Is your affiliate program not growing at the rate you had hoped? Or not at all? Are you doing everything you thought you could to grow your program but not succeeding? If you answered yes to any of these questions, then look no further. We’ve outlined some simple steps that will get you on track for growing your affiliate program.
- Audit of creative (text links and banners) – Make sure affiliates have the most current promotional, product, or general text links and banners. If you do not have the most current creative, then add text links that showcase top performing products or a specific category of product.
- Identify the top 10 performers for the program. When was the last time you spoke with them on the phone or via email? The affiliate channel is relationship based, so get to work on getting to know your affiliate partners on a more personal level.
- Identify affiliates that had over 100 clicks last month, but a conversion rate of less than 1%. After you have gathered those affiliates reach out to them and see if they can shed any light as to the low conversion rate.
- Identify affiliates with abnormally high conversation rates, but little traffic and sales. After you have this data you can reach out to these affiliates and ask about additional exposure as you know their audience is high converters.
- Check EPC (earning per click) – Commissions/(clicks/100). You can sometimes check competitor EPC within the network. Using this information, you can determine where you are standing with your competitors and what affiliates are earning per click. EPC is one of the ways affiliates determine whether or not to promote an affiliate program, so it is important to keep this metric in mind.
- Check GA or internal reporting. Is the affiliate channel on par with other channels? If not, look into why that is. Are the other channels given more promotions, discounts or offers than the affiliate channel or vice versa? Do you notice a decrease in conversion rate through the affiliate channel vs. other digital channels? If so, this may be a reason why your program is not growing.
- Recruitment plan – outline a plan for gathering new affiliates to join your affiliate program. This plan can include the types of affiliates you would like to have joined to your program, the incentives you can give them, timeframes on when you will follow-up, and email templates for each type of affiliate category. For further help with this step you can read this article on “The Perfect Affiliate Recruitment Email.” A thorough understanding of your consumer demographics will help in identifying which affiliates to partner with.
- Commission increase campaigns for placements with coupon affiliates or increased cash back with loyalty affiliates. Sometimes affiliates will give category, homepage, social posts for commission increases. On the other hand, loyalty affiliates will give more cash back to the customers which may help influence customers purchasing with your brand over competitors.
- Exclusive offers – leverage exclusive offers with affiliates who may give placements for these and customers may purchase from your brand knowing they are receiving a special discount.
- Budget for paid placements – sometimes affiliates will only give additional exposure (homepage, newsletters/emails, category, social posts) for flat fee placements. It’s a good idea to do your homework and understand the traffic and conversion rate of the page of the paid placement. It is also a good idea to discuss a potential make good IF the placement doesn’t perform well before money has been paid.
- Incentive campaigns – these campaigns are good ways of incentivizing the affiliates to drive more traffic for your program. They can be free product, higher commissions, bonus based with thresholds that the affiliates have to reach.
- Product for bloggers – providing product to working with bloggers can be a great way to build unique content while creating brand awareness at a relatively low cost. When working with bloggers if you can give them product to review, they can do that review post and add in affiliate tracking links.
- Make sure datafeed is currently working. There are multiple ways affiliates use the datafeed to drive revenue and if they do not have the most up-to-date one, they may be missing sales and you will be missing revenue.
- TM+ campaign – this allows affiliates to bid on “Trademark + promotional terms” and can help clean up the search space and add additional revenue to the program. A strategic approach working closely with 1 or 2 paid search affiliates to bid on your brand you can leverage additional placements. Learn more about TM+ in this article “Why You NEED Affiliates Bidding on TM+”
These simple steps will go a long way in growing your affiliate program. If you need help growing your affiliate program, let us know. Contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org and we can do a free affiliate program audit to identify the areas you need help with.