Oliver Bonas Case Study

Established in 1993, Oliver Bonas is an independent British lifestyle store, designing their own take on fashion, jewellery and homeware. Currently, there are 61 stores throughout the UK, as well as the retailer’s flourishing online store, which is helping the brand to expand internationally.


Oliver Bonas chose to partner with the Rakuten Marketing Affiliate Network in 2008 due to its dedication to client service, expertise within the fashion and retail vertical, and the quality of publishers the network offers within this sector.

To support its affiliate strategy, the brand uses the Rakuten Marketing Affiliate Network on a self-managed basis. The strategy has grown from strength-to-strength and provided consistently impressive results.

Marketing Objectives & Strategy

The Oliver Bonas team wanted to utilise affiliate marketing to achieve two key objectives:

  • Increase online orders
  • Increase brand awareness

Working closely with the team’s Rakuten Marketing account manager, Oliver Bonas built strong partnerships with key publisher types, including content publishers, and student and shopping sites. In addition, the programme leveraged sub-networks and raised CPAs (cost-per-action) with top performing publishers to increase reach.

Rakuten Marketing worked to develop partnerships with publishers that reflect the brand’s unique values, prioritising quality over quantity. For example, a partnership was established with The Stylist Magazine via its Fashion Week competition. This partnership exceeded all expectations, driving more than 15,000 entries and 6,000 new contacts who opted-in to communications from the brand. This opened the brand to a new fashion-savvy audience and elevated its positioning in the fashion vertical.


During the first quarter of 2017, their campaigns generated the following results:

  • 136% increase in affiliate sales YoY
  • 161% increase in orders for the affiliate programme YoY
  • 184% increase in traffic YoY

Future plans

Such was the success of working through Rakuten Marketing’s Affiliate Network, Oliver Bonas has transitioned to Rakuten Marketing’s full-service offering to take further advantage of the strategic support the team receives on all aspects of its affiliate programme. The team will be looking to gain a deeper understanding of the customer journey and the performance of its affiliate partners using Rakuten Marketing’s insights and attribution platform.

“Our affiliate programme with the Rakuten Marketing Affiliate Network has been going from strength-to-strength and their understanding of the fashion and lifestyle sector has helped us achieve our planned online growth. We are looking forward to further success in 2017 as we move into Rakuten Marketing’s fully managed service and utilise their powerful insights and attribution platform, Cadence, to optimise our programme even further and grow our cross-border commerce on the back of their extensive international presence.”

Camilla Tress, Ecommerce Strategist at Oliver Bonas

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