How to Create an Effective Affiliate Program for Your Membership Site

While membership sites often grow into a lucrative source of income, you may find that yours has gotten off to a slow start. This can be frustrating – especially considering the time and effort you’ve put in – but it’s not impossible to fix.

In short, creating an affiliate program may help to speed up your site’s growth. It can encourage interest in your membership site and motivate others to promote it to their own networks. This increased reach and interest can lead to improved conversions and increased memberships.

In this post, we’ll talk about why you should consider creating an affiliate program for your membership site. Then we’ll offer you three tips for creating one, and explain how to implement each tip seamlessly. Let’s get started!

Why You Should Consider Creating an Affiliate Program for Your Membership Site

Affiliate programs exist to promote and sell products or services. In this case, you’ll use one to promote and sell subscriptions to your membership site. Affiliate programs have many potential benefits, including:

  • Expanded brand reach: With dedicated individuals promoting your membership site, your brand (and service offerings) can reach new audiences.
  • Improved subscription sales: The more eyes on your program, the higher your potential sales. A dedicated affiliate program can promote your membership site, and this can result in an income boost.
  • Increased website visibility and brand credibilityThe greater the number of affiliates promoting your program, the more your website visibility and brand credibility can increase.

Fortunately, creating an affiliate program doesn’t have to be difficult. Let’s look at how to create your own and start benefiting.

How to Create an Effective Affiliate Program for Your Membership Site (3 Tips)

These three tips will help you create streamlined management, find great recruits, and see higher conversions for your effective affiliate program. Let’s take a look!

1. Combine Your Membership Site and Affiliate Program Activities

Running a membership site takes time and money, and the same is true for running an affiliate program. To make your job easier, combine your activities. Doing so lets you spend less time managing the details, and more time recruiting quality affiliates. You’ll also ensure that changes in your membership site are communicated to your affiliate site automatically (and vice versa), helping you avoid mistakes due to overlooked information.

With the right tools, combining your site and program isn’t difficult. MemberPress is a membership site management plugin for creating a simple and user-friendly membership site with a variety of add-ons:

The MemberPress home page.

You also get a version of Affiliate Royale, our popular affiliate management plugin, which provides you with an all-in-one solution to create a seamless affiliate program for your membership site.

Of course, there’s more than just the tools you choose – the affiliates you pick are also important. Let’s take a look at that aspect now.

2. Look to Site Members for Potential Affiliate Recruits

If you have enough members (more on this later), you can look to your membership as a bank of potential affiliates. There are numerous benefits to doing this. For a start, affiliates will already be knowledgeable about the program, and you’ll save time on scouting and training, which can be spent working on other aspects of your program.

Affiliates, of course, don’t work for free. To recruit site members you should offer competitive commission rates. Make the offer even more enticing by providing a membership site discount in addition to commission.

If your program is so new that you don’t have many members to recruit, try these two tactics:

  1. Work out partnerships with other membership or affiliate sites. By creating combined offers or discounts, you multiply the benefits for your new affiliates. Partnerships also help you reach a wider network of potential affiliates.
  2. Use guest posting to gain exposure. If you can, include a link to a targeted landing page (see the next tip) as a great way to gain members and affiliate recruits. Even without a landing page link, guest posting will expand your reach and increase site traffic.

Additionally, you can offer a membership discount to site members who may not want to be marketers themselves, but who can recruit some of their friends or family to the program. This will further expand the scope of your recruitment efforts.

3. Build a High-Conversion Landing Page for Affiliate Signups

A landing page is one built with a primary goal in mind. In this case, it’s recruiting affiliates for your new program. Your page has to be more than just a placeholder, though – it needs to engage visitors and encourage signups.

Building a landing page gives your affiliate program a ‘home’ that is easy for others to share. More sharing can lead to additional signups. To build a landing page that converts:

  1. Focus on the benefits of your affiliate program: Highlight your competitive commission rates, membership site discounts (for those interested), and other benefits.
  2. Use a strong Call To Action (CTA): Direct, specific CTAs create a sense of urgency and promote signups.
  3. Use the Affiliate Royale plugin to create a dedicated signup page: Setup is simple, and you can configure the page as you would any other WordPress page (with the addition of a signup form).

Overall, it’s most important to focus on quality. Take the time to build a high-quality landing page for your affiliate program, and you’ll be off to an excellent start!

Conclusion

It can be disheartening when your membership site doesn’t take off immediately. The creation of an affiliate program can help promote interest in your site, expand your reach, and increase conversions.

In this post, we’ve offered you three tips for creating an affiliate program for your membership site. To quickly recap, they are:

  1. Combine your membership site and affiliate program operations.
  2. Look to site members for potential affiliate recruits.
  3. Build a high-conversion landing page for affiliate signups.

Do you have questions about how to start an affiliate program for your membership site? Let us know in the comments section below!

3 Important Search Engine Optimization Techniques for Your Affiliate Site

Search Engine Optimization (SEO) is commonly touted as vital for your website’s success. By increasing your site’s visibility, SEO can boost your site traffic and establish you as an industry authority. However, SEO techniques can seem difficult and complicated, which may prevent you from using them on your website.

In reality, many SEO techniques are easy to use. You just need to know which ones are most effective, and how to use them on your affiliate site. Taking a common sense approach and thinking of your readers first will likely net you the highest gains.

In this post, we’ll discuss the importance of SEO for affiliate websites, before introducing three SEO techniques and teaching you how to use them effectively. Let’s get started!

How Search Engine Optimization Can Benefit Your Affiliate Business

SEO is a discipline used to improve website visibility on Search Engine Results Pages (SERPs). This is particularly valuable for affiliate websites, which need targeted traffic and conversions. SEO can:

  1. Drive targeted traffic. Not all traffic is created equally. You must drive targeted traffic to your website, especially if you wish to increase leads and boost sales.
  2. Build credibility and trust. A website that ranks highly on SERPs will be more trusted, and this will improve your brand’s credibility.
  3. Improve conversions. With the use of certain SEO techniques, your target audience will be able to find you more easily. Improved connections with your target audience means a potential increase in leads and conversions.

SEO requires patience and consistency, but the results are worth the effort. By using the most important SEO techniques, you can maximize those efforts.

3 Important Search Engine Optimization Techniques for Your Affiliate Site

With at least 200 factors involved in SEO ranking, narrowing down the most vital is tough. However, the three below are some of the most important. Let’s take a look!

