# How to Read Affiliate Program Statistics & Calculate Commission

I’ve had a merchant approach me with a basic question, but since many other merchants who are also new to affiliate marketing may wonder about the same things, instead of just replying to him via email, I am posting my reply below.

This particular merchant is considering starting his first-ever affiliate program on ShareASale, and is currently crunching numbers to calculate an attractive affiliate commission rate. He wrote:

I’m trying to figure out what commission I should offer to affiliates.  (I know from your blog that I need to leave room for special deals, super affiliates, etc.)  SAS gave me a demo affiliate account to view merchants in similar categories.  Here’s the problem: I can’t figure out how SAS is calculating their statistics…

…and the following example is given:

He is then asking me (a) how to read the data given in the “additional information” column (such as EPC, reversal rate, etc), and (b) how to use it to calculate a competitive affiliate commission for his niche (in this case, it is the “Education” vertical).

Let me answer the first question first:

• The 7 Day and 30 Day stats given above reflect affiliate program statistics for rolling periods of 7 and 30 days respectively
• EPC in this particular example stands for affiliate earnings (average across the program) per 100 clicks sent to the merchant [more on EPC here]
• The Reversal value reflects the reversal rate of affiliate-referred sales/leads (e.g.: if the reversal rate is 10%, then every 10th affiliate transaction (and consequently commission paid) has been reversed)
• Avg. Sale stands for the average affiliate-referred order value over a given period of time
• Avg. Commission shows you the actual average affiliate payout per transaction (e.g.: if it’s \$74.15, then this is the average payout affiliates have earned from every sale referred)