What’s the Difference between Affiliate and Partner Marketing?

Distinctions between affiliate and partner marketing are frequently muddled. Affiliate marketing is based on per-action compensation, whereas the members of partner marketing are compensated exclusively for promotion. Because everyone employs both techniques to earn revenue, many companies don’t even differentiate them anymore. Also, it would even be true to call affiliate marketing a part of partner one. One way or another, both have been demonstrated to increase brand sales while providing publishers with lucrative options.

Despite their similarities, they do differ. If this has grabbed your interest, stick to this blog as we are about to dwell more upon this topic.


Before we start describing the dissimilarities between these two notions, it is essential to characterize them in general terms.

Affiliate marketing involves recruiting individuals who create content so they advertise the needed thing via their media platforms. Their main task is to place relevant links to your website/platform on their social media accounts, blogs, etc. Then, it’s time to convince viewers to follow those links. When a person clicks on such a link and, for example, buys something from your site, an affiliate gets a commission from the purchase.

Any collaboration with other people or companies that helps advertise and/or sell your brand’s products or services is referred to as partner marketing. Contrary to affiliate marketing, here, the third party might be a company or person.

The following are examples of partner marketing:

  • Retailers are people that offer your items in their stores.
  • Distribution companies acquire your goods and resell them to other businesses.
  • Brokers. These individuals assist in the formation of distribution connections between businesses.

As we previously noted, affiliates are seen as an integral element of partner marketing. Even if they do not manage the goods directly, they still advertise your items in collaboration with your firm.


Now that the basics have been covered, we can proceed to the contrast features of the aforementioned notions.

There are three main criteria against which we establish the differences: roles in the industry, how members of each method manage the process, and what the reward is.

  1. Affiliate market members usually consist of social media stars and bloggers. They do not necessarily have to use your product or even own it. All they have to do is showcase goods that their target audience is likely to love. Their counterparts deal more with sales as they get revenue from actually selling your goods.
  2. The affiliate marketing process depends solely on promoting. There is no need to open new selling points and create sales channels as it is for partner marketing.
  3. The reward system for affiliates is represented by the cash commission they receive after someone makes a purchase via an affiliate link. Other partners have a range of different possible rewards, including cash. For example, they may be eligible for discounts on the items they purchase and distribute.

Final Word

Affiliate and partner marketing schemes have distinct features. However, businessmen today tend not to think about their differences and to apply them both to gain the best profit. Use the gained knowledge, decide what appeals to you the most, and start making money now!