One of the main struggles of affiliate program owners is to increase affiliates’ performance and make this marketing channel their best source of sales. That’s why I’m going to show you ten proven tips to grow your affiliate program and make it even more profitable.
Table of Contents
- 1 1. Promote your affiliate program everywhere
- 2 2. Choose the right affiliates
- 3 3. Choose the Right Affiliate Network
- 4 4. Study What Your Competitors Are Doing
- 5 5. Attend Affiliate Conferences to Make More Connections
- 6 6. Attract Sales with Discount Coupons
- 7 7. Get Promotions to Affiliates Well In Advance
- 8 8. Maintain Constant Communication with Affiliates
- 9 9. Follow Up with Poor Performers
- 10 10. Reward Your Top Performing Affiliates
- 11 11. Optimize Your Product Pages for Conversions
- 12 Conclusion on Growing your Affiliate Program
1. Promote your affiliate program everywhere
One of the biggest mistakes I’ve seen constantly in the affiliate world is that businesses do affiliate program promotions in sprints. Once they get a healthy amount of affiliates, they slow the promotion of their affiliate program.
But in the affiliate marketing world, affiliates leave or go into exclusive contracts with brands and stop promoting other companies daily. Or their traffic sources get depleted, so their performance is going down.
On a positive note, new affiliates come into the game and look for quality affiliate programs to send their traffic to.
If you want to grow your affiliate program, you can’t stop promoting it and onboarding new affiliates.
2. Choose the right affiliates
Choosing the right affiliates is paramount to your campaign’s success. The best affiliate partners will have an engaged audience aligned with your target market. They’ll have authority and credibility amongst their followers, so their recommendations are trusted.
Looking for these characteristics in the affiliates you recruit will increase the success of any activities you do with them. It’ll allow you to target those most likely to purchase your product or service and maximize sales conversions.
3. Choose the Right Affiliate Network
There’s a wide range of affiliate networks to choose from, and it’s easy to become overwhelmed by the options. Affiliate networks have varying program features, support tools, and levels of customer service. They tend to specialize in different industry niches and retail sectors, so it’s essential to find one that fits your business.
Their set-up fees and ongoing costs can also be dramatically different, so it’s vital to do your research before committing. Choosing the right affiliate network will save time and money over the long term and ensure that it meets all of your program management requirements.
If you prefer to launch an independent affiliate program and not join an affiliate network, then you should ensure you choose an affiliate program software that has all the features you require. If you own a WordPress website, check our recommended list of affiliate plugins for WordPress and WooCommerce.
4. Study What Your Competitors Are Doing
When building an affiliate program from scratch, it’s good to look at what your competitors are doing, especially the established players. That’s because they’ve tested many things until they found what works for them. So it’s wise to learn from their experience and try to do better.
Put your spy clothes on and look for the following information:
- How are they incentivizing their affiliates, and what kind of commission are they offering?
- Are they limiting certain activities, such as bidding on branded keywords?
- How long is their cookie duration, and what creative banners or deep links do they offer?
By studying your competitors, you can learn from their experiences and mistakes, allowing you to leapfrog their efforts. Understanding how they work with affiliates enables you to build a more effective program, so publishers are inclined to promote your brand over theirs.
So if you want to grow your affiliate program, you can’t ignore what your competitors are doing.
5. Attend Affiliate Conferences to Make More Connections
Relationships are at the heart of affiliate marketing so take every opportunity to meet people. Attending face-to-face meetings at affiliate conferences lets you make more connections and expand your program’s network.
The more people promote your brand, the greater the traffic volume they’ll drive to your website. Meeting in person also allows you to strike better deals with your partners.
Having discussions and learning more about their needs will enable you to create win-win offers that drive results for all parties.
Read more: Affiliate Marketing Conferences
6. Attract Sales with Discount Coupons
Being proactive with affiliate promotions will help to turbo-boost your sales results. Offering coupons, discounts, and deals that deliver additional value to customers allows affiliates to create a compelling offer, increasing clickthroughs and conversions.
If your margins allow, limited-time price discounts are another appealing way to boost sales volume.
Creating unique coupons or discount codes makes it easy to attribute sales to specific affiliates or campaigns. They can also help tip people over the edge when purchasing, leading to more significant revenue overall.
Planning these coupon deals or discounts using a promotion calendar will help you stay organized and avoid overlap.
