The Nordstrom Affiliate Program | Is 2% Worth It?

HomeAffiliate ProgramsThe Nordstrom Affiliate Program | Is 2% Worth It?

Please note that affiliate links may be included in some posts.

If you’re a fashion blogger, you’re probably scouring the internet looking for big-brand, high-converting affiliate programs.

Nordstrom definitely fits the bill. Nordstrom is a luxury department store with access to a variety of premium brands.

In this post, I’ll examine the Nordstrom affiliate program’s earning potential and promotional strategies to push converting traffic to this century-old brand.

About Nordstrom

According to Wikipedia, “Nordstrom Inc. is an American chain of luxury department stores, also operating in Canada and headquartered in Seattle, Washington. Founded in 1901 by Swedish American John W. Nordstrom and Carl F. Wallin, the company began as a shoe retailer and expanded its inventory to include clothing, accessories, handbags, jewelry, cosmetics, and fragrances.

Select Nordstrom stores also include wedding and home furnishings departments.

The company also has in-house cafes, restaurants and espresso bars. Nordstrom, Inc.’s common stock is publicly traded on the NYSE under the symbol JWN.”

They recently started a YouTube channel- it gives you a sense of the company ‘vibe’:

Earning Potential

The Nordstrom affiliate program sits inside of Rakuten.

nordstrom affiliate program

At the time of this writing, they are offering a 2% Commission on everything but gift cards.

The terms specify that you can earn “2 % commission {For all products not covered in specific SKU Lists}, 0 % commission [Gift Card 0%] on selected goods is offered to you on items purchased by visitors who are referred to us from your site.”

These are the eligible commission categories:

  • Clothing & Accessories
  • Accessories
  • Men
  • Women
  • Health & Beauty
  • Cosmetics
  • Department Store
  • Clothing

Keyword research

Below, I extracted 800+ of Nordstrom’s top-performing organic keywords.

I used the Ahrefs software to create this list. It provides monthly search volume, keyword difficulty score and the position Nordstrom ranks for the particular keyword as of April 2019.

Whether you are doing SEO or building out Boards on your Pinterest account, understanding the type of search terms Nordstrom ranks for is a good way to figure out a traffic and content strategy, especially if you are interested in promoting Nordstrom.

If you look at their rankings, you can see that they rang for a ton of big-name brand terms. What I often find with sites like these that sell a lot of other companies merchandise is they end up ranking for these huge terms like Kate Spade, Patagonia, Nike, Adidas Etc.

They don’t just rank for those single terms, either.

Using Ahrefs I’m able to filter even deeper by a keyword like “adidas” and I see that they have great rankings for terms like:

  1. adidas shoes
  2. adidas nmd
  3. adidas ultra boost
  4. adidas superstar
  5. adidas originals
  6. adidas boost
  7. adidas alphabounce
  8. adidas pants
  9. adidas gazelle
  10. adidas sneakers

This is an important concept to understand. While the primary keyword “Adidas” is a massive, competitive term, if you go a little bit deeper, and peek behind the curtain, you’ll see that there are some really lucrative keywords that aren’t as competitive to rank for.

If I wanted to monetize with Nordstrom, I might target some of these branded search terms.

And I’m not talking solely SEO, either. Take a look at this YouTube video that is optimized for the term “Adidas Superstar”:

At the time of this writing, it’s trending towards over 400,000 views.

These snazzy, white sneakers are pretty popular. The good thing with fashion, it plays very well on social.

adidas Superstar Sneaker Nordstrom

That means you’re not restricted to building out an SEO fashion blog. Instead, you can leverage social media channels like Instagram, YouTube, Twitter and Pinterest to promote your website that contains the Nordstrom affiliate links, or even experiment with directly affiliate-linking to Nordstrom.

Brand Affiliate Opportunities

I really like the branded affiliate opportunity is here.

Often times, these big name brands don’t have their own affiliate programs, so working with a fashion retailer that sells multiple brands like Nordstrom, Zara, H&M, or Macy’s enables you to monetize with these brands even if they don’t have an affiliate program, or if you can get into it.

Fashion Affiliate Links

One thing you should be aware of, fashion is incredibly seasonal, which means products go in and out of stock very quickly.

One day you might be earning good money promoting the Adidas Superstar shoe on Nordstrom, but maybe it gets discontinued or goes out of stock. Then your affiliate link is going to a page with no product or even a 404.

I would suggest using affiliate link management software like ThirstyAffiliates.

This is the plugin I use in WordPress to manage all my affiliate links.

For example, say you are promoting the Adidas Superstar sneaker, you could cloak your link using ThirstyAffiliates, to be “” and have complete control about where that link directs.

If Nordstrom sells out of yes Adidas Superstar sneaker, you can easily edit it to redirect the traffic somewhere else- perhaps the updated model when it’s released.

One thing to note, though, Amazon does not like link cloaking- so don’t use it to push traffic to the Amazon Associates affiliate program.

It’s also a smart way to test different offers.

There are a number of retailers currently selling this shoe- you could experiment pushing traffic to Nordstrom’s, Macy’s, and even eBay if you really wanted to.

This is a quick and dirty way to test the conversion capabilities of the different affiliate programs you participate in.

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Doing SEO

If you are into SEO, the way I would get traffic is by producing long-form, listicle-style content.

For example, for something like the Adidas Superstar sneaker, I might find 25 images on Instagram of celebrities wearing the shoe. You could create a BuzzFeed-style listicle post that captures organic traffic as well as social traffic.

Inside of that post, you could insert some calls to action I purchase the sneaker on Nordstrom.

You could experiment with sprinkling buttons into your content and using your ThirstyAffiliates cloaked URL with anchor text like view price or by now, for example.

I Love Listicles

I’ve written extensively about my product review formula and why I like listicles so much. In a nutshell, a listicle enables you to easily write thousands and thousands of words in an organized manner without coming across as an over-enthusiastic SEO trying to satisfy an insane word count.

In addition, if you are outsourcing the writing to something like HireWriters, It’s a much easier content formula for the writer who does need to hit a target word count.

As well, user engagement statistics really matter to search engine rankings. You will get a higher click through to your website from the SERPs with listicle posts, in my experience, because people like the promise of clearly organized information.

Summing Up

If you run a fashion blog, this could be a good offer to promote. As I’ve mentioned, Nordstrom has access to a lot of premium brands that don’t have their own affiliate programs.

Nike, for example.

Granted, 2% commission isn’t great, but it’s worth testing.

You could get some quick feedback using ThirstyAffiliates to automatically affiliate-link “Nike” keywords on your sneaker site, for example, and track clicks/conversions.

Last Updated on November 15, 2023 by Ryan Nelson

Ryan Nelson is a full-stack online marketer. I help people discover niches to build passive-income online businesses (for free!).



  1. Nordstrom’s affiliate program is basically a big con. They’ll send you a good private offer, initially, to make you advertise their products. Then once they deem you’ve marketed their products enough, they’ll let the offer expire and won’t renew it, causing all your initial effort to be wasted.

    Marketer beware before you invest in Nordstorm.


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