Simply launching an affiliate program in house or on an affiliate network isn’t going to deliver much value for your company, you have get proactive with it to grow your affiliate channel as source of new customers and incremental revenue. Otherwise, the vast majority of your affiliates will be coupon websites that are simply capitalizing on your website’s traffic when people go looking for a coupon code prior to purchase, which can actual take money away from your bottom line if you pay them too much. The way to really go about it is to recruit 100’s if not 1000’s of niche websites as affiliates either through the affiliate networks or by contacting relevant websites, then you will be getting new customers and building incremental revenue through your affiliate channel, which is actually the beauty of affiliate marketing.
1. Boost Website Conversion Rate – This applies to all affiliate merchants, but particularly those that are serious about increasing their affiliate channel enough to focus on improving website conversions. Most companies don’t spend nearly enough time working on improving website usability and conversion rates. They take it for granted that their website visitors will be impressed enough or desperate enough to just make a purchase. But the fact of the matter is that website visitors need to be impressed and convinced to make a purchase by the way your site communicates it’s worthy of buying from. Where am I going with this you ask? Just impressing upon you the fact that capitalizing on the traffic your website is receiving is both beneficial to your affiliates as well as your own internal online marketing campaigns. At the end of the day, it’s about how well the traffic your website is receiving is converting into buyers or leads. So assuming you have a well converting website, you have given your company a very good chance to successfully growing a large and productive affiliate program. We can work with your company to increase your overall conversion rate by implementing several strategies that achieve this.
2. Building Affiliate Relationships – Affiliate marketers are very concerned with their electronic tracking and also how well you convert as a merchant, and rightfully so. Affiliates seek to generate traffic to merchants with good conversion rates and good payouts so they can make money from it. With good reason of course. Catering to your affiliates by constantly providing ideas, tools, and strategies with which to produce sales is called for in order enable as many affiliates as possible to produce. Over the years affiliate marketing has grown tremendously and there are literally 10’s of thousands of affiliates that you can get active in your affiliate program. You should listen to your affiliates intently when they give you feedback and you should let them know that you are there to answer any potential questions they may have. Offer to have a phone call with your affiliates and build the relationship if you want them to do anything for you.
3. Affiliate Sales Promotions – Running sales promotions with your affiliates is a great ways to motivate more of your affiliates to activate. But this alone won’t cinch it for you, you have to really commit to working with your affiliates in order to get them to produce. Hours and hours on the phone with affiliates is a great strategy to get them liking your company and promoting your “offers.” Which is why more companies are turning to outsourced affiliate management companies like ours. All we do is work with affiliates and bring more affiliates into the affiliate programs we manage. Working with affiliates should be a major focus of your online marketing department. Thinking of creative and effective ways to communicate with your affiliates is a great method of motivating more people to get active. Your affiliate program should be a source of excitement for your company as you get more people involved and more revenue is coming in. Rewarding affiliates for their efforts is a must! Let your affiliates know you care. Send them frequent sales and promotions to market on their sites and on social networks. Stay in their consciousness without being annoying.
4. Doing the Work for Your Affiliates – This might be controversial, but I know it works. Let’s say you have a 1000 affiliate marketers signed up to marketing your products or services. Only a fraction will ever put up your banner ads, and a fraction will do a blog post about your company. Now image if you sent an email out to all of them offering to write a unique company description or write-up they can post on their website or blog. Many will respond and you will get more original content posted about your company on a host of diverse, relevant affiliate websites. This is a proven effective way to increase production, participation, traffic, and sales. You have to write the content or outsource it, but over time it will pay off and have a return on investment.
5. Send Compelling Affiliate Newsletters – most companies send poorly designed, poorly written affiliate newsletters that do little to nothing to engage affiliates and inspire them to become active in the program. One of the keys to increasing participation in your affiliate program is to send gorgeous HTML newsletters that speak to your affiliates instead of at them. Make every affiliate feel like they are your most important concern. Offer to help them with their website and grow their traffic. Offer to bonus them if they become active and start producing sales. Since affiliates get tons of newsletters every month, you have to really set yourself apart from the other companies doing a lame job of it. Make sure to have a really great subject line that clearly states what is in the newsletter is about and make sure to be super-friendly and offer to help them out any way you can. List your phone number in the newsletter and have someone answering the calls that have a clue about online marketing and can actually help. Encourage your affiliates to call you and make that a priority. Speaking to affiliates on the phone should be one of the primary tasks of every affiliate manager.
I hope these tips helped! If you would like to discuss how to improve your affiliate channel and grow it exponentially, please contact us immediately. We would love to work with you! 🙂