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Target Affiliate Program + Geniuslink

Another one! The whole team here at Geniuslink is very excited to unveil Target.com as the ninth affiliate program we’ve added auto-affiliation support for. Whether you manage a parenting blog, publish kitchen appliance reviews on YouTube, or run a fast fashion look book, you’ll now be able to build Target.com affiliate links easier than ever before!

Overview

Founded by George Dayton as Goodfellow Dry Goods in June 1902 in Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA. The first Target store opened in Roseville, Minnesota in 1962 and today Target is one of the largest brick-and-mortar retailers in the US, second only to Walmart. 

Target offers a whole plethora of products across countless categories, so no matter what products you prefer to promote, they’ve got something for you! The most popular categories on Target.com are kitchen gadgets, electronics, baby gear, and kids apparel. 

Target.com is now ranked as the 186th most popular website in the world, 41st in the US and 26th for the “eCommerce and Shopping” category according to SimilarWeb.

 

Affiliate Program

Target offers a quality affiliate program that many affiliate marketers consider to be a strong rival to the Amazon Associates program. At the time our Surveying the Affiliate Landscape piece was written, it ranked 21st with a market share of 0.30% 

Renowned for its quality customer support experience, Target’s affiliate program has been managed by Impact since October 2014, after previously being run by eBay. The program offers commission rates between 1-8%, depending on the categories you’re promoting.

Interestingly, Target offers higher commission rates depending on how many sales you drive through your links each month (just like the “good ol’ days” on Amazon). Check it out:

Unfortunately, Target offers no commission at all for electronics, toys, or video games, and a flat 1% rate for anything in the ‘Health & Beauty’ category. If you’re promoting any of those products in your affiliate marketing projects, you’ll want to provide links to Amazon or another affiliate program altogether to ensure you’re optimizing all potential earnings.

One huge advantage that Target offers is the coveted 7-day attribution window, giving you a full week to earn from any referring clicks to send their way, as opposed to Amazon’s highly contested 24-hour window.

According to Skimlinks, the average earnings per click (EPC) for Target links is $0.05 and the average commission rate is 4.76%. Skimlinks also reports the average conversion rate at 1.38% with an average basket size of $77.13. Sovrn Commerce doesn’t provide any of these average data points at this time. By comparison, we see Amazon.com’s EPC around $0.05. 

As for geo-fragmentation, Target used to maintain a separate web storefront for international shoppers but it appears to have been pared down quite a bit. Back in 2015 Target announced intl.target.com, which initially shipped products to 200 countries around the world. Four years is an eternity in eCommerce years, and perhaps the reception wasn’t what Target had hoped, because these days this platform appears to be limited to Mexico and Canada. (Note: There doesn’t appear to be an affiliate program for intl.target.com)

The Target affiliate program’s terms and conditions can be viewed here, on Target’s Affiliate homepage. The terms are about 14 pages long and contain a few points of interest, which we’ve outlined for you below. Please be sure to read through the terms on your own as you must understand the nuances of the terms you’re bound to. 

  • 3.4 Link Manipulation: Similar to Amazon’s terms, if you’re running paid ads, you cannot use a Target affiliate link as the destination URL.
  • 5.1. Affiliate Link Disclosures: Every page of your website that contains affiliate links must contain a prominent FTC disclaimer that requires no scrolling to find. For more information, please refer to this article (Written with Amazon in mind, it’s still informative regarding FTC compliance with affiliate links.)

  • 6.2. Social Media: You’re allowed to post affiliate links to your own social media channels, but you’ll need to include the appropriate hashtags as determined by the FTC. (#ad is simplest, but #paidlink or #commissionsearned are other options. Follow this anchored link to the social media section of the above-mentioned blog article.)
  • 8.5. Order Inquiry Window: If you have reason to believe some sales you referred were not properly counted, you can submit details and request a review. By passing an order ID to Target, you are asking Target to verify the order ID and credit your account if the action failed to track. Amazon doesn’t offer anything like this!

Target + Geniuslink

While the Impact affiliate network dashboard offers effective tools for building out affiliate links, at times it can be a chore to take a particular Target product link and convert it into a fully functioning affiliate link. 

With this newly added support, any raw product link direct from Target.com can be affiliated easily using the Geniuslink dashboard alone. Rest easy, knowing that all clicks on your link will be sent to the correct destination using a properly formatted affiliate tracking link.

We call this process “Auto-affiliation” and it’s very simple to set up. All you need to do is grab your Partner ID from the Impact dashboard and drop it into the Geniuslink dashboard Affiliate page. Once we have that ID, any geni.us links you build for Target.com products will have your affiliate parameters appended automatically!

Alternatively, our rollout of Sovrn Commerce and Skimlinks support earlier this year also enables you to monetize Target.com links through either of these monetization platforms. There are many reasons for using Sovrn Commerce or Skimlinks, but signing up for the Target affiliate program directly and adding your Media Partner ID into Geniuslink allows you to keep 100% of your commissions earned from the program (vs. the ~ 75% that is paid out when using an affiliate aggregator).

Excited to dig in and get started using Geniuslink with the Target affiliate program? That’s great! If you‘re interested in experimenting with augmenting your existing Amazon affiliate links to also link to Target, we’ve got a couple of suggestions for you!

A/B Split Links – While the Amazon.com Associates program is often a mainstay for earning commissions from US-based clicks, we’d encourage you to test if it’s truly the best performing option for your audience. Our A/B Split Test links provide a means to closely track the relative performance of two or more affiliate programs using just one link!

For example, click this link a few times and note the destinations — geni.us/childcrib

Use an A/B Split Test link to compare the performance of Amazon’s affiliate program to Target’s.

Choice Pages – We continue to emphasize that curation and choice are good for the consumer and we’ve built out Choice Pages to enable you to promote a single product across multiple storefronts. Putting such choice in the hands of your visitors will improve their shopping experience and you’ll monetize the sale no matter which storefront they choose. By providing Choice Pages, we’re confident you’ll see a boost in overall conversions (and even total commissions). More info on how to set up a Choice Page can be found in our Knowledge Base.

You can see an example here — geni.us/thechild

With a Choice Page you can promote Amazon and Target affiliate links side by side in a clean, intuitive way.


Conclusion

When it comes to affiliate programs we support, there’s still more to come! We’re continuing to introduce support for additional affiliate programs—by way of auto-affiliation—so you can monetize your links across a host of different affiliate networks. After nine programs, there’s still a few more we’re excited to add!

If you need to monetize links from a particular program now and just can’t wait for Geniuslink auto-affiliation, you can get instant access to thousands of affiliate programs via our integrations with Sovrn Commerce and Skimlinks

A list of the affiliate programs we currently support can be found on our website and if you’d like to get involved, you can vote for which programs we’ll add next in our private Facebook group for Geniuslink users. 

We look forward to hearing from you!