Nordstrom Affiliate Program Review – What to Know Before Signing Up

When it comes to SEO-driven affiliate marketing, product diversity and brand quality play just as big of a part in commissions as perfectly optimized SEO.

You need a reliable and profitable company to promote, and perhaps no other company guarantees prestige, customer satisfaction, and steady commissions as Nordstrom and their affiliate program.

Before signing up for the Nordstrom affiliate program, you need to know that all categories on the website can earn a 2% commission. Additionally, a grasp on what products and brands rank higher than others is crucial to making a profit with Nordstrom affiliate marketing.

Turning a profit with the Nordstrom affiliate program is doable, but there are many benefits and drawbacks with Nordstrom that you need to know before leaping.

This article will tell you everything you need to know about the program, what to look out for based on your target audience, and more.

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The Nordstrom Affiliate Program: An Overview

nordstrom affiliate program review

Before we get into all the specifics of the Nordstrom affiliate program, take a look at this informative video that lays out the details:

Suppose you are a fashion blogger or working in the home decor and accessories niche.

In that case, the Nordstrom affiliate program offers a great way to earn a modest but steady 2% commission on most of the website’s products. 

Commission rates are listed on a fluctuating scale of 2%-11%.

However, most Nordstrom affiliates consistently report commissions at a firm of 2%.

But since Nordstrom is certainly not lacking in luxury items, this could be a lucrative and worthwhile venture. 

Before we get into the dynamics of how the Nordstrom affiliate program can work for you and the possible downsides, let’s take a more in-depth look at Nordstrom.

Nordstrom Company Profile

Since 1901, Nordstrom has continuously placed a focused value on providing premium fashion selections that are easily accessible to consumers.

Luxury fashion brands sit side-by-side with premium accessories and home furnishings to present a diverse and excellently-crafted selection.

With the rise of e-commerce in the 21st-century, Nordstrom expanded its sale of luxury brands to the convenience of online ordering.

What Makes Nordstrom a Profitable Affiliate Program? 

Since many high-end fashion brands source their inventories to companies like Nordstrom for a wider mass-market reach, this opens up the avenues for promotion and marketing exponentially, which is a perfect opportunity for fashion bloggers seeking to make commission and drive sales for 

The results are based on your particular niche in terms of the fashion you are seeking to promote.

This is why Nordstrom is such a great affiliate program to consider since a wide range of brands are represented on; the more diverse the selection, the better the opportunities become for you in terms of varied promotion techniques over so many categories. 

Although a 2% commission may seem well in the range of the general affiliate standard, Nordstrom’s wide selection presents more opportunities for you to promote, making your profits add up nicely by the month. 

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How Does the Nordstrom Affiliate Program Work?

The program is simple to join, just be aware that Nordstrom can be really picky about the types of websites they will bring on board. 

Joining is as easy as filling out the application on the Nordstrom website.

Nordstrom partners with Rakuten Advertising to oversee the company’s affiliate program.

Rakuten manages many luxury high-end brands, and retailers, therefore, the selection process can be rigorous and highly selective. 

Additionally, Nordstrom is consistently ranked on the NYSE (New York Stock Exchange), so you will want to make sure you have a clean, crisp, and well-organized website.

What Can You Do to Get Approved?

According to the Nordstrom affiliate agreement, the company reserves the right to refuse an application if it is deemed that a website does not meet the company’s metrics for quality and content standards. 

Nordstrom, in conjunction with Rakuten, will typically assess the following when making approval decisions:

  • The specific niche of your website
  • The type of website (shopping, fashion blogging, coupons and rewards, a targeted fashion niche that ranks well)
  • Targeted audience age and geographical location
  • Site layout
  • Site traffic and volume

Since getting approved by Rakuten and Nordstrom can be highly competitive, let’s take a look at each of the above criteria to better your chances at approval.

Website Niche

You are probably already aware that you need a unique niche to target to make your website excel with affiliate marketing.

When it comes to attracting a luxury brand like Nordstrom, a website that focuses on a popular niche within the Nordstrom brand is likely to get more attention than a website specializing in general shopping. 

