Affiliate marketing has been in existence for a long time and is growing stronger each year. Around 80% of brands utilise this model to attract a new audience, allocating only 10% of their budget to it. Affiliate marketing is a way to inform the audience about one’s company and stimulate sales with minimal risks.
With the development of the internet, the popularity of affiliate marketing and affiliate programs is increasing. However, not all of them are suitable for beginners, while others are not recommended for experienced participants in the process. In this article, we will discuss the types of affiliate programs, how to choose the right program, and promote CPA network commodities.
What are affiliate programs and how do they work?
An affiliate program is a collaboration between an affiliate and a company that aims to attract customers. Within the framework of an affiliate program, the affiliate promotes the company’s products and receives compensation for successful transactions. The promotion of goods and services can be done through various means, such as their own website, social media pages, blogs, or YouTube channels. The key is to create high-quality and appealing content, incorporating a unique affiliate link. Every time customers place orders with the company, the affiliate receives compensation in the form of a percentage of the transaction or a fixed payout amount. Affiliate marketing involves the collaboration of three parties: the affiliate, the advertising company, and the affiliate network.
An affiliate is an individual who advertises a product and attracts customers through their blog and advertisements. The affiliate’s goal is to motivate users to purchase the desired product or perform other targeted actions, such as downloading an application, registering, or requesting a callback. Additionally, affiliates are responsible for finding suitable offers, identifying the target audience and competitors, developing marketing materials, and optimising advertising campaigns.
The advertiser is a company or brand that has a product to promote. The advertiser seeks partnerships with affiliates who will sell their products. In addition to providing the object for promotion, the advertiser sets a budget for promotion and bears the risks associated with the affiliates’ work. Affiliate marketing enhances brand recognition, boosts sales, and increases profits for the advertiser.
The third link in the affiliate marketing chain is the affiliate network, which provides a commodity affiliate program and acts as an intermediary between the advertiser and the affiliate. An affiliate program is mutually beneficial for both parties: it helps the advertiser attract more customers and generate sales, while providing the affiliate with additional income for promotion. Affiliate programs are highly popular in online businesses, e-commerce, web development, marketing, and offer companies an opportunity to expand their business.
Types of affiliate programs
There are various types of affiliate programs that differ in terms of what the affiliate gets paid for: cost-per-click, cost-per-sale, cost-per-action, cost-per-lead, and cost-per-impression. Let us consider the most common ones.
* Cost-per-click programs involve the advertiser paying the affiliate for each click a customer makes on their website. In other words, payment is made for every click on the advertising announcement. The advantage of this model is its transparency – the source of traffic can always be tracked using special tools. It is suitable for companies that want to increase brand awareness by displaying ads to a maximum number of users. However, this model will not be effective for online stores since a click on an ad does not guarantee that the user will make a purchase.
* Cost-per-lead programs. A lead is a potential consumer who has shown interest in a product but has not yet made a purchase. With cost-per-lead, the affiliate earns money each time they attract potential customers for the business. Certain criteria are used to determine the attracted lead, such as subscribing to a newsletter, registering for a demo version, making a deposit, completing a survey, and similar actions specified by the company. CPA affiliate programs are the most popular because they help save the budget. After all, users who have performed important actions for the advertiser are the ones who get paid.
* Cost-per-sale programs where the affiliate receives commissions for each purchase made by the customer. Through the affiliate’s referral link, the customer is redirected and purchases the advertised product or service. The affiliate network and the advertiser track whose sale it was and pay the corresponding affiliate a reward. This form is suitable for gambling, physical goods online stores, and virtual products. Most commonly, the reward is calculated as a percentage of the product’s cost.
How to choose the right affiliate program
- Examine the seller and the product. Successful cooperation begins with finding an advertiser and selecting the right offer. Find information about the selling company online, including its reputation, financial position, and market experience. Make sure to read reviews from other affiliates. Regarding the offer, pay attention to the variety and seasonality of the offerings. Good affiliate programs usually have around 100-200 offers across different verticals. Choose a product that matches your audience or is closest to it.
- Evaluate the commission rate. It can be a percentage of the sales amount or a fixed payment. Find out what you will receive a commission for: sales, clicks, orders. Choose an affiliate program with decent rewards, but do not be swayed solely by large sums. Often, behind huge commissions, there is high competition. Select an affiliate program that suits you optimally, where you feel comfortable working rather than chasing after big money.
- Familiarise yourself with the program’s terms and conditions. Pay attention to the requirements the affiliate program has for affiliates. Clarify the list of tools provided for promoting the product. For example, does the affiliate program provide banners? How will you track statistics and the results of your work?
The advantages of affiliate programs lie in the minimum required investment and the ability to build a profitable strategy. However, there are currently many low-quality affiliate networks, so it is important to approach the selection process responsibly.
How to promote affiliate products
Affiliate programs for affiliates are a great way to earn and establish passive income. The most important thing is to choose the right intermediary and product that you will enjoy promoting. Now let us talk about marketing strategies for promotion.
- Content marketing is the most effective way to attract customers. The essence is to create attractive and high-quality content on your blog or website, share your opinions, and present compelling facts in favour of the product. This strategy helps customers understand all the advantages of the product, which increases the likelihood of a positive transaction.
- Social media marketing. Nowadays, a lot of people spend their free time on platforms like Instagram, Facebook, YouTube, and other social networks. This can be cleverly adapted for promoting goods and services. Create profiles on platforms where your target audience is concentrated. Publish posts with useful information about products or services. To attract more users, use concise hashtags.
- Email marketing. Create a separate product landing page to collect contact information from your subscribers. Once you have a list of email addresses, regularly send out emails with information about new promotions, offers, or product reviews. However, do not overdo it, or else the user will definitely reject your offer.
Tools for affiliate marketers
For efficient work and process tracking, special tools are required. Despite the fact that commodity affiliate programs offer some programs, we have decided to provide a list of popular tools for link shortening, traffic tracking, and analytics.
Bitly is a popular tool for link shortening. With its help, you can not only make long URLs shorter but also track link clicks and analyse traffic data. According to the service’s data, users click on over 200 million links shortened with Bitly daily.
Google Analytics is a tool for web traffic analysis. With it, you can gather information from websites, track and analyse data about its visitors, traffic sources, and other metrics that are valuable for affiliates.
Hotjar is also an analysis tool, but for user behaviour on a website. With Hotjar, you can record user sessions, conduct surveys, analyse heatmaps to gain insights into user behaviour, and optimize advertising processes based on that.
Another tool for traffic tracking and analytics is LinkTrackr. It includes link cloaking, conversion tracking, redirect management features, and provides detailed link performance reports. LinkTrackr also offers split testing, allowing you to analyse the effectiveness of an advertising campaign.
Tapfiliate is a useful tool for advertisers to create custom links for affiliates, track conversions and commission payments, provide detailed reports and analytics. With Tapfiliate, you can add marketing assets to your platform to reflect your own brand and create white-labelled affiliate pages.
Another software for managing affiliate programs is Post Affiliate. The program offers a wide range of features, including link creation and management, conversion tracking, commission setup, and detailed reporting. Post Affiliate helps organise all aspects of your affiliate programs by tracking your affiliate referrals, clicks, commissions, and payment records.
Working with affiliate programs is an effective way to increase your income without the need to create your own products or services. However, to maximise the benefits of this work, it is necessary to choose the right affiliate network and offers, as well as select appropriate tools. The main thing is to discuss all the collaboration conditions in advance and constantly monitor the statistics of advertising campaigns. After all, the size of your earnings depends on it.