What are Tier 1, 2 and 3 countries?

What are Tier 1, 2 and 3 countries? Differences in driving traffic to these regions

In affiliate marketing the countries of the world are customarily divided into Tier 1, 2, 3, depending on their level of economic development, population income, GDP, technological advancements and other parameters. 

That’s why, when planning any sort of ad campaign and traffic-driving strategy, you need to have a clear understanding of which Tier you’re working with and what sort of characteristics each one has,  as well as level segmentation and betting prices. 

Features and segmentation of each Tier

Tier 1

This level includes the most developed countries with stable economies, cutting-edge tech and wide access to the Internet. Another distinct feature of Tier 1 states is the high purchasing power of their population, making these countries an especially attractive choice for advertisers. Despite the level of competition here being incredibly high, the local audience is also large and you get the best opportunities when it comes to scaling your campaigns.

Tier 1 countries primarily include the US, UK, Germany, France – so basically, it’s predominantly made up of Western Europe and North America.

Tier 2

Countries in this group have an average level of income and are overall economically stable. A distinctive feature of Tier 2 states is a large population count and, as a result, a potential audience for advertising with wide coverage. These countries present excellent opportunities for growing your ad campaigns and affiliate marketing in general. They also have an average level of competition and affordable prices.

The most promising and profitable Tier 2 countries for affiliate marketers are Brazil, India, China, Japan, Türkiye and others.

Tier 3

This category encompasses low-income, underdeveloped nations with limited Internet access and unstable economies. In Tier 3 countries, a distinct characteristic is the low purchasing power of its population, which results in limited advertising opportunities. However, despite these challenges, Tier 3 regions can be intriguing for affiliate marketers working with specific offers and verticals. The primary advantage of Tier 3 countries lies in their low level of competition and a relatively sizable audience.

This category is predominantly filled with African, South American and Asian countries (the ones that aren’t classified as TIer 2).

Tier 4

Some Tier classification systems also include the concept of Tier 4 countries – and these aren’t just places where people have little money to spend. Instead, these are states with 0 prospects for affiliate marketers: the political scene is volatile and unpredictable, soaring inflation and an almost total absence of ad hannels. It’s best to just immediately cross these GEOs off your list since there’s no way to turn a profit here.

Tier 4 includes Equatorial Guinea, Haiti, Iran, Afghanistan, Cuba, Sudan, North Korea, Syria, Togo, Chad.

Reviewing payouts in different Tiers

Countries from different Tiers may have significantly varying payouts, the exact size of which depends on a set of factors like competition in the traffic sector, how much money the population is willing to spend and the availability of certain markets.

Tier 1 payouts

​​Tier 1 countries command the highest payouts due to the value they offer to advertisers. The population of these states are generally the most financially stable audience, who can afford high-end casinos. They consistently make substantial deposits and are eager to gamble a lot longer than others. Additionally, the highest quality traffic originates from Tier 1 countries, with notable examples like the USA, UK, Germany, France, Japan, and others. Payouts in Tier 1 countries can range from approximately $0.50 to $2.00 or even higher per click or app install.

Tier 2 payouts

Tier 2 payouts are a bit more easy to secure and in general – more attractive for affiliates. Players from these countries have average income levels and access to crucial tech. Yet the expenses you’re forced to bear when attractive Tier 2 traffic can be lower than doing the same for Tier 1, which might be a selling point to certain webmasters. The bulk of the lucrative offer stems from Brazil, China, India and Mexico, where the CPC or app installs range between $0.15 до $0.75.

Tier 3 payouts

Tier 3 countries typically offer the lowest payouts, yet they can prove to be highly profitable when working with specific verticals. Acquiring traffic and paying for clicks in Tier 2 and 3 countries doesn’t require you to have a massive budget, making these options ideal for novice affiliate marketers who may lack extensive experience or funding for promoting or testing their campaigns. In countries like Nigeria, Bangladesh, Kenya, and Uganda, payouts can range from as little as $0.01 to $0.20 per click or install.

Customarily, experienced affiliates go hunting for Tier 1 traffic, with webmasters that still lack experience for that big a game launching their first comparatively smaller campaigns in Tier 2 and 3 countries. But keep in mind that all above-mentioned figures are approximate ones and can vary depending on the specific details of the ad campaign, advertiser and platform you’re engaging in affiliate marketing on.

Which Tiers best suit gambling and which – betting?

Essentially, all Tiers are suitable for promoting betting and gambling offers – it’s just that each one has multiple nuances when it comes to picking a promotion strategy. Gambling offers are traditionally more popular in Tier 1 and 2, since people have more free money here. For example, some Tier 1 countries like the UK or Germany are definitely some of the best for gambling because there’s both a noticeable demand for the latter and a developed infrastructure to tailor to it. Betting is more prevalent in Tier 2 and 3 states like Spain, Singapore and Brazil, since sports bets are especially popular here.

Still, to properly pick out a Tier to promote gambling/betting offers you need to pay attention to: 

  • Your own affiliate marketing experience: the best places for beginners to start their affiliate marketing journey are Tier 2 and 3 countries.
  • Ad budgets: Tier 1 forces you to spend a pretty penny on ads and avoiding going into the red isn’t as easy as it might seem.
  • Offer features: it’s always a good idea to first get an idea of how popular the goods or service you intend to promote are in the selected countries. 
  • Major sporting events (for the betting vertical): for example, if the country is hosting a large-scale sport championship or the Olympics, go ahead and launch campaigns there.
  • Legal matters: in certain countries, the activities of casinos or bookmakers are subject to strict regulations or are even entirely prohibited by law. It is of utmost importance to thoroughly research and understand the local legal landscape in advance. In cases where gambling is restricted, you may either choose not to drive traffic from these countries at all or consider utilizing VPNs and proxies for assistance.


There’s no denying that Tier 1, 2 and 3 countries all boast different levels of development and economic prowess; at the same time, the more feeble economic situation in Tier 2 and 3 states may entail certain benefits for affiliates.

When designing your affiliate marketing strategy, make sure you consider all the factors at play – not just the segmentation of each individual Tier and their payouts, but also the cultural and legal features of the countries you choose to work with. Understanding these differences will help you develop an approach to promoting your ad campaigns, as well as to estimate traffic-related expenses and profits. The main thing is to always keep your finger on the pulse, be ready to deal with new conditions and constantly optimize your campaigns.

Discover all the Tiers for yourself and gain all sorts of experience! May you be able to score the highest possible conversion rates! Looking for converting offers? Register in Afstream – an affiliate network with top offers for emerging markets.