Study Nordstrom selling metrics and point your attention towards an aspect of one or more – such as shoes, accessories, dresses, swimsuits, you get the idea.

Tailor your content to provide in-depth reviews of one or more of these niches and preferably high end and luxury content for the selected option.

Website Type 

Nordstrom and Rakuten will also want to analyze the main theme and target of your website, which also fits in with your niche.

Nordstrom is a luxury brand, but targeting top-selling brands and the best prices and exclusive deals on select items within a chosen brand will also attract attention.

Consumers of every tax bracket love savings, so keep it luxury-themed but also focused on promoting savings and rewards. 

If you run a fashion blog, this is likely the most significant selling point for Nordstrom within the consideration process.

Well-researched and expert content provides excellent selling points when it comes to customers clicking on an affiliate link.

The more passion you write with, the better the ability to close a sale comes into focus.

Audience Age and Location

Writing about fashion is sometimes easier to control when you target a certain age bracket and stick with it.

The beauty of Nordstrom is that no age is necessarily overlooked in favor of another.

For just as many designer swimsuits aimed at youth, there are designer dresses and apparel available for a more mature age range. 

The best method: tailor your website or blog to be as diverse as possible to drive more affiliate sales.

If you are set on focusing on one audience range, that will work too but continuously create useful content to better sell your niche. 

Geographic location can also play a part. Unlike, Nordstrom only ships items to 30 different countries; therefore, this will create discrepancies in potential buyers who cannot deliver items.

Geo-targeting and creating SERPs for most countries in which Nordstrom ships are a great way to pass this part of the approval process. 

Think about it: by customizing your website to convert to user-friendly layouts and currency conversions, as well as language customization, you are making the process much easier for international visitors to your website, which is a crucial component in gaining approval by affiliates who specialize in international shopping.  

Website Layout

The look and tone of your website is the first aspect that Nordstrom will notice when reviewing your application.

The visual layout and navigation techniques of a website are typically the make or break factors that luxury brands will remember when making a final decision in approval. 

Due to Nordstrom’s luxury brand status, you will want your website to be easy to navigate, well designed and functional, and have a clean and crisp visual layout.

Since fashion is a seasonal business, design your website to reflect timeless themes while still maintaining a contemporary aesthetic.

Website Traffic and Volume

Many affiliates will take a chance on new and underperforming websites, but Rakuten and Nordstrom are definitely not one of those affiliates.

If you are experiencing low traffic, this will mean that the volume of sales you convert will not be attractive to Nordstrom.

This company wants a luxury target and a large volume of traffic to consider offering its affiliate services.

Aim high in providing useful and brand-specific content to increase your site’s traffic if you consider Nordstrom’s application.

All of these aspects need to be considered or approved upon if you want to land the Nordstrom affiliate program.

If your application is successful, you will also need to promote Nordstrom successfully to remain in the program.

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How Can You Promote Nordstrom Upon Approval?

If you can pass the stringent protocols laid out by Nordstrom and Rakuten, you will find that promoting the company will take some serious marketing strategies.

Thankfully, Rakuten provides an excellent package of promotional benefits to make this happen.

Let’s take an in-depth look at each.

Email Swipes

Email swipes play a useful role in affiliate marketing, especially if you are in a dry spell when it comes to producing new content for your blog or website.

The beauty of being a Nordstrom affiliate is the customized email swipes tailored specifically for Nordstrom.

Rakuten provides you with 103 email swipes that will entertain and engage your subscribers into closing sales.

Product Links

Nordstrom will provide nearly 1 million product links to be used on your website or blog.

This is an adequate amount, but you will need to make your content and calls-to-action stellar to use the link to the best of its ability.

Product reviews are a great way to get the best out of every link you choose to use. Nordstrom has such a wide variety of products to choose from, which will allow you to branch out your content to cover multiple brands.

Banners and Images

Nordstrom and Rakuten will provide you with 400+ banners and images to use on your website.

This will aid your efforts in promoting the product you wish to sell. Be sure to use these banners and images in the best places throughout your content without seeming to inundate your audience.

