How to Run a Contest for Your Affiliates (And Why You Should)

Affiliate marketing doesn’t have to be all work for your affiliates. In fact, you should aim to mix things up from time to time. Otherwise, you might find that they become bored with your program, which can lead to a decrease in your profits.

One smart way of motivating your members is by periodically running a contest. By tracking their performances and setting an end goal to strive for, you can more effectively engage your affiliates and boost your conversions in the process.

In this article, we’ll show you how to run a contest using Affiliate Royale, and explain what you’ll need to consider in order to pull it off successfully. Finally, we’ll discuss how you can track the results in order to find your winner. Let’s go!

Why You Should Consider Running an Affiliate Contest

Running a contest for your affiliates isn’t just a fun side project. In fact, it can motivate your affiliates to perform better, which can in turn help to increase your conversions and income.

A contest is something fun and different from the usual way of making money using affiliate marketing. It can spur on all of your affiliates to work harder in order to win, and in particular can inspire affiliates who may not have been very invested in your program recently.

To achieve this, all you really need to do is provide your affiliates with an incentive. This could be in the form of prizes or other rewards, which you can give to those who perform the best in response to set criteria.

Of course, you’ll also want to make the contest and its current results visible to everybody. By showing the current standings, you’ll be spurring on the contestants to perform even better.

Fortunately, both of these things are pretty easy to set up. Let’s look at how you can create and run your affiliate contest.

How to Run a Contest for Your Affiliates (In 3 Steps)

If you want to start your own affiliate contest, Affiliate Royale is here to help. The following three steps are all you need in order to plan and execute a successful contest for your affiliates!

1. Specify Your Contest’s Goal and Prizes

Naturally, you first need to decide what the goal of the contest will be. The most obvious setup is to have affiliates compete for who can make the most sales within a given time frame. However, you could try something a little different instead, like seeing who can recruit the most new affiliates to your program.

You’ll also need to come up with some worthwhile prizes. You’ll need to find desirable rewards that make the contest worth the contestants’ time and effort. What you decide to use depends on your budget and business, but the easiest option is usually to use items from your own stock. However, you could also get a sponsor for your contest, and have them supply the prizes.

Finally, you’ll also want to consider the contest’s duration. This will depend a lot on your business and the number of affiliates you have, but a month is usually an ideal period. It’s also important that you make the start and end times very clear in advance and throughout the competition, so contestants can prepare sufficiently.

2. Provide Information and Resources to Your Affiliates

If you want your contest to be a success, you need to make people aware of it. This applies both before it starts, and all the way until the moment that winners are announced. Your dashboard in Affiliate Royale lets you communicate information about the contest:

The Affiliate Royale affiliate dashboard

Affiliate Royale also enables you to share links and banners that contestants can use during the competition. For example, if your contest revolves around selling particular products, you should make sure that you provide affiliates with resources to help them promote these products. This will ensure that they perform better, while also leveling the playing field.

Your dashboard is also the perfect place to share the current leaderboard during the contest. Here, you can show off the affiliates who are currently doing the best, which will motivate them and others to perform better and climb to the top. Just make sure that you update the standings often, so everyone will know how they stand.

3. Track Your Affiliates’ Performance Using Analytics

Of course, a crucial part of any contest is tracking the progress of the contestants. How you do this depends on the contest’s objective. For example, if you want to see who has made the most referrals during a certain period, you can use Affiliate Royale’s Top Referrers data:

A list of Top Referrers in Affiliate Royale.

However, if you’re gauging who can recruit the most new affiliates, you could add a field to the affiliate sign-up page, letting newcomers indicate who referred them to the program.

Most importantly, your dashboard enables you to easily see who has won when the contest is over. You can then reach out to them and deliver their prizes. It’s also a smart idea to feature the winners on your website in some manner. This will highlight their success, and motivate others to do better when the next contest rolls around!

Conclusion

Hosting a contest for your affiliates is not just a fun way of motivating them into performing better. It can also help increase your conversions, and bring new and old affiliates back into your roster. The key is to make sure your contest is set up correctly, and to track each affiliate’s performance throughout the process.

