The Bottom Line on Affiliate Marketing

Affiliate marketing can be a valuable channel for your ecommerce site. You create additional reach and affiliate orders through affiliates. Best of all, you only pay for results. No sales or leads? Then no payment. So performance-based marketing is pure and simple. But how do you get off to a good start? What is involved in setting up an affiliate campaign? In this article, ten tips to get you off to a flying start.

Is affiliate marketing suitable for your company?

The first question you should ask yourself is how suitable it is for your business if you are considering starting with affiliate marketing. Do you have a product or service that can be promoted by third parties? Is there enough margin on your product to hand over several affiliates? If not, affiliate marketing makes little sense. Affiliates want proper compensation for their efforts. They mainly look at the eCPC: effective cost per click. In other words, how much do they earn from each visitor they forward to your site?

First, study affiliate marketing to determine whether it suits your (organization). Ask affiliate networks if they run campaigns in your industry and which competitors are already active with affiliate marketing. There are good affiliates for almost every industry and every product.

Of course, everything starts with clear objectives. Formulate in advance what you want to achieve with affiliate marketing, for example, generate 10 percent extra sales or receive 5,000 leads annually.

The right know-how and sufficient time

Is there internal knowledge of performance marketing in general and affiliate marketing in particular? Experience and time are two things you cannot have enough. Managing your affiliate campaigns takes at least a few hours a week. For more substantial companies, this can amount to several FTEs. If you don’t have time, you can save yourself a disappointment. Active management of your campaigns is a prerequisite for success. Internally no time and knowledge; consider hiring an agency or self-employed person who will take your work off your hands. This way you can save a lot of time. However, you still have to manage your desk.

Select the correct network

Numerous affiliate networks are active nationally and internationally. Examples include Daisycon, TradeDoubler, Zanox, and FamilyBlend. Each system has its focus. Internationally oriented or on the Dutch market. All consumers or a specific segment. The network that suits you has experience in your industry and enough affiliates to achieve your goals. There is no single best network. Industry, ambitions, and personal click all play a role. Can you go through one door with these people? You will often speak to them. A useful starting point in finding a suitable network is this overview of affiliate networks.

When you visit the websites of different networks, you quickly see which systems are dropped. Talk to two or three networks. Ask for cases, industry experience, forecasts of possible results, etc. Feel free to divide the estimates you get by three so as not to count yourself too precious. Your interlocutors are salespeople, so they also want to talk you in with rosy stories.

Negotiating your contract

Good. You have spoken to multiple affiliate networks. You have a good feeling about one network. You would like to work with them. Then never sign the standard contract they submit to you. The network’s contract proposal is a good starting point for negotiations. I know from experience that everything is negotiable. The fee that the network receives, start-up costs, contract duration, whatever you can think of. The network may not say yes to everything. But what do you have to lose? Now is the time to get as many of your wishes honored as possible. It makes a difference in how big your company is. The more the network can potentially earn from you, the more flexible it will be. If you run a small e-commerce site, there is less in the barrel.

Promotional material, landing pages, and measurement pixel

The contract has been signed, and preparations to go live are in full swing. Your new affiliate network will probably guide you in this. Therefore, here a few points of attention.

Provide sufficient promotional material of good quality. Think of HTML5 banners, email templates, text links, and possibly a product feed. Most affiliate networks also develop banners and email templates. So they can take this off your hands. The advantage is that the systems know what works and what does not work in the affiliate channel. If you have a permanent designer, you can, of course, also put it to work.

With good promotional material, you are not there yet. You also need useful converting landing pages for the affiliate traffic. In general, it is wise not to land that on your homepage. Make one or more landing pages that match your promotional material one by one. This starts with fundamental things: the use of the same photo or image, consistency in colors, fonts, and the like.

Your network will also ask you to install measurement pixels on your website. This allows them to measure, which leads or sales have been made via affiliates.

Go live

Before your campaign goes live, check everything. Is the promotional material in order? 

Are the landing pages working correctly? Does the measuring pixel work? You have agreed on affiliate commissions with the network, so you know what you are paying for leads and sales.

Is everything done? Then it is time to go live. Make sure you are prepared for a (possible) increase in your sales. It is very annoying if there is a huge sales success, and you do not have enough stock or are not logistically intense.

Inform publishers about your campaign

Time to see how it goes. What are the first experiences and results? An obstacle to high growth can be that affiliates do not know that your program exists. So you have to work. Your next promotional campaign is not aimed at consumers but potential affiliates. You can inform affiliates about the existence of your program via the affiliate network.

Different networks offer different options for this. Consider, for example, an emailing to all affiliates affiliated with the network in which you present your program. Or news reports. Networks have different ways of informing affiliates about new advertisers. If you already raise this during the contract negotiations, you may be able to send an advertisement to affiliates for free (or with a discount). Don’t be too hesitant at this stage. Familiarity with your program among affiliates is a precondition for success. After all, they don’t promote you if they don’t know about you.

Place the registration page on your website.

Research by IAB UK shows that many publishers with an affiliate program become known through the advertiser’s website. Your website is an essential source for recruiting affiliates. To create a page’s affiliates’ or ‘partner program’ on your website, make sure it is findable. The network may be able to support you in this.

Be and stay active

If you build it, they will come. This quote from the Field of Dreams movie does not apply to affiliate marketing. There is more to it than setting up a campaign. Successful campaigns are successful because they are actively managed. For example, because promotional material is regularly replaced. Because there are incentives for their affiliates and regular new promotions for consumers. This can be a discount, a gift card, or something else that gives people a reason to buy ‘NOW’ from you.

A / B testing

Bookcases and servers are full of A / B testing. Among others here and here. The secret of successful affiliate marketing? These are the previous ones. 

Finale Wors: Affiliate Marketing is not dead, But yes, the way of doing it really changing by time over & over. So you should also be updated with all latest affiliate marketing tactics. I hope this article helped you, if yes then make sure to comment your experience with the article & share with yous friends on social medias.


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here