy, Telecom and Finance. In this paragraph we will elaborate on these advertiser channels. Not only will we briefly discuss the sale and commission structures (from a zanox point of view), we will also give examples of players within these specific industries. We will end this paragraph with a sum up of the most crucial aspects in order to set up an attractive programme for publishers.


Retail & Fashion


An affiliate network has various webshops in the Retail & Fashion segment that all sell tangible products to consumers. We can divide the Retail & Fashion segment into the following sub segments:

  • Fashion – single brand & multi brand stores
  • Department stores
  • Electronics – single brand & multi brand stores
  • Home & Living – DIY & deco
  • Food & health – home delivery & services

Although they are not big yet, the segments Home & Living and Food & Health are upcoming in affiliate marketing.


As stated above all the transactions that take place are tangible products like shoes, clothing or electronic devices. Generally the commission model for publishers is a percentage of the purchase amount excluding VAT and/or delivery cost. Notable is that in this industry there’s an increase in the delivery of services related to products, like for example a subscription to a foodbox or a flower box.

A few examples of advertisers from different industries who are active in the zanox network are: Zalando, de Bijenkorf, Coolblue, Redcoon, Home24 and Hellofresh.


Advertisers who are active in several different segments are mostly content publishers who usually realize sales by integrating an advertisers’ product feed. Additionally there are blog, comparison, voucher code and cashback publishers active. The type of publisher often depends on the segment/industry.


In Retail & Fashion there are also several different innovative publisher concepts active. A few examples of those concepts are making Instagram posts shoppable or integrating a shop on high traffic content portals.




In the travel industry there are various providers who constantly focus their work on the holiday experience of the consumer. Some providers compose package deals themselves, while others only offer part of the holiday. Some examples for instance are:

  • Tour operators
  • Airlines
  • Providers with hotel offers only
  • Resellers
  • Complementary products

The transactions that take place are generally reservations/holidays that are booked by customers. The reward in the affiliate channel for these bookings is mainly a percentage in fee of the total sum, any possible taxes excluded. Because there are low marges in the travel industry, the fees are very competitive and therefore the commission model is often based on an average CPA. A few examples of players in the travel industry active in the zanox’ affiliate network are: Expedia, Hotels.com, Center Parcs, NS International, Bungalows.nl, Brussels Airlines, Parcompare etc. Besides the lot of advertisers within Travel an affiliate network also works with a wide range of publishers related to the travel industry. Most traffic is being realized through publishers who are active in offering specific travel products. There are various publisher concepts that are alive or trending in travel: from providing inspirational input for different holiday destinations or holiday comparison websites focused on the specific segments to product offers or the holiday itself and so on.


Telecom & Services


The Telecom segment is mostly concerned with the sales of all thinkable telecommunication services for consumers, freelancers/independent contractors and SME’s (small & medium enterprises). Generally telecommunication services are being sold as subscriptions/contracts, wherein the consumer agrees to a temporary purchase. Examples are mobile phone subscriptions, sim only plans and broadband package deals.


The transactions that take place mainly entail contracting new customers or prolonging contracts of existing customers. In the telecom segment it’s very common for telecom providers to pay commission when a new customer is contracted, but it’s also possible a telecom provider compensates to encourage retention contracts. The commissions paid out to publishers do vary quite a bit. Regularly publisher fees are set based on the revenues of the advertiser. Therefore we see the trend in telecom that payment based on customer values is becoming more and more important. The payment model CPA is often set as a fixed fee per delivered customer or it’s an X percentage dependent on the height of the contract.


There are a lot of players in the Telecom sector, nowadays providers in most countries run an affiliate marketing campaign en spend a lot of time in managing those campaigns. A few examples of those players are: KPN, T-Mobile, Vodafone, Tele2 and Ziggo. Besides these advertisers there is also a wide range of telecom related publishers. Most traffic and sales is realized through publishers who write telecom related content and offer consumers the possibility to compare a product(s).

Telecommunication services are typical product type that consumers check and compare on price/quality. As discussed earlier, to be able to make a proper comparison, performance marketing networks offer product feeds that can be used by publishers and implemented on their website. With the help of a comparison tool, consumers are able to compare "apples with apples" and make the right choice.




Since the liberalization in 2004 the energy market is in full swing. Throughout the year consumers can switch energy supplier, provided that their contract term has expired. Due to the market forces the energy rates have increased significantly. More and more consumers are aware of their fixed charges, that’s why it can pay off to compare prices. In 2015 2.3 million households in The Netherlands changed energy supplier. Within the energy segment you have a lot energy comparison sites that actively compare prices and suppliers with each other. Stunting with special deals, discounts and incentives suppliers try to persuade consumers into switching to them. Suppliers in The Netherlands that run an affiliate marketing program include Essent, Oxxio, Nuon and Electrabel. The publisher commissions are variable, but easily rise to a significant amount per new customer.


Financial Services


The segment Financial services is divided into two sub segments: Insurance and Banking products. In their turn they can be divided in the many insurance and banking products. In this Finance segment the core affiliate business is to get new clients. Since 2009 the segment has enjoyed a real boom, more and more consumers close a contract online without interference of an intermediary.

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