What’s the future of affiliate marketing in 2022?


The last few years have been difficult for many of us but the future of affiliate marketing is looking bright in 2022. Along with the obvious difficulties that arrived with living in a global pandemic came new changes to the way we live and work, which have led more people to work in the affiliate marketing industry.

This means that you can’t take what you already know about affiliate marketing for granted, and you need to keep up with the affiliate marketing trends, or you might get left behind.

Read on to find out exactly what the future of affiliate marketing holds for you and your affiliate marketing campaigns in 2022.

Affiliate marketing budgets are growing 

One of the top affiliate marketing trends we can see this year is growth. Affiliate marketing in 2022 means bigger budgets and bigger campaigns. Statista also shows that in 2022 the US affiliate marketing industry will be worth 8.2 billion, which is an increase of more than 10% compared to 2021. In fact, 80% of businesses in the US use affiliate marketing in some form in their marketing strategy.

It has also been noticed within Zeropark that the average spend per top-up is increasing compared to the last few years. So, it appears that affiliate marketing budgets are growing.

It might be a good idea to increase your top-up and test if higher bids lead to higher conversion rates for your campaigns this year.

What do bigger budgets mean for affiliate marketers?

Well, larger budgets mean larger opportunities, of course. This means more affiliate publishers, more affiliates, more revenue, more affiliate marketing agencies, and more affiliate marketing in general. Yes, that’s a lot of affiliate marketing. As a result, it will also likely mean that there will be a new affiliate marketing program or two coming to your affiliate networks soon.

What’s more, is that Zeropark has a feature that helps affiliate marketers to keep their campaigns running smoothly without worrying that their whole budget will be spent in five minutes. The aptly named Smooth spending feature allows you to spread the budget evenly throughout the day.

And why does this help your affiliate marketing efforts? Well, it prevents your campaigns from traffic spikes and slows down campaign budget burndown. This means you are protected and can leave your campaigns to run with peace of mind.

Statista graph showing growth in spending in the US for the affiliate industry

Which affiliate tools do people actually need in 2022?

We are often asked by affiliate marketers, “Which tools do you really need to be successful in affiliate marketing?”. And the answer is simple, you only need a few tools in your armory to keep the money rolling in.

The first tool we recommend to any affiliate to make sure they have is an affiliate ad tracker, without it you are blindly searching for why your campaigns are losing money, or more importantly where you are making money.

If you learn what works well for your particular affiliate niche then you might have a winning formula that you can repeat, or even automate to bring you further successful campaigns. But again, you are unlikely to know why your affiliate marketing campaigns are doing well without the insights available from an affiliate ad tracker like Voluum, Red Track, or BeMob.

In addition to a tracker, it is generally recommended that you research whether you would benefit from using a lander builder, a spy tool to take a peek at other landing pages, web hosting for your landers, creative tools for improving ad copy and creatives, and potentially some plugins for your browser.

Ultimately, you will need to make up your own mind on what is necessary for your affiliate business as every affiliate marketer is different.

For more offers on affiliate marketing tools be sure to check out the Deals tab once you have topped up your account.

Deals tab

Where do people learn about affiliate marketing?

We all heard about affiliate marketing from different places; some from a business conference, some from friends, some from an affiliate website, some from those loud guys on YouTube bragging about how much they made this month, and some from the Zeropark blog, of course.

Wherever you first learn about affiliate marketing, there is always more to learn and plenty of places to get information about the topic. But there are also a lot of new terms that you need to get your head around when you are just starting out. For example, you need to know the difference between an affiliate program and an affiliate network.

Our top recommendations for where to learn about the affiliate marketing world are as follows:

  • Free and paid online courses (like Voluum Academy)
  • Advice from experts (the super affiliates)
  • Social media and influencer marketing
  • The affiliate marketing forums (STM, affLIFT, and others like Iamaffiliate)
  • From good old trial and error on your own campaigns
  • Or even an affiliate marketing blog like Zeropark’s

Micro-influencers, influencers but on a smaller scale

Micro influencers might be a new term for you but they have been growing in number in the last couple of years at least according to HubSpot. These mini influencers are spending their free time on their digital marketing side hustle and succeeding on a small scale. They don’t need millions of followers to get the attention of small businesses these days.