Fortunately, this is made simple with Affiliate Royale. Using our plugin, you can handle every aspect of your competition effortlessly. The following steps are all that’s required for creating a successful contest:

  1. Specify your contest’s goal and prizes.
  2. Provide information and resources to your affiliates.
  3. Track your affiliates’ performance using analytics.

Do you have any questions about running a contest for your affiliates? Let us know in the comments section below!

Why Being an Affiliate Marketer Doesn’t Have to Mean ‘Selling Out’

Affiliate marketing can be a lucrative prospect for any talented blogger. However, you may worry that using your blog to promote someone else’s products could be seen as ‘selling out’.

While it may seem like affiliate marketing and honest blogging are oil and water, the truth is quite the opposite. In fact, by sticking to your principles and staying open with your audience, you can see financial results from your hard work without harming your reputation.

In this article, we’ll explain how you can create a profitable and honest affiliate blog. Let’s get started!

A Brief Introduction to Affiliate Marketing

An affiliate link for the film Spider-Man: Homecoming.

Affiliate links, such as this one from the film blog BirthMoviesDeath, let you provide value to your users in an honest fashion.

If you want to monetize your blog, affiliate marketing is one of the easiest and best techniques. As an affiliate marketer, you’ll link to another business’ products on your site. When somebody clicks on one of those links and ends up making a purchase, you’ll be paid a commission that’s usually relative to the item’s total cost.

You can probably imagine how this technique could work well on a blog. You can include affiliate links in your posts, feature specific products, or even write product reviews. However, while becoming an affiliate can certainly be lucrative, a prevalent myth claims that doing so is akin to ‘selling out’. After all, if you’re making money by promoting products and services, surely that makes you untrustworthy?

However, this is far from the truth. In fact, you stand to gain a lot more by being honest, rather than blindly using affiliate marketing to make a quick buck. Let’s talk about how to approach this type of marketing with integrity.

3 Ways You Can Be an Affiliate Marketer Without Selling Out

Below, we’ll look at three ways you can use affiliate marketing without compromising your principles. Keep these recommendations in mind to create a trustworthy and profitable affiliate blog!

1. Create Honest and Informative Content

Your number-one priority should always be to produce the best content possible. The quality of your content is what encourages readers to come back to your blog. Plus, it helps to determine how highly your site is ranked by Google.

If your site doesn’t offer posts that people want to read, you won’t be able to find an audience in the first place. Many blogs make this mistake, churning out content just to spread affiliate links, and it’s rarely effective. Instead, you’ll want to focus on writing high-quality posts that offer value to your readers.

What’s more, being an affiliate marketer is not about simply praising every single product. You should always write honestly, especially if you create product reviews. Readers will want to hear your actual thoughts, so by being upfront about an item’s pros and cons, you can provide value while still driving traffic through your affiliate links.

Finally, it’s also important that you disclose your affiliate links clearly throughout your site. This is a key factor in whether or not visitors will find you trustworthy.

2. Feature Products That You Use Personally

One of the best things about affiliate marketing is how it enables you to pick and choose which products and programs you want to work with. Often, the smartest strategy is to focus on products that you use personally.

For example, let’s say you run a beauty blog. You could write about the beauty products you use, discussing them earnestly while including affiliate links where appropriate. This gives your readers an accurate appraisal, while also letting them easily purchase the items they find appealing.

Thanks to this technique, your blog posts will offer more quality to your readers due to your first-hand knowledge. Plus, you can remain honest in your reviews. People can usually tell when they’re being sold something the marketer doesn’t actually believe in, so this approach helps you avoid coming across as a mouthpiece for another brand.

3. Don’t Do It Just for the Money

While earning money is naturally the main reason to use any type of marketing, it’s not always the best strategy to focus solely on this aspect. First of all, affiliate marketing takes a lot of work, especially in the beginning. You will need to put in plenty of time and effort before you see significant financial rewards.

As such, it’s important that you enjoy creating your affiliate content. If you work in a niche that you don’t care about, or you resent the work involved, you probably won’t last long.

Many marketers make the mistake of only focusing on how much money they can make. This usually leads to half-baked sites that essentially serve as billboards for other brands, providing little real value to readers. This is the exact opposite of what you want your affiliate blog to become.

