robdwoods - 10:11 pm on Apr 28, 2011 (gmt 0)
I think I'm safe in saying, if you take the payment on your site, and do the customer service, you'll likely be seen as an e-commerce site regardless of who fulfills the order. If you send users to another domain and the payment happens there, you're an affiliate. Commission rates have nothing to do with it nor do annual sales.
I see afflilates as coffee table operations playing the adwords arbitrage game to make a little extra income.
That's simply an erroneous perception of what an affiliate is. I manage sites that have staff, with related expenses, and generate 7 figure revenues, but they are still very traditional affiliate sites and likely seen as such by the engines.