These micro marketers need is a few thousand users and they’ll be able to grow their online business deals through affiliate marketing of a few niche products or services. The small-scale affiliate partners use quality content to help to convince their audience to make purchases online through successful video marketing.

Smaller brands are also dipping their toes into the affiliate marketing world with these small influencers. If they are successful this may lead to more affiliate programs from small businesses being added to your favorite affiliate network soon.

micro influencer marketing tng

Don’t forget about Gen Z

With the rise of TikTok and Instagram growing in popularity, social media has given a platform to many creators to build an audience within their niche and ultimately make money if their following is large enough. This also allows creators the possibility to promote affiliate products to their fans and has led to growth in the affiliate marketing industry.

In fact, Hootsuite suggests that 16-24-year-olds (who are considered as part of Gen Z) use social media more than search engines, not only in general but when researching potential purchases too. This means that these micro-influencers have a huge market to take advantage of and their small scale means they are perceived as more trustworthy.

This trust is the key to their success which will help them to grow into full-sized influencers in the future. This is why you should focus on keeping your ads to be as appealing and trustworthy as possible as it leads to a higher conversion rate. And everyone wants more actual sales.

So, make sure your stats are from reputable sources, your copy has been spell-checked and you have images of people using your affiliate product or services and maybe even throw in a testimonial or review.

All of these things add to the credibility of your affiliate ads.

Affiliate marketing top verticals to watch for in 2022 

One of the most frequently asked questions in the affiliate industry is “What’s working in affiliate marketing?” It’s asked by newbie and seasoned affiliates marketers and answered frequently by super-affiliates or experts.

So, we thought we would help you out and give you a definitive list of niches that are working for Zeropark affiliates in 2022. Be on the lookout for the right affiliate marketing for your target audience from these niches.

The top five verticals to watch in 2022:

1. Crypto

2. E-commerce

3. Downloads (Antivirus included)

4. Lead generation (Surveys and sweeps included)

5. Gambling

If you want to learn more about the best affiliate marketing niches in 2022 then be sure to check out this article.

Ranking of affiliate verticals

Cryptocurrencies aren’t going anywhere in affiliate marketing

As we mentioned above, crypto offers have been growing in popularity in the affiliate marketing industry in recent years and there’s still time to get in on the action. That’s why it’s next on the list of affiliate marketing trends for you to review.

The rise of NFTs in the last year has meant that cryptocurrencies have hardly been out of the news and with all that awareness about the topic, it’s been easier to promote. No doubt by now, you will have googled and found out that an NFT, is a Non-fungible token. They are linked so often to the cryptocurrency markets as they have the same technology behind them, a blockchain that is.

Well, you don’t need to know everything about whether Dogecoin will drop in price next week or whether Ethereum will be more expensive to be able to promote the latest crypto offers though.

Crypto advertisers simply need to provide access to the market for new customers and need to follow the trends to see which cryptocurrency is trending on Twitter or via google trends and create ads mentioning it. It couldn’t be simpler really. And there are plenty of crypto affiliate marketing programs to choose from.

Just make sure you follow the guidelines set out for financial advice in the GEO you are targeting for your campaigns.

If you are looking for more advice on how to take on the crypto markets and win then check out this affiliate marketing guide to the crypto vertical.

Cryptocurrency on mobile

Automation and AI will retransform affiliate marketing

The adoption of artificial intelligence and automation in businesses has led to great leaps forward in innovation. And what’s more, is that it saves people like you countless hours of sorting through data. While it’s been thought of as a useful addition for many businesses it’s now on the list of affiliate marketing trends in 2022.

One way that you can do just this is by using the rule-based optimization (RBO) feature while setting up your affiliate campaigns in Zeropark.