1. Create Quality, Targeted Content

Quality content with 2 million shares

When your content is high-quality and targeted, you’ll garner more social media shares and boost reader engagement.

In this context, ‘targeted’ simply means creating content for a specific subset of your audience. Doing this will attract more qualified readers and will likely be more effective in converting them to customers. Quality content keeps your site credible and trustworthy (as you’ll be seen as an industry resource).

While there are a number of tips for creating quality, targeted content, these will serve you well:

  • Perform keyword research. Use a mixture of commercial intent keywords (those you intend to monetize) and information keywords to narrow your focus in each piece of content. Incorporate the keywords in a natural way and read your writing aloud. If it sounds contrived, reword it.
  • Make it original. You don’t need to reinvent the wheel, but you do need to avoid copying content. In short, avoid copying ideas without adding your own unique spin. By including your own concepts and connections, readers will find your content more engaging and helpful.
  • Make it readable. There are many well-proven techniques – such as optimizing headlines and strategically structuring your copy  – that makes content highly readable. Scannable content is important, so use headings, bullets, and white space to make your content more engaging.

In short, to serve your readers is to create content that answers their questions and addresses their needs. Making sure you offer quality targeted content is the key.

2. Use On-Page Optimization

A meta description seen on a Search Engine Results Page (SERP)

Meta descriptions are a powerful on-page optimization technique, and one you should use consistently.

On-page optimization is an SEO technique to increase your site’s user-friendliness. A user-friendly site can increase the visit time on your site and boost your conversion rate. On-page optimization also makes it easier for Googlebots to crawl your site.

As with targeted content, there are many on-page optimization techniques, but these three are key:

  1. Add keyword-infused meta descriptions. Meta descriptions are snippets of content viewable in SERPs. Including targeted keywords in them can improve your search engine rankings, making it easier for target readers to find you.
  2. Use short, branded URLs. These help boost your brand, and they can also be shared easily – which can improve your rankings as your reach expands.
  3. Incorporate outbound and on-site links into your content. Both types of links can improve your website’s credibility. In addition, they add depth to your content, increasing its usefulness and quality.

On-page optimization is one of the easier techniques to implement, and doing so will contribute a great deal to boosting your search engine rankings.

3. Increase Backlinks to Your Site

A byline linking to an author's website.

Backlinking to your website (for example, in a byline) will help to boost your search engine ranking.

Simply put, backlinks are links to your website from other sources on the web, and they offer two powerful benefits by passing link juice onto your site, and expanding your site’s reach. More backlinks lead to a wider audience, which offers you more opportunity to attract your target audience.

To build backlinks, there are a number of tips that offer good results quickly, among which are:

  1. Guest post on industry blogs. Seek out high-traffic and relevant blogs in your niche, and aim to write for blogs you would recommend to your own readers.
  2. Get active on niche forums. They can build backlinks, expand your reach, and establish you as a credible industry resource.
  3. Find and fix broken linksRegularly seek out and correct broken links to your site to ensure that backlinks are effective.

Building backlinks is arguably more effort than other SEO techniques. However, it can greatly increase your affiliate site’s reach and influence if you focus on quality backlinks over quantity.

Conclusion

Presenting your affiliate website in the best light builds trust and helps to improve conversions through user-friendliness. Fortunately, you can gain the above benefits (and more) with the right SEO techniques.

In this post, we’ve offered three of the most important search engine optimization techniques. Let’s recap them quickly:

  1. Create quality, targeted content.
  2. Use on-page optimization.
  3. Increase backlinks to your site.

Do you have any questions about how to implement the above techniques on your website? Let us know in the comments section below!

3 Ways a Social Media Presence Can Benefit Your Affiliate Business

When promoting your affiliate business, it’s important to use every channel that can benefit your brand. Many marketers find social media to be time-consuming; they struggle to justify the time and effort required. A strong social media presence, however, can help your business grow by boosting site traffic and increasing interest in your brand. It’s essential that you make time for social media on your weekly to-do list.

In this post, we’ll discuss three ways that a strong social media presence can benefit your affiliate business. In addition, we’ll show you how Affiliate Royale can help – especially when it comes to creating social media-friendly affiliate content. Let’s get started!

1. It Can Drive Quality, Targeted Traffic to Your Website

A Google Analytics graph showing traffic growth

A strong presence on social media can grow your site’s traffic numbers.

Driving traffic to your website is essential for business growth. However, there’s a major difference between ‘regular’ traffic and quality, targeted traffic: targeted traffic is the type more likely to convert.

A strong social media presence helps you connect with your target audience, thus increasing targeted traffic to your website. In addition, social media gives you a platform for promoting on-site content (and attracting readers to said content).

Follow these two steps to use your social media presence to drive quality, targeted traffic to your site:

  1. Find the ‘right’ platforms for your audience. How ‘right’ a platform is will vary according to your business. In a nutshell, you want to find the platforms where your target audience hangs out most.
  2. Create ‘clickable’ content. Content that is compelling and that speaks directly to your target audience leads to more clicks.

Remember that not all traffic is created equal. To drive the ‘right’ traffic to your site, you need to ensure you’re following the steps above, and posting on your social media profiles consistently.

2. It Can Expand Your Industry Reach

Industry reach example as shown by number of Twitter followers

A social media presence enables you to use your followers to expand your industry reach.

Your ‘reach’ simply means how far your brand extends beyond your immediate audience. A strong social media presence can expand your brand’s reach. Your followers will share your content, delivering it to their own followers and so on.

With the proper techniques in place, expanding your reach with the help of social media is a breeze. Here are two particular techniques we think will be most beneficial:

  1. Include industry leaders by using hashtags and mentions. This is a simple way to increase the number of eyes on your posts, and maybe even make some vital business connections.
  2. Create ‘shareable’ content. Incorporate trending topics and audience engagement into your social media campaign to ensure that your content is shareable.

Aside from the obvious benefits of an expanded reach (such as more social media followers and potential leads), social media can also boost your credibility.

3. It Can Boost Your Credibility

An example of brand credibility on Twitter

Pat Flynn of Smart Passive Income hosts live chats (and includes special guests) to boost his brand’s credibility.

As an affiliate marketer, you know that credibility can lend itself to improved sales. A social media presence can lead to such credibility. Your reach on social media can build trust among your followers and establish you as an industry leader.