The most important thing to remember is that affiliate marketing shouldn’t change how you approach your content. Your greatest asset will always be your own skills, knowledge, and imagination. If you stick with what you’re already good at, affiliate marketing gives you the opportunity to turn your creativity into an honest and lucrative venture.

Conclusion

As a blogger, monetizing your work can be difficult without making compromises. However, implementing affiliate marketing on your blog doesn’t have to mean selling out. In fact, if you do it right, you can be both honest with your audience and make a tidy profit at the same time.

To get started with affiliate marketing in an effective and upfront way, you’ll want to:

  1. Create honest and informative content.
  2. Feature products that you use personally.
  3. Don’t do it just for the money.

Do you have any questions about how to get started with affiliate marketing? Let us know in the comments section below!

How to Test Your Affiliate Royale Program (And Why You Should)

Once you’ve finished setting up a program with Affiliate Royale, you might be itching to launch it right away. However, there may still be unforeseen issues that you’ve missed. Having to deal with these problems when your program is already running can be disastrous to your bottom line.

For this reason, it’s very important to ensure that your program works exactly as you expect before you launch it. This means testing every element and step thoroughly. You need to make sure that nothing is left to chance, in order to have a frictionless launch.

In this article, we’ll show you how to test drive your Affiliate Royale program. Let’s get to work!

Why It’s Important to Test Your Affiliate Royale Program

The Affiliate Royale plugin.

If you’ve used Affiliate Royale to create your own affiliate program, you will doubtless be eager to get it off the ground. However, while we’re sure that you’ve spent a lot of time making sure to configure all aspects of the program correctly, it’s difficult to account for everything that might go wrong.

This is why testing is so important, especially when it comes to affiliate programs. If you don’t thoroughly evaluate your program, you may end up leaving in issues that could cause significant problems once affiliates start using it. For instance, you could find that the wrong commission rates are being applied, or that clicks are not registering properly.

Having to fix these issues later on can disrupt your program, frustrate your affiliates, and cost you both financially and professionally. Thankfully, testing doesn’t have to be complicated. Affiliate Royale makes the process relatively simple, so you can spot and deal with any unexpected issues well in advance of your launch date.

How to Test Your Affiliate Royale Program (In 4 Steps)

Now, let’s look at a simple but effective way that you can test your affiliate program. For this to work, you’ll obviously need to have a program set up using Affiliate Royale first.

As part of this test, you’ll be completing a test purchase to make sure that it registers correctly. We’ll be using a WooCommerce-powered site in our example, but keep in mind that Affiliate Royale also supports a number of other e-commerce platforms.

1. Set Up an Affiliate Link

First of all, you’ll need to create at least one affiliate link (or banner). To do this, access Affiliate Royale > Links & Banners in your admin dashboard:

Creating affiliate links in Affiliate Royale.

If you have no links yet, click on the plus button to add one. You can then enter the URL you want to use:

Adding a new affiliate link.

Once you’ve done that, click on Update Links & Banners to save your link. After that, it’s time to use this link to test your program!

2. Create a Dummy Affiliate Account

In order to test that your program works correctly, you’ll need to create a new user. This will be a dummy account that represents an affiliate, so you’ll want to set the user role to Subscriber:

Creating a new Subscriber account in WordPress.

Since this account is only for your benefit, you can set it up with fake details. You obviously don’t need to send an email notification either. Just remember to save the password!

Once you’ve added this user, sign out of your own admin account, and sign in using the test account. Then navigate to your affiliate dashboard, where you’ll see the link you just created:

An affiliate link as it appears in the Affiliate Royale dashboard.

Copy this link, and then sign out of your dummy account. It’s very important that you do this, as you cannot be logged in to the affiliate account when using the link.

3. Make a Purchase

Once you’ve logged out of all your WordPress accounts, open up a new browser window. Use it to access your site, by pasting the dummy account’s affiliate link into the browser bar.

Next, complete a purchase like normal. Naturally, you won’t need to honor this purchase, so you can use any payment method you want. Remember that if you select Cash on Delivery or a similar option, you’ll need to manually complete the order before it will be recorded properly:

Making a purchase in WooCommerce.

