What Is High Ticket In Affiliate Marketing?

Updated: April 21, 2022
by Cristian Morales

There is intense competition in the online affiliate marketing industry. Almost alarmingly, more and more sites are appearing on the web with enticing special offers for new prospects. Consumers become more sceptical of recommendations as they learn that many of them are made by affiliates in order to earn a commission. 

With that said, if a large return on investment is promised, some consumers show a good interest in products even if they are high ticket items. Some people are willing to pay more than they can afford if the benefit they are advised is larger than they expected. 

The benefit they appreciate is not just a return on investment as financial gain, but every kind of attractive possibility in daily lives. Saving money over time is one. Learning material is another one as it can be useful in various ways in years to come. The opportunity to connect with new groups of people is another one. High ticket products or services can attract any type of audience. 

If you are tired of making a few dollars worth of commission every now and again and wish to take a bold step with your work from home business, I hope you agree with what I’m going to explain in today's post. It's time to deal with the basic aspects that are associated with the functioning of a higher level of affiliate marketing; high ticket sales.

What Is High Ticket In Affiliate Marketing?

What Is “High Ticket” In Affiliate Marketing?

Simply put, "high ticket" means a high unit price in affiliate marketing, usually $1,000 and above. Affiliates receive a percentage of the sale price from the seller as a commission, therefore the higher a product price is, the higher the commission will be, i.e. "high ticket".

In business, a high ticket item is referred to as a premium product or service. It’s usually an upgraded version of what’s already available, which means users can receive a superior product/service in exchange for a price of higher value.

The term should be differentiated from luxury items such as private jets, Rolex watches and villa hire that only a group of very wealthy people regularly enjoy. Those luxury items may be “high ticket” for ordinary folks but not for them, therefore ordinary affiliate marketers are very likely to struggle to sell. 

In affiliate marketing, multiple items are sold as part of a sales funnel strategy. The prospects are offered a lower cost item as a taster, or even given a free product to start with. As they become familiar with what they’re being offered, they also become more interested in buying more expensive products with higher quality.

Example Of High Ticket Item In Affiliate Marketing

A training course is one of the typical high ticket items in affiliate marketing. 

The most popular way for course tutors to promote their course is to offer a free introductory webinar, then at the end of the webinar, they try to persuade the student viewers to buy a full course, typically priced at around $1,000. For affiliate marketers, they can earn anywhere from 25% - 75% commission. It means that they can earn $250 - $750 each time they successfully sell the course to someone. We can say it’s a high ticket compared to other affiliate products like Amazon, as each unit is very high. I hope this is understandable to you.

A training course can also be sold as part of a sales funnel. In this case, prospects are encouraged to buy an upsell after upsell, and eventually, they can spend a lot of money. It goes like this:-

  • Free ebook offer - Useful introduction to the course content.
  • Premium guidebooks ($10 - $100) or a set of webinars ($200 - $1,000)
  • Optionally, a monthly coaching program subscription ($50 - $100 per month)
  • Necessary tools (any amount, they can be one-off or monthly subscription.)
  • Seminar event (as high as $10,000)

As you can see, if you are an affiliate marketer promoting such a training course, it is possible to earn several thousand dollars for successfully selling the entire course to just one person. 

Contests and High Ticket Sales

What is a prize contest to do with a high ticket in affiliate marketing? Product sellers often run a contest for the affiliates and reward financial prizes to the ones who sell a large number of units.

Because the product/service is not easily affordable by many, giving prizes can become more attractive to the affiliates. They usually prepare a different website URL that’s accessible by the affiliates and announce the prize details and the instructions.

Prizes are usually one-time payouts of extra money. But sometimes they can be a special invitation to VIP club membership or, expensive gifts such as cars, vacations, watches, etc. 

The prizes can also be rewarded randomly to any affiliates who have successfully sold at least one product, just like a “lucky spin” prize draw which is also a popular way. Quite an interesting proposition, which affiliates can take full advantage of. They can evaluate all the opportunities guaranteed by the product owners.

In any way, contests add a certain percentage of boost in sales, regardless of the types of value of the prizes. 

What do you think? Selling a high ticket item can be all-or-nothing, extremely hard, and demanding for affiliates. If you sell one, it can pay the whole month's worth of bills, but if you cannot find anyone who can afford to pay for such an expensive product/service, you’ll be left with nothing. That’s why the contests can be a great approach for a seller to motivate affiliates to promote more.

Referral Bonuses For Prospects

Referral bonus

With a high ticket product or service, buyers are often encouraged to contact others to spread the word. They will be rewarded a commission, usually at the same rate as affiliates for recommending the product/service so that they can cover their costs. Several referral gifts are often used, designed to promote offerings and attract different types of new prospects.