Of course, presence alone won’t boost your credibility. There are two habits you can adopt to ensure you’re making the most of your platform:

  1. Use your platform to discuss industry-related news. This will show your followers that you’re well informed, and will also help to build your reputation as an industry expert.
  2. Engage with your audience, asking them questions and leading the conversation. Acting as a moderator can help you appear more knowledgeable. It also gives you the chance to see how your audience feels about certain topics.

These two techniques can go a long way in establishing you as an industry expert. A solid industry reputation is important if you want to continue to increase your brand and your website’s credibility.

How Affiliate Royale Helps You Create Stellar Affiliate Content for Social Media

Affiliate Royale is an affiliate program management plugin. Its array of features can help you create a strong affiliate program and establish a strong social media presence through the use of the link and banner creation tool.

To use the tool, just head to Affiliate Royale > Links & Banners, located on the left side of your WordPress dashboard. You’ll be brought to the Links & Banners settings page:

The Affiliate Royale Links and Banners tool options page

Once on the page, you can select either Text or Banner from the Link Type drop-down menu. You can then add the target URL, create a unique slug, and even upload the background image you’d like to use.

Once you’re all done, you just need to copy the code or URL provided by the tool. Now, paste it to your social media profile or posts. It’s really that simple!

Conclusion

With a strong social media presence, you can do more than just gain followers; you can also build lasting relationships with your audience and business contacts. You can broaden your reach and build your reputation. With these benefits, social media marketing is worth the time and effort you spend on it.

In this post, we’ve highlighted the benefits that an active social media presence can bring to your affiliate business. To recap, you can:

  1. Drive quality, targeted traffic to your website.
  2. Expand your industry reach.
  3. Boost your credibility.

Do you have any questions about how a strong social media presence can benefit your affiliate business, or how Affiliate Royale can help? Let us know in the comments section below!

3 Tips for Picking the Right Social Media Platform for Your Affiliate Business

A solid social media presence can provide many valuable benefits. However, a lot of businesses fail to harness the power of social media, or waste time using the ‘wrong’ platform for their needs.

Fortunately, it is possible to choose the ‘right’ social media platform. The right choice is the one that works best for your business, and it can result in increased audience engagement, expanded reach, and even improved sales.

In this post, we’ll discuss the benefits of picking the best social platform for your business. We’ll give you three tips for doing so, and show you how to implement each tip immediately. Let’s get started!

Why Picking the Best Social Media Platform Is Important

The best social media platform will depend upon your business and your goals. Choosing your platform carefully is important for two main reasons:

  1. It enables you to expand your reach. The right platform will have the right people: those who are interested in your business. You can drive more traffic, as well as expand your reach through shares, follows, and likes.
  2. It ensures the best use of your resources. The right platform will enable you to use your resources (time and money) wisely. This will translate to better results, such as increased web traffic and improved sales.

Often, businesses use as many social media platforms as possible. However, this approach can result in a poor return on your investment. It also requires greater resources, and makes consistency in terms of publishing content more challenging.

3 Tips for Picking the Right Social Media Platform for Your Affiliate Business

This task can seem daunting, but if you use these three tips to determine the best social media platform for your marketing business, you’ll be well on your way.

1. Use Audience Demographics to Refine Your Goals

Audience demographics are characteristics that describe the majority of your website visitors. They include age and gender, for example, and also more specific information such as job, income, family life, personality, location, and more.

Demographics are helpful when picking the best social media platform for two main reasons: they can tell you where your audience is most likely to hang out, and can give you insight into the type of content your audience prefers.

There are two key steps to using audience demographics when searching for the best social media platform:

  1. Collect user data with Google Analytics. In this situation, the most helpful information will be ‘acquisition’ (where your website visitors are coming from) and ‘behavior’ (how your visitors act on your site). For example, if many visitors come from or share content to a specific platform, you can use this information to narrow down your search.
  2. Apply this data to known social media demographics. Compare the user data you’ve collected with the demographics of social media platforms to find out which best matches your audience. You can also use general demographics (such as age, location, and gender) to refine your platform search.

Selecting the best platform isn’t exactly a science. Using statistically-obtained data to direct your search, however, will help you improve your campaign’s returns.

2. Align Your Choice With Your Business Goals

Your choices and actions should align with your business’ goals. Choosing a social media platform is no different. The right choice is the one that enables you to complete your goals, so it’s smart to incorporate your business goals into your social media search.

How you do so will depend on the goals you’ve set out for your business. However, there are three general steps you can follow to select the best platform for your business:

  1. Select a main goal. Ask yourself what you hope to achieve with your social media account (e.g. build traffic or expand your reach), and go from there.
  2. Set an action plan for achieving the goal. For example, building traffic would mean creating ‘clickable’ content that leads to your site, while expanding your reach would mean creating shareable content.
  3. Find where your actions will best fit. If shareable content is your goal, Facebook and Pinterest are solid choices. However, Twitter is great for driving traffic, and Instagram can expand your reach.

With a main goal and action plan now laid out, it’s time to consider one last element of your search: resource limitations. Let’s take a closer look.

3. Lay Out and Understand Your Resource Limits

Unlimited resources would be great, but that’s not a reality for most business owners. It’s beneficial to have a clear understanding of your time, money, and commitment limitations when selecting your platform.

Of course, you want to spend your time and money wisely. With defined limits, you can do so by ensuring that you’ve chosen the best platform for your business goals and available resources.

To get started, here are two steps to take:

  1. Uncover your limits. This means understanding how much time and money you can spend, and how much effort you can put into your social media campaign.
  2. Find the platform that best aligns. For example, Facebook may work well with 1–2 posts per day, while Twitter responds best with 10–15 and Pinterest with 5–10. Consider your time budget as well as your spending limits; choose the platform with best Return on Investment (ROI) if money is limited.

Remember – you don’t have to sacrifice a strong social media presence if your resources are limited. Instead, make smart decisions based upon the reality of your business’ limitations. By focusing your resources on the best social media platform, you’ll get the best results.

Conclusion

To expand your reach and improve your brand presence, you need to look beyond your own website and engage your audience on social media. For best results, take the time to choose the best social media platform for your affiliate business.

In the above post, we’ve outlined the three best tips for picking the ‘right’ platform for your business. To quickly recap, they are:

  1. Use audience demographics to refine your goals.
  2. Align your choice with your business goals.
  3. Lay out and understand your resource limits.