Once you set up a few rules you will be able to take control of your campaigns. As you can see in the example below you will be able to ensure your campaigns can bid up to gain more traffic when necessary for example. More importantly, you will be able to pause a failing campaign automatically, even when you are not at your computer.

This means you will be able to stop your campaigns from burning your budget and it’ll allow you to keep earning money while you sleep. This is just one way that Zeropark can help you scale your affiliate marketing business.

Rule based optimization

Data will drive brands and affiliate marketers

You read that right, the next affiliate marketing trend is all about data, and keeping an eye on your data will keep your campaigns on track. After all, the numbers don’t lie.

The global big data market size is projected to grow from USD 229.4 billion by 2025 according to Forbes. This is as we see a growing number of businesses take control of their data and find new ways to use it to become more profitable and more efficient.

More data from Forbes suggests that those that invested in big data over the last decade have gained insights into areas of improvement for their business. In fact, in the last five years, more than 50% of leading companies have taken steps to establish a CDO function and appoint a Chief Data Officer within their organizations.

If it works for large organizations then it seems like it is something that the average affiliate marketer should be doing to make the most of their campaigns too. So, it’s time to make data a core part of your affiliate marketing strategies.

Whether this means you need to use your ad tracker more, or simply use the data given to you in the Zeropark dashboard more carefully, it means you need to make sure the numbers are on track if you are to see any positive results from your campaigns.

Even at Zeropark, we have been looking at data more carefully, we have published an insightful post about how our business analysis team has found exactly how frequency filtering affects campaign performance.

If you want to learn more about how to make the most of data for your Zeropark campaigns then read this article on 5 tips on how to read data.

Ad formats like pop ads are still successful for affiliates

This won’t come as a surprise to seasoned Zeropark partners, but the classic affiliate marketing ad formats are still making people money. So, this is less of an affiliate marketing trend, it’s rather a constant state within the affiliate world.

What are the classic affiliate marketing ad formats? Well, put simply these are the original and best ad formats used when affiliate marketing started back in the mid-nineties. And they have only gone from strength to strength since then. If you need reliable affiliate traffic for your website then look no further.

Take a look below and you’ll see exactly which advertising formats we are talking about.

You will see all of these ad formats available in Zeropark today, click on the image below to get started with a demo and start your first campaign now.

[blog-banner id=”4716″ name=”zp-bfcm-in-text-banner-with-deals”]

Push ads perform on mobile devices

As we have already said, push ads are here to stay and there has been a noticeable increase in both supply and demand for this ad format, on mobile in particular.

Mobile device usage has been growing year-on-year since their invention and the days of the huge brick-sized phones but it appears there is still no slowing down. In fact, according to Statista in 2021, the number of unique mobile internet users stood at 4.32 billion, which is 55% of all internet devices. And although desktop devices were thriving during lockdowns put in place as a result of the pandemic, people are back on the move again. That means mobile campaigns are going to be back on top.

So, make sure you are testing to see if the affiliate marketing campaigns you run in your niche work better on desktop or mobile devices this year. You might be surprised by the results.

What’s the future?

The future looks bright for affiliate marketing this year, and for years to come. This is a result of many factors such as an eagerness to succeed from many affiliates, the pandemic, a new business environment, and new technology to help push businesses forward. And of course, many new affiliate marketing trends to take advantage of in the last year.

What does this mean for your campaigns in 2022?

It probably means that there will be a high amount of competition in the industry this year. One way to make sure you come out on top is by tracking your campaigns and optimizing them accordingly. Another way is by not being afraid to make mistakes, as that’s when you learn the most in this industry.


It seems that we can predict some aspects of the future of affiliate marketing by reviewing what has worked in the past. Some affiliate marketing trends will fade but as you can see the traditional ad formats such as push, pop, and domain redirect continue to work well for affiliate marketers in 2022.

But what’s interesting is the growth of search as a source of revenue for affiliate marketers. With more brands looking to increase their brand awareness to new audiences, Zeropark Search Marketplace might be the tool to help you do just that.

Get started with a demo from Zeropark!

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