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2023 Affiliate Guide: Brands Say Reporting, Tracking, and Network Quality Most Important

Jul 17, 2023 by Martech Record

As part of our 2023 Affiliate Industry Guide, we asked brands which features were most important to their choice of tool. Brand leaders have many network and platform technology options, and the comparison process can be complex and time-consuming. Their survey answers showed that most focused on core technological features of tracking, reporting, and network quality when making their platform decision. 


“Please choose the top two reasons you select a specific affiliate marketing platform.”

Brand Respondents


Feature Percent Citing as a Top-Two Reason

Reporting 43.9%

Tracking 41.5%

Quality of Network/Publishers 34.1%

Payment Capabilities 14.6%

Familiarity with Network/Platform 12.2%

Managed Service Team (Networks)   4.9%

Client Services Team (Platforms)   4.9%

Integrations   4.9%


We were surprised that the quality of services teams scored significantly below technological features in these rankings. Perhaps this reflects the growing importance of insights and analytics in the industry and brand leaders’ desire to get more granular access to program data. Additionally, an increasing number of brands rely on agencies for program services, which may make the quality of available program management services a less critical factor in their choice of affiliate platform. 


It appears that the leading networks – which have historically led with service quality as a differentiator – are aware that added value services beyond basic program management will likely be important in the years ahead. All of the top networks have invested in more robust data platforms and analytics teams to offer maximum actionability as data become more comprehensive and transparent. 


The 2023 Industry Guide offers rich insights on both product experience and ratings of capabilities that can help you make better decisions about choosing the right tool for your needs. The Guide is free for download by active industry participants. Download this insights-rich resource now. 


Read other coverage of the 2023 Affiliate Guide Results:


2023 Affiliate Buyer’s Guide:, CJ, and Rakuten lead in platform usage in 2023

2023 Affiliate Buyer’s Guide: Richer respondent pool provides broad industry perspective

2023 Affiliate Buyer’s Guide: Networks and platforms cite biggest threats to their businesses

2023 Affiliate Buyer’s Guide: Which companies won awards this year?