Do you have any questions about how to pick the best social media platform for your affiliate marketing business? Let us know in the comments section below!

How to Create Crystal Clear Affiliate Guidelines for Your Program (3 Simple Tips)

Since new affiliates will enter your program with a wide array of prior experiences, it can be hard to determine if they’re all on the same page about marketing practices. This lack of conformity can lead to a number of issues, including the improper use of link disclosures and an unfavorable promotion of your business.

Fortunately, creating clear affiliate guidelines will help you lead your affiliates down the right path. Set guidelines ensure your program runs smoothly and consistently – which will reflect favorably on your business.

In this post, we’ll discuss what affiliate guidelines are and explain the benefits they can provide to your program. Then we’ll show you how to create crystal clear guidelines with three simple tips, and explain how Affiliate Royale can help along the way. Let’s get started!

What Affiliate Guidelines Are (And Why Your Program Needs Them)

StudioPress affiliate guidelines

StudioPress is just one business among many that clearly outlines affiliate guidelines on its website.

Unlike rules, which are generally considered mandatory, affiliate guidelines are recommended best practices as outlined by the program manager. Here are just a few reasons your program can benefit from developing affiliate guidelines:

  • They ensure all affiliates are on the same page: This helps your program remain consistent, since affiliates will all follow the same practices and procedures.
  • They keep expectations clear: This lets you focus more on your business and less on training new (and existing) affiliates.
  • They ensure that appropriate practices are followed: While they aren’t hard and fast rules (to allow for some flexibility when reacting to unique circumstances), guidelines still enable you to equip your affiliates with the information they need to make decisions.

With the above benefits in mind, it’s easy to see why so many marketers opt to create guidelines for their affiliate programs. Let’s talk about how to do so!

How to Create Crystal Clear Affiliate Guidelines for Your Program (3 Simple Tips)

The process of creating set guidelines for your affiliates may seem overwhelming at first. However, the following three tips will ensure you get off to a great start.

1. Incorporate Relevant FTC Mandates

A link disclosure on a blog post

Link disclosure is just one example of an FTC mandate, and you should be sure to include it within your affiliate guidelines.

FTC mandates are guidelines laid out by the Federal Trade Commission that protect both consumers and marketers. Many of these mandates give crucial advice for how to best run your affiliate business, so incorporating them into your own guidelines can be a smart idea.

When you’re looking to create crystal clear guidelines for your program, here are a few ways you can make use of FTC mandates:

  • Know which mandates apply to your business. For marketers, link disclosure and advertising mandates are perhaps the most important categories. However, it doesn’t hurt to look through the FTC’s Business Center for a better idea of which guidelines apply to you.
  • Create guidelines with specific mandates in mind. For best results, we recommend directly referencing the mandates, and using them as a base for some of your guidelines. That way, your affiliates can easily find more information if they need to.

As the manager, it’s your job to keep on top of FTC mandates and related updates, and revise your guidelines accordingly. To do this, you can make it a point to visit the FTC’s News and Events regularly (or set up Google Alerts for any FTC-related events).

2. Include Examples Throughout Your Guidelines

An example within affiliate program guidelines

Examples provide affiliates with clarity, such as this one from DefenderShield’s Affiliate Program guidelines.

Clarity is key when it comes to creating guidelines you want your affiliates to actually follow. That’s why examples are an excellent addition to your program’s policies.

Examples are beneficial because they make your guidelines clearer, so they’re more likely to be followed as intended. There are two major ways you can incorporate examples into your guidelines:

  1. Use different forms of media. Images, videos, and GIFs can break up your content and highlight key points. This makes them ideal media forms for examples.
  2. Focus on relevance. This means you need to understand what situations your affiliates regularly face, and provide them with examples that enable them to follow the guidelines during those moments.

If you want particular situations or methods handled a certain way, examples are the best way to communicate your requirements.

3. Make Your Guidelines Memorable

A section of Etsy's affiliate program guidelines

Etsy uses an easy-to-read format to make its guidelines simple to follow and remember.

Memorable guidelines are less likely to be forgotten or misinterpreted by your affiliates. Fortunately, it’s quite easy to make your guidelines easy to remember:

  • Keep them short: Concision is the way to go, especially since some affiliates will scan the guidelines instead of reading them in-depth.
  • Make them relevant: Guidelines that can be easily applied to real situations stick out to affiliates, and are most likely to be followed on a regular basis.

Another way to make your guidelines memorable is to use an easy-to-read format. This means including bullet points, paragraph breaks, and bold and italic font to get your point across clearly.

How to Display Your Guidelines With Affiliate Royale

Once you’ve created clear guidelines, it’s time to consider how to best display them. This is an important step, because guidelines are naturally less likely to be followed if they’re hard to find.

Fortunately, Affiliate Royale can help you to display your guidelines front and center with the Affiliate Dashboard. To set up the dashboard, visit the back end of your site and go to Affiliate RoyaleOptionsDashboard Settings. Here, you can add a welcome message and even navigation pages:

Affiliate Royale affiliate dashboard navigation links

As a unique way to display your guidelines, you can create a FAQ page or resource hub to supplement the official policy. This can be linked to in the dashboard’s main navigation menu, which will make it easy for afiiliates to notice and access.

Conclusion

Running your affiliate program isn’t always easy, but there are ways to streamline the process. While you may encounter the odd problem now and then, with clear affiliate guidelines you’ll be able to rest easier, since you’ll know your affiliates have the tools they need to follow proper marketing practices.

In this post, we’ve outlined three tips you can follow to create crystal clear guidelines for your affiliate program. To quickly recap, you’ll want to:

  1. Incorporate relevant FTC mandates.
  2. Include examples throughout your guidelines.
  3. Make your guidelines memorable.

Do you have any questions about how to create clear affiliate guidelines? Let us know in the comments section below!

3 Stellar Tips for Recruiting Quality Affiliates to Your Program

The quality of your program’s affiliates will contribute significantly to your business’ success. This is why finding the best affiliates possible is one step in the recruitment process you can’t afford to overlook. However, even if you have a solid affiliate program in place, you may still struggle to find the right candidates.

Fortunately, it’s possible to recruit valuable affiliates to your program without digging through dozens of applications. By following a few basic strategies, you can complete this process quickly and effectively.

In this post, we’ll first discuss why quality affiliates are so important. Then we’ll outline three stellar tips that will help you find and recruit quality affiliates to your program. Let’s get started!

