Telecom Sector Insights
Having recently held our annual telecoms sector event Connect 2016 on 17th August, we’ve focused this month’s sector insights report on Telecoms, highlighting performance from our Broadband and Mobiles partners across the network. Broadband penetration rates across the UK are predicted to rise to 95% by 2020 (PWC 2016), and with several providers offering cheaper and quicker to install 4G mobile broadband options, traditional home broadband offerings may struggle in years to come, especially as 4G grows in availability (uSwitch 2016).
In the Mobiles sphere, SIM-Only options have become increasing popular, replacing typical contract handset purchases, giving customers greater flexibility and lower monthly payments. Comparison site uSwitch reported that contracts accounted for 81% of sales in 2013, and had dropped to just under 60% in 2015, whilst SIM-Only grew from 19% to 42% for the same period (uSwitch 2016).
Looking at the affiliate sector data for both Broadband and Mobiles partners, we’ve witnessed the impact of seasonal events such as Black Friday on the telecom sector. Traditionally driving performance in electronics and retail more widely, this event has created artificial seasonal peaks around Black Friday and Cyber Monday events in the past two years, with the 2015 Black Friday period equalling the broadband typical peaks seen in January earlier in the year. For further reading on the sector, latest trends and affiliate tactics, you can also download our Connect whitepaper published here.
Focusing on 2016 year to date, we’ve seen a strong EPC across the Broadband sector at £2.34, driven by nearly 300 sale active affiliates, earning an average commission of £60.19 per sale. The conversion rate for the sector stands at 3.9%, with almost 49,000 clicks seen each day.
July 2016 actually saw stronger performance than January this year, accounting for 17% of transactions, compared to 16% of sales in January. Traffic however still spiked in January accounting for 18% of traffic witnessed so far this year.
On a device level mobile (smartphone + tablet) accounts for 42% of traffic and 37% of transactions, with smartphones outpacing tablets with 19% and 18% share of transactions respectively. On a publisher type level price comparison sites have tended to dominate with 58% of total transactions, followed by cashback converting 18% of sales.
Mobile Network Insights
For 2016 year to date, we’ve seen an EPC of £0.67 for Mobile Networks, converting slightly lower than broadband partners at 3.31% up to July 2016. On average we see over 30,000 clicks across the sector each day from nearly 340 sale active affiliates. Affiliates can earn on average £20.24 from each sale with July also driving peak performance so far this year.
We also saw a peak in transactions in April this year, and given the impact of Black Friday/ Cyber Monday in previous years, we will likely see further performance spikes for Mobiles in Q4 2016.
Mobile devices account for 45% of traffic across the sector and 38% of transactions, with smartphones driving 20% of all Mobile sales. Interestingly the smartphone average commission is higher than the overall average at £22.50 per sale, demonstrating this device type’s impact on affiliate earnings.
From a publisher type perspective price comparison sites account for 44% of transactions, followed by cashback driving 23% of total sales. Content sites also account for 13% and discount code sites convert 6% of sales.
Mobile Reseller Insights
Turning our attention to Mobile Resellers, we’ve seen a high EPC of £1.31 across the sector for year to date, with an average of nearly 27,000 clicks per day from 267 sale active affiliates. Conversely to Broadband and Mobile Networks, Resellers saw peak transactions in March this year, whilst traffic peaked in January.
The average commission is so far at £33.42 per sale for 2016, with a relatively strong conversion rate of 3.93%. Mobile Resellers is the best performing sector for mobile devices, with 49% of traffic from mobiles (25% from smartphones alone). 44% of transactions are from mobile devices, with smartphones converting 21% of sales.
Looking at performance by publisher type, we also see a dominance of price comparison, holding a 50% share of total transactions. Cashback sites convert 22%, whilst discount code sites drive 12% of transactions, double the share they hold for Mobile Network partners.
The following Tableau Public report is an interactive report with our sector data. Play around with the filters in the report below to see how the data changes by sub sector and look at various metrics such as transactions, traffic and commission.