The Golden Quarter - Affiliate Predictions 2018

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With the Golden Quarter upon us, what trends can expect to see from the affiliate channel in 2018?

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Retail events are key milestones for brands, distinguishing promotions and campaigns. Traditionally, these have occured around obvious annual occurrences: Back to School, Fourth of July, Thanksgiving, Christmas and other regional and seasonal celebrations.

However, with the growing internationalization of e-commerce, we have witnessed a cross-pollination of ideas and campaigns, ultimately leading to a more widespread adoption of these events.

Take Black Friday, a US retail phenomenon with in-store roots. It has long resonated with consumers, falling the day after Thanksgiving and marking the traditional start of the holiday shopping period.

Enter Apple and Amazon, who transformed the retail landscape by exporting the basic principles of discounted and time-sensitive deals to an international audience. While initially a slow burn in most of the countries Black Friday was launched, the concept reached a tipping point with the momentum over the past handful of years proving unstoppable.

Some brands have struggled to grapple with the surge in demand, including how to balance the increase in returns with maintaining decent levels of customer service, the inexorable rise of e-commerce and the margin hit from discounting.

Additionally, in an increasingly cutthroat retail environment that has seen traditional brands challenged on many fronts, some are seeking to steal a march on their competitors, looking for an angle or opportunity to secure precious market share. Hosting deals, promotions and offers even earlier in advance of Black Friday, we are seeing retailer ‘creep’ as November morphs into a 30-day discounting splurge.

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