Why Quality Affiliates Are Important

Affiliates are the soul of your program, which makes it essential that you make the best selections possible. While quality can be subjective, there are two concrete elements that contribute to this criteria. You’ll want to look for affiliates with experience and industry knowledge, as well as those you can trust to follow program policies and represent your business.

One of the most obvious ways these high-quality affiliates can benefit your business is through increased sales. Plus, when you work with awesome affiliates they can also encourage others to join your program. Therefore, finding the right affiliates for your business should be a top priority.

3 Stellar Tips for Recruiting Quality Affiliates to Your Program

While finding quality affiliates may seem like a daunting task at first, there are a number of simple strategies that can bolster your efforts. Let’s take a look at a few of the best ones.

1. Actively Network on Social Media

As a marketer, you may already use social media to reach new leads. However, networking on social media can also help you improve your affiliate outreach efforts.

There are two main benefits to using social media this way. First, an active presence establishes you as a credible business, thereby enhancing your affiliate program. Second, it helps you expand your reach and open up your affiliate products to new audiences. This paves the way for affiliate recruits you may not have been able to reach otherwise.

To implement this strategy, you’ll need to choose the right platform for attracting industry affiliates. You can do this by analyzing audience demographics (in this case, your ‘audience’ is affiliate recruits). When you’ve settled on the right platform, it’s important to incorporate targeted keywords in your content and follow platform-specific standards, such as using Mentions on Facebook or hashtags on Twitter:

An example of keyword usage in the form of a hashtag on Twitter

Overall, consistency is key when it comes to social media. This means you need to stay active on your accounts by frequently participating in discussions and sharing valuable content. We recommend starting off with just one or two platforms, so you can focus in on them.

2. Reward Affiliates for Their Recruitment Efforts

Along with promoting your products, your affiliates can also help advocate for your program. This can ease your burden, and can also lead to an increase in quality affiliate recruits.

Giving your affiliates rewards for their recruitment efforts provides them with motivation. In particular, recurring rewards (such as allowing your affiliates to make a percentage of their recruits’ sales) motivate them to select new affiliates they believe will perform well. This is a win-win for you.

Your first step in this strategy will be to select a reward type. This means deciding between a one-time or recurring reward, and determining its exact form. Then you’ll need to implement that reward. When you use Affiliate Royale, this is a simple task because our plugin enables you to set up affiliate tiers:

Affiliate Royale's commission settings

All you need to do is head to Affiliate Royale Options in your WordPress dashboard, and select Commission Settings. You can then set commission rates per affiliate level, and even enable recurring commissions for parent affiliates (those who recruited others to your program).

3. Partner With Like-Minded Businesses

Thanks to affiliate marketing’s expanding popularity, you have a number of business growth options at your disposal. For example, you can partner with like-minded businesses for the purposes of affiliate expansion. This means finding other industry businesses with affiliates, and working with them to expand both programs.

The best thing about this kind of partnership is that you get access to an already-established affiliate list. While this doesn’t automatically mean you’ll gain all of your partner’s affiliates, your social media presence and affiliate incentives (as outlined in the above two tips) can help attract many of those affiliates to your program.

Of course, you’ll first need to locate complementary businesses that aren’t competitors within your industry. For instance, if you sell fitness equipment you could partner with a health foods business that has an active affiliate program. It may take a bit of work to find the right match, but here are two tips to get you started:

  1. Use your connections. If you have an active social media presence, it’s likely that you know someone (even indirectly) who would make a great partner.
  2. Attend industry events. This is a perfect way to expand your networking to the real world, and get a personal feel for any potential business partners.

It’s also a smart idea to offer a special affiliate commission rate to your new partner’s affiliates. This will encourage more newcomers to take the plunge.

Conclusion

A strong and successful affiliate program rests on a foundation of quality affiliates. Therefore, it’s essential to refine your recruitment efforts and focus on finding the affiliates who are best suited to your program.

In this post, we’ve outlined three tips you can use to find and recruit quality affiliates. To quickly recap, they are:

  1. Actively network on social media.
  2. Reward affiliates for their recruitment efforts.
  3. Partner with like-minded businesses.

Do you have any questions about how to recruit quality affiliates to your program, or how Affiliate Royale can help? Let us know in the comments section below!

3 Ways to Drive High-Quality Traffic to Your Affiliate Marketing Site

Generating high-quality site traffic is critical if you want your business to succeed – after all, you can’t make sales without visitors. Unfortunately, building traffic can be a slow uphill battle, especially for a fledgling affiliate marketing site.

Fortunately, there are a number of techniques you can utilize to drive traffic to your website. When used correctly, they’ll bring you the audience you seek and enable you to achieve your marketing goals.

In this post, we’ll discuss the importance of high-quality traffic and why it is beneficial for your affiliate website. We’ll then offer three ways you can drive targeted visitors to your site, and suggest how you can implement them effectively. Let’s get started!

Why High-Quality Traffic Is Important for Your Affiliate Marketing Site

In affiliate marketing, high-quality traffic refers to visitors that engage – and in some instances, convert (i.e. make purchases). This is different than general traffic, as quality traffic is more likely to have a purpose (such as purchasing a product you promote) for visiting your site.

Quality traffic is important for the growth of your affiliate marketing site (and for reaching your goals). In fact, there are two specific benefits your site may experience as a direct result of increased high-quality traffic:

  1. An improvement in sales: As more targeted traffic gets driven to your site, it could likely result in more sales.
  2. An increase in brand exposure: With more traffic coming to your site, you can further publicize your brand to a wider audience – this is key to targeting even more quality traffic.

However, it’s not enough to understand the importance of high-quality traffic. You must also know how to bring it to your site.

3 Ways to Drive High-Quality Traffic to Your Affiliate Marketing Site

Driving traffic to your website isn’t difficult, especially when you consider the following three ways to do so. Let’s take a look!

1. Offer Top-Notch Content

HubSpot blog post headline

HubSpot utilizes strong and informative headlines, as well as bright and catching images, to engage readers.

As a marketer, quality content should be the cornerstone of your website. This is the kind of content that provides your site visitors with value, and simultaneously boosts your credibility – establishing you as an industry authority.