This method is considered the most effective for growth in the number of customers. This way, the moment when a prospect decides to make a purchase, they know they can get some money back if they refer to others, so they can also focus on advertising. Hopefully, you understand what I'm saying.

Recommending High Ticket Items To Friends

Quite another thing is to recommend it to friends. Here is what the difference is. Many people make purchases just for curiosity to start but quickly realize that they made a mistake paying a lot of money. Many people change their minds during the cooling-off guarantee period and ask for a refund. For a seller, the administration with regard to making refunds is unavoidable, but still extra work. If a buyer recommends it to a friend, because it’s a word of mouth marketing, the risk of a refund can be less. Partly because they are more convinced after receiving more detailed, real information through a friend who has already verified information and currently enjoys the product/service.

Usually, for the recommendation to a friend, the commission rate that the user receives is also the same as affiliates.

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The Commission Withdrawals

Usually, affiliate commissions that you earn can be withdrawn in a variety of ways. They can be sent to your bank account, PayPal account, or credit card, or in recent years, in cryptocurrency, sent to your crypto wallet.

With high-ticket items, each unit of commission is high in value, which means there are some security checks before affiliates can receive commissions. Also filling out an appropriate tax form can often be mandatory, though not always. For some self-developed affiliate programs, tax affairs are entirely up to your responsibility, and therefore it is worth checking the rules first of all.

Do I Have To Buy It Before I Can Become An Affiliate?

You may be wondering if there are some high ticket affiliate products that you can promote without buying them. The answer is yes, but rarely.

The number of affiliate marketers is ever-increasing year on year, and there are too many newbies trying to promote high ticket items in all kinds of wrong ways. For example, giving false information about the product or making false, unrealistic income claims as a result of using the product. These deceitful sales tactics will only end up refund claims, which will lead to more administration, extra reverse charge costs, etc. for the product owners.

This is why most of the high ticket items can only let real users become affiliates so that only the ones who believe in the product can promote in the most genuine way, without the risk of misleading new prospects.

Incentives For VIP Users

Incentives For VIP Users

With any kind of funnel sale, some buyers take some introductory offers and then give up looking to buy upsells. They may have a variety of reasons. Time has elapsed since the last purchase and they’ve lost interest, have some doubts, or simply they cannot afford to make any more purchases.

Incentives for VIP users can be a great way to encourage them to consider buying higher ticket items. The incentives can be secret bonuses, free access to a VIP area for a certain period, or a cash-back offer. The incentives are set out by the product owner, and each owner has different ideas. Such incentives can significantly persuade your referrals to regain interest. They are said to be one of the most effective ways to boost your affiliate commissions.

Can I Add My Own Bonuses?

With some affiliate programs, product owners allow some successful entrepreneurs to add their own bonuses to your referrals. With the high ticket promotional method, you may have to contact the product owner and ask for special permission. 

For example, if you have been selling some similar products and have some existing referrals through other products, you may wish to provide your own loyalty bonus to your referrals for purchasing that particular high ticket item. If your loyalty bonus is acceptable and in line with the high ticket item or not can only be decided by the owner. It’s entirely, case by case, therefore it’s worth asking the owner directly.

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How About Luxury Items?

Luxury items and premium-quality items should not be confused, as I explained earlier. 

As an affiliate marketer, a genuine sale can only be made when a person recommends something based on their own experience. My point of view is probably similar to yours. If you perceive high-ticket products as not-so-easily affordable because they are too luxurious for you, then you're unlikely to accomplish good affiliate sales results. Because you’ll only be targeting the audience who may make a purchase extremely occasionally, or even for a once in a lifetime opportunity. People who regularly buy such products have a higher standard of living than you, so they will not listen to you.

High Ticket In Affiliate Marketing: Conclusion

Selling high ticket items in affiliate marketing might sound like a better way than selling low-cost items to you, but if you think about the accessibility and affordability to ordinary people as well as various economic standards of different countries, that’s never the case. It may be easier to sell a $10 item to 1,000 people than to sell a $1,000 item to 10 people. Are you of the same opinion? I hope so.

After all, it’s up to your marketing skills and experiences. If you are already an expert in the niche that you’ve been promoting and already know what kind of audience you should target, high ticket products/services should be the ones you should be looking for.

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About the author 

Cristian Morales

Freelance writer and graphic designer with a can-do attitude. I became independent after spending 6 years in the hospitality industry and 5 years in banking & finance. I'm an all-rounder guy, open to working with like-minded people.

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