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Glossary overview

Affiliate marketing

Armin Gögele, last updated on June 14, 2023

What is Affiliate Marketing?

Affiliate marketing is a discipline of online marketing based on commission. In this model, website operators (also called "affiliates" or "publishers") provide advertising space for advertisers (also called "advertisers" or "merchants"). If the displayed advertising leads to a desired action, such as a click, a purchase or a registration, the publisher receives a commission.


Payment can be based on various models, such as per click, per order or purchase, or per contact. Users leave individual numerical codes in the system, known as cookies, when they perform these actions. In addition, advertisers use specific links that are clearly assigned to a particular advertiser. By evaluating this information, the merchant can track exactly which affiliate directed the user to its website.


Affiliate networks act as intermediaries between advertisers and publishers. They offer affiliate programs in which publishers who meet certain requirements can participate and are responsible for the provision and administration of the technology as well as the financial settlement.

Advantages of affiliate marketing for hotels

  • Cost effective: advertisers pay only for actual results.
  • Broad reach: affiliates promote the offer on various channels.
  • Targeted advertising: advertisers can precisely address their target audience.
  • Performance-oriented: The focus is on measurable results.

The most important questions about Affiliate Marketing in Hotel Marketing

What is affiliate marketing in the hospitality industry?

 Affiliate marketing in the hotel industry refers to the cooperation of hotels with partners, called affiliates or publishers, who provide advertising space to drive hotel bookings. Hotels pay affiliates a commission when bookings or transactions are generated through their referral links or advertisements.

What are the benefits of affiliate marketing for hotels?

 Affiliate marketing offers several benefits to hotels: It allows for greater reach and visibility. Affiliates have their own audiences that they can target with content or promotions. Hotels only pay a commission when a booking or transaction actually takes place. In addition, affiliate marketing is considered a cost-effective marketing strategy because hotels do not have to spend a lot of money on advertising and only pay when results are achieved. 

When does affiliate marketing make sense?

 With affiliate marketing, hotels can increase their online presence, boost bookings and attract new guests. Through affiliate programs, hotels can work with travel websites, influencers or other relevant partners to promote their offers. This allows for greater reach and targeting of potential guests, which can lead to higher occupancy rates.

How is the performance of my affiliate campaigns measured?

 Affiliate campaign performance is measured by various metrics, including the number of clicks, leads, or bookings that result from referred visits. Conversion rate, amount of revenue generated, and return on investment (ROI) are also used for evaluation. By analyzing this data, hoteliers can precisely track and optimize the success of their affiliate marketing activities.