The importance of quality content for driving traffic cannot be overstated. That’s because its presence could set your site apart from your competitors. With this in mind, it’s important to create top-notch content consistently. Here are a few tips to remember:

  1. Use eye-catching headlines. There are a number of elements to include, and the CoSchedule Headline Analyzer provides you with a great start.
  2. Make it valuable. This means incorporating actionable advice, and answering the questions your audience is asking.
  3. Make it engaging. You can do this by incorporating different forms of media (such as images, infographics, and videos) and making sure it’s relatable with your target audience.

Overall, the best way to ensure you’re creating top-notch content is to focus on your audience. This ensures you’re writing with their needs (and wants) in mind, and will further improve engagement and credibility.

2. Become (And Stay) Active on Social Media

Wendy's Twitter marketing post

Wendy’s is a brand with an active social media page. This keeps customers engaged and likely plays a role in driving sales.

Social media enables you to engage with both current and potential customers, and this means an active social media presence can be beneficial for your business’s growth. What’s more, it can drive site traffic by improving your business’ authority (by showing customers you care about their satisfaction) and by strengthening your brand and image.

The important thing (other than being active) is to stay active on social media. This can be difficult when you’re in the midst of running a business, but here are a few tips to keep you on target:

  1. Find the right platform for audience engagement: To find the right platform for your audience, analyze the demographics of your target reader, then apply your results to known social media demographics. You should find some crossover that helps you choose a suitable platform or two.
  2. Stick to a clear posting schedule: Of course, you should aim to engage with your customers on a regular basis. However, a solid posting schedule serves as a good base to start from.

Consistency is key when it comes to engaging your customers on social media. This is why it’s vital that you not only become active on social media, but stay active, too.

3. Use Search Engine Optimization

Google search engine results page

With so many results to compete with, it’s important that you utilize Search Engine Optimization (SEO) on your business’ site.

Search Engine Optimization (SEO) is a process that improves your ranking on Search Engine Results Pages (SERPs) – this makes you more visible to potential traffic. In addition, a higher SERP ranking also makes it more likely for your site to be clicked on by search engine users.

While there are an abundance of SEO techniques, there are a few techniques that have more of an impact on ranking factors than others. These include:

  1. Long-tail keywords: Due to less competition, keywords that range from two to five words in length can help you to rank higher.
  2. Quality backlinks: The more websites that have links pointing to your site, the higher you’ll rank in terms of authority and credibility.
  3. Comprehensive content: Lengthier content tends to rank higher on Google’s SERPs, with the average first page result containing 1,890 words.

If you’re a WordPress user, you can also use a suitable SEO plugin, such as Yoast SEO, to further improve your ranking efforts.

Conclusion

As a new affiliate, you may find yourself struggling to attract the desired type of traffic to your website. Fortunately, driving quality traffic isn’t difficult with the right techniques in place.

In this post, we’ve showed you three ways you can drive high-quality web traffic to your marketing site. To quickly recap:

  1. Offer top-notch content.
  2. Become (and stay) active on social media.
  3. Use search engine optimization.

Do you have any questions about how you can drive quality traffic to your affiliate marketing website? Let us know in the comments section below!

3 Problems You May Face as an Affiliate Manager (And How to Overcome Them)

Much like any other business, running a successful affiliate program can be overwhelming. Unexpected problems can crop up any time, and a delay in addressing these issues can hinder your plans. As an affiliate manager this can be stressful, especially if you don’t know how to overcome them.

Fortunately, the use of a stellar affiliate management plugin can help you deal with these problems easily. Plugins such as Affiliate Royale enable you to take full control of your program, and will provide you with practically all of the tools you’ll require to meet the needs of both your program and your affiliates.

In this post, we’ll highlight three common problems faced by affiliate managers, and provide advice on how to overcome each one using Affiliate Royale’s comprehensive feature set. Let’s get started!

1. Poor Communication With Your Affiliates

As a program manager, your affiliates are your most important asset. This means you need to stay in contact with them, both to inform them of program updates and changes, and to stay on top of their concerns and questions.

Unfortunately, poor communication is a common occurrence in affiliate programs. This happens when managers withhold information – such as sales numbers and upcoming updates – and it can lead to a lack of trust at best.

Given that affiliates are responsible for promoting your products, poor communication with them can mean fewer sales for you, potentially resulting in less affiliates joining your program. The solution is simple: start communicating with your affiliates! Let’s take a closer look at how Affiliate Royale can help you do just that.

The Affiliate Dashboard is the place to start. Navigate to Affiliate Royale > Options, then open the Dashboard Settings, where you can enter a personalized message to your affiliates:

Affiliate Royale affiliate dashboard settings

You can also add further pages via Dashboard Settings > Additional Nav Pages. Here, you can link to a Contact page, add a Policy page, and even create an FAQ page to keep your affiliates in the loop.

2. Theft of Your Affiliates Links

Link stealing is the action of copying an affiliate link URL, then replacing the information at the end of the link (such as an affiliate ID) with your own. This is a direct form of stealing – taking potential earnings away from other affiliates – and while you aim to only work with trustworthy associates, sometimes it happens.

Of course, link stealing doesn’t always happen among affiliates. Essentially, anyone could look to score a discount on a linked product by signing up for it as an affiliate, then purchasing the item with their own link. In the majority of cases they get caught; however, it’s still a nuisance to deal with.

The problems caused by link stealing vary based on the culprit. When it happens among affiliates, it can create feelings of hostility. This is because affiliates may feel as if their links aren’t protected, and other less-honest affiliates are benefiting from their work. In short, it can flood your program with affiliates who are stealing from you.

The only real way to reduce the risk of links being stolen is to cloak them. This makes it impossible for others (either inside or outside the program) to replace the affiliate information at the end of the URL with their own. To get started, we recommend a link shortener plugin, such as Pretty Link Pro.

Pretty Link Pro add link page

Cloaking your links is a simple process. Once the plugin is installed, navigate to Pretty Link > Add New Link on the left side of the WordPress dashboard. From here, select a redirection type (cloaking, in this case), enter the target URL, then add a slug to the end of the link. Now, your affiliate links are safeguarded against theft!

Finally, an additional tool – offered by Affiliate Royale – is link tracking. This enables you to keep an eye on link clicks in real-time so you can catch on to shady behavior quickly.

3. Failure to Empower Your Affiliates

As a manager, you (of course) have a lot on your plate. This means you may not always have the time to empower your affiliates, which can lead to poor performance.

