On the Internet, nothing stays the same for too long. Digital marketing trends are ever in a state of flux—and that includes trends within affiliate marketing. This is actually one of the oldest, most established practices in all of online commerce, yet it also evolves with each passing year. Indeed, that evolution is critical to its longevity, and to the fact that affiliate marketing still offers such promise to online businesses and brands.

With the calendar year now well under way, we thought now would be a good time to pause and consider some of the ways in which affiliate marketing has changed lately, and some of the ways in which we predict it will change by year’s end. Below, you will find out list of 10 predictions for affiliate marketing—all of them worth considering as you contemplate your own 2017 marketing initiatives.

How Affiliate Marketing is Changing in 2017

Here’s the full list.

  1. Affiliate marketing will continue to become more mainstream, more legitimate in the eyes of everyday online consumers. This will make it more effective, and lead to more open doors, yet it may also create more competition, with an influx of new affiliates.
  2. A video will continue to be a big deal and live streaming in particular. Affiliate marketers who use Facebook and YouTube to live stream rich, value-adding content—and who include a link to where viewers can learn more—will remain on the cutting edge.
  3. Apps will also be a big deal. More and more businesses are creating their own branded apps, which puts an onus on affiliate marketers to encourage app downloads and in-app purchases.
  4. We also anticipate things like Internet sales tax to be big factors in 2017—and it would not surprise us one bit to witness more members of the affiliate marketing scene actually lobbying Congress for changes to existing Internet tax policies.
  5. Though affiliate marketing has always been fairly localized, we wonder if 2017 won’t see a further push toward globalization—as, indeed, we’ve seen over the past few years already.
  6. Something else we expect to see is a further union of affiliate marketing and content marketing. Content marketing, of course, has been at the epicenter of digital marketing for years now, yet it’s something many business owners still struggle with. Nobody can create solid, brand-centered content like affiliate marketers, though, and that skillset is going to become more valuable as time moves on.
  7. Influencer marketing—also a significant trend in digital marketing these days—will continue to play an integral role in affiliate strategy.
  8. Something more big-picture: We expect there to be more and more mergers and acquisitions within the affiliate marketing space this year, following on the heels of the Groupon/LivingSocial acquisition last year.
  9. Affiliate networks and brands will step up their game in a serious way this year, focusing on their core business propositions and really making solid, valuable offers for the consumer.
  10. On that note, for as much as affiliate marketing is poised to change, there will also be a lot of shoring up of the basics—coupons, deals, value, quality, loyalty. These aren’t just buzzwords. They are essential to the whole affiliate marketing enterprise.

Wrap Your Head Around Affiliate Marketing

The bottom line? Affiliate marketing remains invaluable, yet it doesn’t remain stagnant. To leverage it effectively, you’ve got to be immersed in these industry trends. That’s a level of expertise we can provide you with. Reach out to Sefati Consulting Group today to ask about our consultation services within affiliate marketing.