Case Studies


Finding DTC success with affiliate

The Results

Our objective was to hit ambitious growth targets in just six months as Ancestry migrated its programs to Rakuten Advertising. We exceeded all goals and showcased that affiliate marketing is an especially reliable channel for the Ancestry team to achieve success in the highly competitive DTC space. In only 6 months, we achieved:


increase in DNA Kits sold


increase over our sales target for the affiliate channel


increase in memberships sold


increase in ROAS

About the Brand

Ancestry is the global leader in family history and genetic testing, empowering journeys of personal discovery to enrich lives. With their unparalleled collection of more than 40 billion records, over 3 million subscribers, and over 23 million people in our growing DNA network, customers can discover their family stories and gain a new level of understanding about their lives.

The Story

For 2023, we helped Ancestry expand beyond its traditional customer base to boost LTV and demonstrate the unique power of the affiliate channel for meeting critical brand strategic challenges. The DTC brand was familiar with the affiliate space, but we intended to use every tool in our toolbox to prove to Ancestry that affiliate could be the differentiator in their marketing mix.

The Rakuten Advertising Solution

To boost Ancestry’s DTC presence and improve the channel’s value, we leveraged all available Rakuten Advertising tools, including targeting, personalization, recruitment, commissioning, new partnership models, and on- and off-site technology.

The following were the most impactful in the first 6 months of our partnership:


Enhancing one-to-one personalization at scale with Audience Engine, driving 2x-3x sales increases from our largest partner.


Leveraging our benchmarking tool to identify new content partnerships and drive them to scale more quickly than expected.

Insight and Optimization

Optimizing performance with execution matrix and industry benchmarks, identifying new publishers that drove revenue and boosting ROAS.

We have been extremely impressed with the Rakuten Advertising team and platform capabilities since migrating in early 2023. In just 6 months, our program has grown exponentially, beyond what we thought possible with affiliate. Our success is a testament to our dedicated Rakuten Advertising team and the platform’s innovative technology.

Lindsay Durkin
Senior Marketing Manager,

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