Empowering your affiliates simply means providing them with the tools and resources they need to make smart and effective decisions. Failure to do so can lead to a number of issues. For you, it means giving up some control and trusting your affiliates as marketing professionals to make their own decisions. You can overcome this problem in a few ways, including with the help of Affiliate Royale.

While you could offer empowerment in a number of ways, creating an affiliate resource hub is a stellar idea you should consider first. This is a page (or collection of pages) that contains tools, guides, tutorials, and more on how to use your products, the intricacies of your affiliate program, and anything else you think they need to do their jobs effectively.

Affiliate Royale affiliate dashboard navigation links

As for creating your hub, the details of this will be down to you. However, once you’re ready to rock and roll, you can simply add it as a navigation page via your affiliate dashboard, and you’re all set!

Conclusion

Whether you’ve just started your affiliate business, or it’s been going for a while, problems can occur that can make running your business difficult. However, with an affiliate management plugin such as Affiliate Royale, you can implement measures that can help you overcome these problems.

In the above post, we’ve highlighted three common problems faced by affiliate managers and how they can overcome them with Affiliate Royale. To quickly recap:

  1. Poor communication with your affiliates.
  2. Theft of your affiliates’ links.
  3. Failure to empower your affiliates.

What kinds of affiliate management problems have you faced? Let us know in the comments section below!

How to Determine Commission Rates for Your Affiliate Marketing Program (in 3 Steps)

As the head of an affiliate program, one of the most difficult decisions you’ll make is how to determine suitable commission rates. For some, this may be an overwhelming experience, especially if you are not familiar with the steps involved.

Fortunately, this can be a straightforward process. All it requires is a few simple calculations, and you’ll be able to set rates that will benefit both you and your affiliates.

In this post, we’ll touch on the importance of competitive commission rates. Then, we’ll provide you with a step-by-step guide to help you determine suitable commission rates for your program. Finally, you’ll learn how to set commission rates in Affiliate Royale, enabling you to implement your program immediately. Let’s get started!

Why Your Affiliate Business Needs Competitive Commission Rates

Simply put, commission rates are reward-based payments that your affiliates will receive upon the completion of a sale. These rates typically include two separate elements: a base rate and bonuses.

When setting your business’ commission rates, it can be tempting to keep them low to maximize your own profits. However, there are two major benefits of providing more lucrative rates:

  1. They can attract high-performing affiliates.
  2. They can lead to increased conversions, as affiliates will have an incentive (i.e. higher pay) to do well.

While you may be paying each affiliate more per sale, you could end up seeing more sales overall. Of course, this increase your business’ revenue and will be better for your affiliate program in the long run.

How to Determine Commission Rates for Your Affiliate Marketing Program (in 3 Steps)

As we mentioned, determining your commission rates doesn’t have to be difficult. The three steps below will allow you to accurately determine commission rates for your affiliate program. Let’s jump right in!

Step 1. Determine the Maximum Rate You Can Afford to Pay Out

Shopify's profit margin calculator

The Shopify profit margin calculator can help you to determine your maximum rate.

In short, the maximum rate is the most you can afford to pay out to your affiliates without cutting into your profit margins or raising prices. With this figured out, you then have a boundary to work with, which will also help you when pricing your product.

Determining maximum rate isn’t difficult. Just grab a calculator, and perform these three simple steps:

  1. Determine your profit margin. This shows what you’re actually making on each sale when your cost of doing business is factored in.
  2. Consider how much you need to run your business. This includes your own paycheck, as well as any business operations (such as expenses and investments) and taxes.
  3. Subtract step 2 from step 1. The result of subtracting one from the other is your maximum rate.

Keep in mind that your maximum rate is not your base commission. To determine that, let’s first take a look at bonuses and incentives.

Step 2. Factor In Any Bonuses and Incentives

LeadPages sign-up incentive for affiliates

LeadPages uses a sign-up offer to incentivize affiliates to join.

Bonuses and incentives are payments above base rate, and they’re awarded to affiliates who have performed above expectations. As such, they’re vital for a motivated and happy team.

Allowing for bonuses and incentives will provide you with wiggle room in your regular rates (i.e. you can set them a little lower depending on how generous you are). This means you can offer bonuses while ultimately protecting your profits.

This step isn’t difficult. To get you started, here are two ways to factor bonuses and incentives into your commission rates:

  1. Consider the bonuses or incentives you’ll use. You can offer performance-based bonuses, or those based on affiliate recruitment.
  2. Set commission tiers. This enables you to restrict the payouts you make, while still rewarding your affiliate appropriately.

If you’re looking for an easy way to keep your affiliates on-board, then bonuses and incentives are one element to include in your program.

Step 3. Compare Your Commission Rates to Your Competitors’

Monitor Backlinks Free Backlink Checker SEO Tool

Free tools, such as the Monitor Backlinks Free Backlink Checker SEO Tool, can help you to learn the unpublished rates of your competitors’ affiliate programs.

Comparing your rates to your competitors’ helps you to get an idea of industry standards. With these in mind, you can then set more competitive rates, or set lower base rates with higher bonuses or incentives to entice affiliates to join your program.

The vast majority of affiliate programs have commission rates stated clearly on their sites, which makes comparing rates simple:

  1. Utilize Google. Entering “‘Competitor name’ + ‘affiliate program’”  into your browser’s search bar will typically bring up the competitor’s affiliate page, which could list their current commission rates.
  2. Keep records of your findings. This doesn’t have to be complex. You could use a simple spreadsheet to record competitors’ names, affiliate page links, commission rates, and any other data you think to be relevant. Once you’ve collected the data, it’ll be easy to make comparisons.

If you’re having trouble finding your competitors’ rates, you can also reach out to their affiliates. Use a competitor backlink tool to find affiliates who link to your competitors on their websites, then send a short note inquiring about current commission rates.  While not foolproof, this method may get you the information you seek.

How to Set Commission Rates in Affiliate Royale

Affiliate Royale is an affiliate program management plugin, and the only one you’ll likely ever need. Its list of extensive features includes link tracking, a link and banner creator, and even the ability to set up to 100 commission levels:

Affiliate Royale's commission settings

Setting commission levels in Affiliate Royale is a breeze. Once you purchase a plan and install the plugin, locate the Affiliate Royale menu on the left-hand side of your WordPress dashboard. Next, navigate to Options > Commission Settings and enter your commission rates. You can add more commission levels by clicking add level. Of course, remember to click Update Options when you’re finished in order to save your changes.