A well-placed product link with an accompanying banner and image in a call-to-action is a perfect way to ensure a sale. 

These additional features can make or break a sale.

Promotional Tips to Consider 

If you are new to affiliate marketing, make sure you always think about what products can drive a sale.

Always consider promoting brands that you are knowledgeable with; your content will be the deciding factor in getting a subscriber or reader to click the link and buy the product.

Always prioritize exclusive offers and discount prices first when surveying the brand you committed to selling. 

Keep your website free of spam and malware, Nordstrom and Rakuten want to see a clear and informative layout that urges readers to invest in your content fully. 

Nordstrom will also expect you to promote the company’s selling points that are the foundations of their business.

Always mention free shipping and returns, friendly and knowledgeable customer service, complimentary stylist services, and customer reward points in an organic and informative tone for each product. 

Rakuten and Nordstrom provide excellent and proper help in terms of promotion but always add your unique voice and selling points within your content.

Use the email swipes sparingly and only if you are running dry on content.  

With the approval process and promotional techniques covered, let’s look at the real benefits and disadvantages of the Nordstrom affiliate program as a whole.

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What Are the Benefits of the Nordstrom Affiliate Program?

If your fashion or shopping niche falls into the top-tier section of luxury and high-end brands and products, Nordstrom’s affiliate program is a worthwhile investment.

The commission may not be extravagant, yet catering to a specific niche in this category of shoppers will likely generate consistent sales. 

Let’s take a look at the benefits of joining Nordstrom:

  • The program is free to join. If you are receiving a lot of traffic to your website or blog, it is a no-brainer to let Nordstrom in on the traffic. What’s better is that you only need to position the links and images to match your content, and Rakuten will do all the rest. Sales tracking, referrals, and overall revenue are handled completely by Rakuten and is available for you to view anytime. 
  • Nordstrom will handle all order processing, shipping, returns, and customer service. The only work you need to put in is producing compelling copy and link placement to drive the purchase. 
  • You do not need to hit any mandated targets or worry about discrepancies in pay. A monthly check is sent to you every month guaranteed – no matter the commission amount. Support is always available through Rakuten if you ever need assistance. 
  • The Nordstrom affiliate program requires very little output from you. Rakuten handles all of the leg work and includes many additional features to help customize your pages.

What Are the Disadvantages of the Nordstrom Affiliate Program?

The cold hard truth is that a 2% commission for the majority of sales is not as lucrative as more popular affiliates such as Amazon and eBay; if you are looking to make this a full-time job, you will likely be disappointed.

But this is only based on what you can put into your website or blog; if you want to keep driving sales, keep producing engaging content and product reviews to promote as many products as possible. 

Let’s take a look at some of the disadvantages of using the Nordstrom affiliate program:

  • You will need to implement a strategy to create informative content. Nordstrom will monitor how you use their links to convert a sale. Therefore, you will not be able to just drop a link to a product without using content to engage the customer with the product; you will need to sell Nordstrom as well. 
  • The approval process set out by Rakuten is strict. When combined with Nordstrom’s protocols, this makes for a challenging approval process for such a limited appeal when it comes to shoppers only seeking luxury brands. 
  • You will need to have a website that generates a lot of traffic to pass both Rakuten and Nordstrom’s policies. Unless you are using this as a secondary blog or website to work in conjunction with your main website, this may not be worth the hassle. 
  • Nordstrom also expects each of its product links to have accompanying information related to company policies and promotions. This may not always align with the tone of your content. You have to be sure to plug-in free shipping and returns and copywriting skills related to Nordstrom to maintain an acceptable profile as a Nordstrom affiliate.


Is the Nordstrom affiliate program worth it?

If your niche is tailored to luxury fashion, you will have better results with a company like Nordstrom than you would with Amazon or eBay.

You will need to have a great-looking website with helpful and informative content that generates a lot of traffic to be approved, and the return investment may not be as worthwhile as the stringent approval process turns out to be. 

This program is certainly worth considering if you are prioritizing the fashion of luxury brands over general shopping.


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