If you’ve created and launched a product or you have an online store, you probably need traffic. Even if you do all the heavy lifting yourself by using a combination of SEO, email marketing, and paid ads, you’ll still be scratching the surface when it comes to marketing your products/services.
You NEED an affiliate program
1. This alone should be enough!
Imagine having your very own team of salespeople raving about your products all over the internet… Sounds great, doesn’t it?
Of course, it does. Having an affiliate program can truly skyrocket your sales once you get the competent affiliates on board. You’ll have an army of salespeople helping you to get sales.
This obvious benefit alone should be enough to convince you to set up an affiliate program for your products/store. You’d be leaving money on the table if you didn’t… and setting up an affiliate program is really not as difficult as you think.
These days, it’s easy to set up an affiliate program with software such as iDevAffiliate or AffiliateWP. Just install the plugin and you’ll be good to go within a few minutes.
2. How it works
The process is mostly automated. An interested affiliate will sign up to your affiliate program either by invitation or they may find you online. You can then decide if you wish to manually approve them (recommended) or if they’re automatically approved by the system.
They’ll get an affiliate link which they can use in their promotions, and this link will cookie their potential customers.
Any sales generated by them will be reflected on their dashboard (and yours) and you can send them their payouts weekly or monthly (or at intervals you choose).
With the software mentioned above, affiliate management and tracking are a breeze. Thanks to their intuitive interfaces which keep things simple.
6 More Benefits of Having an Affiliate Program
1. More targeted traffic
Besides boosting your sales, an affiliate program will also get you more targeted traffic. Your affiliates may have niche sites and their own audience who will be looking for just the type of products/services you’re offering.
They’ll gladly buy your products if your sales copy is good – and if your site looks reputable.
Your conversions will not only be higher, but this method of marketing is more effective than paid ads which is basically ‘spraying, praying, and paying’ until you have enough data to narrow down your winning ads.
Using affiliates is definitely an effective way to get sales quickly. That said, many marketing articles will tell you that using affiliates is the cheapest way to get sales, since you won’t be spending on advertising, etc.
However, we believe that it’s the most expensive way to get sales, depending on the commission rates you’re offering.
Digital products on ClickBank offer as high as 50%-75% commission rates per sale. Stores like Walmart offer anywhere from 10%-15% commission, and Amazon offers even lower rates.
It goes without saying that the more attractive your rates are, the more affiliates will want to promote you. This can take quite a hefty chunk out of your profits.
However, affiliates can bring in a deluge of sales that you’d not have gotten on your own. So, it’s worth paying more just to get more sales, even if it means settling for less profit per sale.
Overall, you WILL make more, if you get your numbers right. Just know that it’s NOT the cheapest way to get sales.
2. Increased brand awareness
Having affiliates praising your products from the digital rooftops of their web properties is the online version of marketing via ‘word-of-mouth’.
And it’s one of the best ways to increase brand awareness and get your products noticed by more people than you’ll ever be able to reach on your own.
Getting others to sing praises about your brand will be far more effective than blowing your own horn with hyped-up sales copy.
3. SEO benefits
Have you ever noticed that Amazon products rank for many search terms?
One of the reasons for this is the thousands of affiliates who are linking back to the Amazon website/products. This massive number of backlinks pointing to Amazon helps them rank quickly and easily in the search engine results.
Similarly, having affiliates linking back to your site will be a favorable sign to the almighty eye of Google – which will deem your site worthy of a higher position in the search engines (because of the backlinks pointing to it).
So, affiliates may be able to indirectly help you with your search engine optimization efforts.
4. Form mutually beneficial partnerships
Some of your affiliates may have their own products and online stores. You could work out reciprocal mailings with them. By promoting each other, both parties will benefit.
You might even be able to do a joint venture with some affiliates and launch products with them. The possibilities are endless – and having an affiliate program will open up these opportunities to you.
5. Low risk
With affiliates, you only pay when they make a sale. This is a performance-based reward system that has very little risk for you. Marketers with on a tight budget will do better with affiliates.
Paid advertising is effective, but risky. Not to mention the learning curve where you’ll be spending money on ads until you can find a few winning ones that yield profit.
Many beginner marketers will not be able to stomach this risk… and will be better off using affiliate traffic instead.
6. Full flexibility
As the vendor, you’ll get to decide the commission rates, whom to accept as affiliates, which products they can promote and so on. There’s a lot of flexibility here and you call the shots.
Do note that with great power comes great responsibility. Ensure that your affiliates are paid on time, every time – and be fair with your commission rates so that their efforts are worth their time.
Never try to short-change your affiliates. It’s not good form and word will get around.
By now, you’ll realize that setting up an affiliate program is a necessity if you wish to take your online business to the next level. There’s so much to gain with very few downsides.
Use reliable affiliate software such as iDevAffiliate or AffiliateWP and you’ll be up and running in no time at all.
Then go out there and proactively recruit affiliates and treat them well. Reward the better-performing ones with extra perks and always be transparent with them.
If you have the right attitude and attractive remuneration rates, your affiliates will respect you and go out of their way to promote you. It’s a win-win situation for all involved.
From here on, you can scale up and expand your online business exponentially. It doesn’t get better than that.