Affiliate gross merchandise sales rose 4% in the first half of March compared with the prior year, despite uncertainty prompted by the COVID-19 outbreak. Most categories have seen an increase, with the exception of the accessories and jewelry and travel sectors.
The Pepperjam Affiliate Marketing Sales Index, released Tuesday, analyzes the performance of about 685 brands in 10 retail categories between March 1 and March 18.
Not surprisingly, sales declined 21% from March 10 to March 13 compared to the prior year for the period between March 10 and March 11. By March 14, sales recovered and rose 32%, compared with the year-ago day.
The health and beauty category experienced the biggest jump of 41% in terms of affiliate gross merchandise sales. Sales declined between March 10 and March 11, with the bottom falling 16%. Sales recovered on March 12, rising 173% during the same day in the prior year.
In the category of clothing and apparel, sales declined between March 9 and March 14, with the bottom dropping 77%. Overall gross merchandise sales fell 6%. Sales recovered on March 17, rising 55% compared with the same day in the prior year.
The home and garden category experienced a similar decline and recovery. Sales declined for the home and garden category between March 13 and March 14, with the bottom dropping 24%. Sales recovered on March 15, rising 109% compared with the same day in the prior year. Overall gross merchandise sales rose 28%.
The accessories and jewelry category has taken the largest fall with sales dropping 37%. Sales have been down throughout the month.
Travel is another casualty, with affiliate sales declining 57%.
With many U.S. consumers working from home, sales attributable to the affiliate channel rose 66% during the first half of the month. In fact, the report states that sales have been up on a daily basis throughout the month with the exception of a few sporadic days.
Food and drink rose 94%. Sales have been up on a daily basis throughout the month peaking at 542% growth on March 8, during the same day in the prior year and have surpassed 125% since March 14.