The different commission models in affiliate marketing

Depending on the affiliate program and the specific contract, the participation of the affiliate partners in the turnover is based on different models of potential customer behavior. Read to learn more about commission models in affiliate marketing.

Pay per click

In this case, affiliate partners receive money for every click on their affiliate links, regardless of whether and how users interact with the merchants' websites - just visiting the websites is enough. For more information on the subject, use this link. This model is rather unusual, as merchants assume the entire risk here: they pay without knowing if they also benefit from the traffic directed to their websites.

Pay per lead

In this case, affiliate partners are paid for each lead generated, which in turn depends on certain actions, for example when a user fills out an online form or requests a trial version on the relevant merchant's website. In this case, the risk is pretty much the same for the affiliate partner and the merchant, as it is guaranteed that users are interested in the promoted product, but have not yet made the final decision to buy.

Pay per sale

In this model, affiliate partners are only involved when a user actually makes a purchase and the merchant makes a sale. This is the most common model, here the risk is borne solely by the affiliate partner.

Payment by link

In this case, the integration of an advertising medium, i.e. the affiliate link on an affiliate partner's website, is already paid for. However, this model is very rare, because there is no guarantee that users consciously perceive the link and actually click on it.

Pay per installation

This model is also only applicable to specific products, especially software. Affiliate partners receive their commission if users install the product (e.g. a demo version, a plug-in or a toolbar).