7. Get Promotions to Affiliates Well In Advance
Whatever types of promotions you run, it’s crucial to plan them well in advance and give your affiliates plenty of notice. They need time to schedule blog posts or videos as part of their marketing plan and create high-quality content to promote.
Not giving affiliates enough warning is one of the biggest mistakes we see affiliate managers make. That means that very few publishers have time to support promotions well. Nothing infuriates more affiliates than not having enough time to prepare and test the campaigns. Well, maybe not getting paid can infuriate them, but this is out of the discussion if you’re a serious affiliate manager and don’t want to ruin your affiliate program.
By planning and getting promotions to them well in advance, you’ll see greater uptake from affiliates and better sales results.
8. Maintain Constant Communication with Affiliates
Communication with affiliates is one of the critical factors in a successful affiliate manager-marketer relationship. Keeping your affiliates updated helps both sides work together effectively and always know what’s happening.
Whether it’s a pricing promotion or a new product launch, they’ll be better able to support your marketing goals if they’re aware of opportunities.
Many affiliate network platforms allow you to send email campaigns to affiliates making external communication easy. But don’t forget to have a dedicated email address they can contact and ensure that the mailbox is monitored regularly. This facilitates two-way communication and leads to a productive working partnership.
Besides, that would help if you offer instant messaging communication through Whatsapp, Skype, or Slack. Affiliates can be pretty impatient when they have issues, and helping them solve them will mean more success and, ultimately, more sales for you.
9. Follow Up with Poor Performers
With any affiliate program, you’ll have high performers and poor ones. Supporting the A-players is fundamental to a program’s success. However, ignoring the poor ones means losing business. Every affiliate started from scratch initially, but some become highly successful ones.
Follow up with them monthly to find out where the problems are and how you can help to resolve them. This will help boost the performance of your program overall and drive even better results for the business.
10. Reward Your Top Performing Affiliates
Motivating your top-performing affiliates to work even more challenging is also ways. Rewarding them with extra commissions, bonuses, or freebies are all excellent ways to encourage them even more.
You can set targets to hit and give them additional rewards for achieving them. Doing this with your top 10-20 affiliates can increase referral traffic and sales.
You can also introduce an element of competition between affiliates so that they strive to outdo each other. This will ensure that you’re getting the best possible results from the affiliates you already have.
11. Optimize Your Product Pages for Conversions
Don’t be fooled by the fact that this is last on the list – it’s one of the most critical elements. Optimizing your product pages for conversions is vital to the success of any marketing campaign.
You’ll leave money on the table if your pages aren’t optimized. And your affiliates will lose sales which they will hate, and at some point may decide to promote other affiliate programs. Maybe some of your competitors.
Potential customers will get there but won’t follow through with the purchase, meaning you lose them at the last hurdle.
You have complete control over your website pages, so ensure they perform to their highest potential. Optimize your images, product descriptions, and checkout process to ensure there aren’t any barriers.
Remember to ensure your site works smoothly on mobile devices since most visits are now made this way.
- How to Create a High Converting Landing Page
- 8 Best Practices to Design a Converting E-Commerce Product Page
- How The Placement Of CTA Buttons Can Increase Your Conversions
- How To Drive More Conversions With Exit-Intent Popups
Conclusion on Growing your Affiliate Program
Congrats on making it to the bottom of the article. Now you know 11 proven ways to grow and improve the performance of your affiliate program. To recap them:
11 ways to grow your affiliate program
- Promote your affiliate program everywhere and onboard the best affiliates to improve profitability.
- Check your affiliates to ensure they understand your promotion rules and do not engage in fraudulent activity.
- Choose the affiliate network that best fits your needs and promotion conditions and has enough affiliates in your niche.
- Please list your competitors’ affiliate programs and study them to find out what they are doing best.
- Get in touch with partners and affiliate marketers and tell them about your business and the opportunities.
- Consider using discounts and coupons, especially during sale periods like BlackFriday, CyberMonday, Christmas, etc.
- Create a promotion calendar and inform the affiliates about the campaign you intend to run long in advance.
- Send regular notifications to your affiliates, maintaining constant communication.
- Get in touch with your poor performers and tip them on what they can do to improve their results.
- Find out-of-the-box methods to motivate your top affiliates to increase their performance.
- Optimizing your website continues to improve conversions and user experience.
Now the floor is yours. Which one worked well for you? Which one it’s new for you, and do you plan to implement it? Share your thoughts with the community in the comments form below.