Conclusion

Determining commission rates is one of the biggest decisions you’ll make as an affiliate program manager. Fortunately, the process can be straightforward, and there are a number of things you can do to ensure you offer competitive rates to your affiliates.

In this post, we’ve highlighted the importance of competitive affiliate program rates. In addition, we’ve provided you with a breakdown of steps for determining affiliate commission rates. To quickly recap:

  1. Determine the maximum rate you can afford to pay out.
  2. Factor in any bonuses and incentives.
  3. Compare your commission rates to your competitors’.

Do you have any questions about determining commission rates, or how to set them up within Affiliate Royale? Let us know in the comments section below!

3 Tips for Increasing Transparency in Your Affiliate Marketing

As an affiliate marketer, it’s important to be transparent regarding your program. From a business perspective, transparency could help you to yield greater conversion rates and sales. More importantly, it will promote trust between you and your affiliates. Unfortunately, understanding what constitutes transparency – and how to achieve it – can be difficult.

Fortunately, there are a few practices – such as the disclosure of affiliate links and the sharing of statistics – that add transparency to your affiliate program. When implemented, these practices will benefit you, your audience, and your affiliates.

In this post, we’ll first offer an introduction to affiliate program transparency. You’ll learn how transparency can benefit your business, before we offer three tips you can use to implement transparency in your own affiliate program. Let’s get started!

What Transparency Is (And How It Benefits Your Affiliate Program)

TextbookRush transparent affiliate program example

TextbookRush has a transparent affiliate program, providing affiliates with real-time data and encouraging contact.

Transparency is a concept that implies openness, communication, and accountability – all important concepts within affiliate marketing. After all, for affiliate marketing to succeed, strong relationships have to be formed, and that’s only possible when transparency is achieved.

To get an idea of what transparency looks like in marketing, here are three tell-tale signs that an affiliate business practices transparency:

  1. It follows Federal Trade Commission (FTC) practices, especially as it pertains to link and advertising disclosures.
  2. The manager isn’t afraid to answer questions or concerns, and speaks openly with affiliates.
  3. What’s more, they’re open with affiliates about the program’s status and policies.

Transparency has a variety of benefits, although the overarching positive is that by employing it you’ll likely attract high-quality affiliates. This is because they’ll be more willing to work with open and communicative affiliate companies. What’s more, customers trust companies that treat them respectfully, and this includes disclosing when and where affiliate links are being used.

Overall, there’s a lot to gain by implementing transparency, so let’s take a look at how to do so.

3 Tips for Increasing the Transparency in Your Affiliate Marketing

Increasing your program’s transparency is quite simple. Here are three tips to get you started on the right path.

1. Disclose Affiliate Links

affiliate link disclosure example

A Squirrel in the Kitchen follows proper affiliate link disclosure guidelines.

Perhaps one of the most important things you’ll learn as a marketer is how to properly disclose affiliate links. Doing this indicates you’ll earn commission upon clicking the link. This is an essential technique, especially as your affiliates will be looking to you to learn fair and best practices. In addition, you’ll also build trust with your visitors.

With the above in mind, here are a few tips for disclosing affiliate links properly:

  1. Follow FTC guidelines. Essentially, you want to focus on clear and conspicuous disclosures. This means disclosures placed near affiliate links and repeated when necessary.
  2. Use clear language. Use obvious words, such as ‘commission’ and ‘paid’ to let your readers know that you do receive payments from affiliate links.
  3. Be consistent. Use the same disclosure message throughout your site. This will make it easier for consumers to recognize, and generally avoids confusion.

As a marketer, affiliate links are at the heart of your business. This requires you use them wisely (i.e. practice proper disclosure), so you’ll build trust with your readers while also showing your affiliates how it’s done.

2. Create Clear Affiliate Policies

Etsy affiilate policy page

Etsy’s affiliate policy is thorough and clear – yours should be too.

Affiliate policies are simply guidelines that clearly outline expectations. They tell your affiliates what you expect from them, and when presented correctly, can help your program to appear cohesive and professional.

In order to create clear affiliate policies, include these three steps in your process:

  1. Be consistent and use direct language. Use obvious language that cannot be misinterpreted, and provide further explanation for more elusive concepts.
  2. Provide examples. Include screenshots, videos, or other visual aids on your affiliate policy page if possible. This enables you to clearly show your affiliates exactly how you’d like things to be done.
  3. Be open to (and invite) communication. Your affiliates should always feel free to come to you with any questions, and this has the benefit of strengthening your new open and transparent policy.

In short, a clear affiliate policy will cut down on poor business practices (such as improperly disclosing links) and provide your affiliates with a go-to guide for common questions and misunderstandings  – so it pays to spend some time on this.

3. Share Relevant Affiliate Reports

Affiliate Royale affiliate dashboard stats

With Affiliate Royale, affiliates can track their own stats within the Affiliate Dashboard.

Good reporting enables you to see your affiliate sales, earnings, and link clicks all from a central location. While some managers will monitor these privately, it’s a good idea to give affiliates access to this information too. This is because firstly, your affiliates are likely see this data as ‘belonging’ to them. However, a greater benefit is that having clear statistics can help them to improve in the future.

Fortunately, Affiliate Royale makes sharing relevant reports with your affiliates simple. To set up the affiliate dashboard, find the Affiliate Royale menu on the left side of the WordPress dashboard. Then, navigate to Options > Dashboard Settings. Here, you can add a personalized welcome message, and also adjust the page width to your liking:

Affiliate Royale affiliate dashboard settings

The dashboard will include a number of default pages, such as Stats, Links & Banners, and Payment History. The Stats page is where each affiliate’s reports are displayed, and in addition, each affiliate receives their own personal dashboard (with accompanying login details) once they’ve signed up.

Conclusion

One of the best things you can do for your affiliate program is to implement transparent marketing practices. This leads to trust among your audience and your affiliates, and ultimately leads to high-quality affiliate recruits and more sales. It’s a win-win all around!

In this post, we’ve offered three tips for increasing the transparency in your affiliate marketing. Let’s quickly recap:

  1. Disclose your affiliate links.
  2. Create clear and thorough affiliate policies.
  3. Share any relevant reports and statistics with your affiliates.

Do you have any questions about transparency in affiliate marketing, or how you can go about introducing it into your program? Let us know in the comments section below!