If everything is working so far, you’re on the right track. However, it’s now time to see if the affiliate link recorded the purchase properly.

4. Check to Ensure That the Purchase Was Recorded Correctly

Now, we’re going to see if the affiliate link worked as expected, for both the dummy affiliate and for the admin user (i.e. you). Let’s start with the affiliate, so sign in using your dummy account details once again. Then open your Stats, where you’ll see the amount of clicks and sales your links have accrued.

If everything has gone according to plan, you’ll see your purchase appear next to today’s date:

The stats for an affiliate, showing 2 clicks and 1 purchase.

If it doesn’t show up, the purchase may not have been properly completed. You can check this by signing in with your admin user account and examining the order. However, if it does appear, you’ll know that the link functioned perfectly.

Next up, you need to check to make sure the link is also working for program admins. Log out your affiliate account, and log in using your own credentials. Then, check your Reports to see if the transaction was recorded:

The statistics in Affiliate Royale, showing 2 clicks and 1 purchase.

Again, if the order does not appear, you may need to ensure that the link has been properly configured with the correct target URL. You should also make sure that you were definitely signed out of your accounts when you used the link.

If the report does show the transaction (which it should), then congratulations! Your affiliate program and links are working as expected, and you should be ready to launch.

Conclusion

Once you’ve created your Affiliate Royale program, you still have one step left to take. To avoid frustrating your affiliates and experiencing nasty surprises down the line, you’ll want to spend some time testing your program before launch. That way, you can rest assured that it is performing as you’d expect.

In this guide, we’ve covered the steps necessary to test a program created with Affiliate Royale. You’ll want to:

  1. Set up an affiliate link.
  2. Create a dummy affiliate account.
  3. Make a purchase.
  4. Check to ensure that the purchase was recorded correctly.

Do you have any questions about testing your affiliate program? Let us know in the comments section below!

3 Ways to Find the Right Affiliates to Market Your Products

Once your affiliate program is ready to go, you need to find marketers who will spread the word about your products and services. Since your program stands or falls based on the performance of your affiliates, it’s important that they’re committed, hard-working, and able to leverage their audiences to support you.

Fortunately, finding quality affiliates doesn’t have to be challenging. All you need to do is be proactive, and know how and where to look. Especially if you’ve already settled on a profitable niche and prepared a customer profile, the process can be fairly simple.

In this article, we’ll talk about why finding and attracting the right affiliate marketers is important. We’ll also discuss how you can go about persuading them to join your program. Let’s get started!

What to Look for When Choosing Affiliates for Your Program

Did you know that 5% of affiliates bring in 95% of a program’s income? As such, finding quality affiliates who can pull their weight is a crucial element in running a successful affiliate program.

When looking for affiliates, you should aim to find experienced marketers, preferably those who already have established audiences. They need to be eager to work, and know the ins-and-outs of your industry or niche. This will make it much easier to slot them into your program and see results right away. Plus, it will all but guarantee that they’ll bring quality leads your way. Of course, finding affiliates like this may seem like a tall order – but it’s easier than you might think.

3 Ways to Find the Right Affiliates to Market Your Products

Throughout the next few sections, we’ll look at the best ways of finding ideal affiliates for your program. Bear in mind that this is by no means a comprehensive list, nor should you rely on only a few methods. Instead, consider these techniques a solid starting point for locating potential affiliate marketers, which you can branch out from over time.

1. Reach Out to Niche ‘Tastemakers’

A ‘tastemaker’ is a person with influence within a particular niche. While they could be a celebrity, a tastemaker can also be a regular person with a lot of authority in your industry, or with a large online following. They could even be someone with a well-read review blog, or a popular vlogging channel:

A post made by the Instagram account hudabeauty showing a makeup swatch.

What connects all tastemakers is that their audiences look to them for advice. One such example is Majestic Casual, a curator project that shares music on YouTube:

The Majestic Casual channel on YouTube.

The channel has over 1.5 billion views and nearly 4 million subscribers. The creators have also monetized their content for upwards of $1.2 million, by sharing links to the music they upload.

Working with such a tastemaker is also known as ‘influencer marketing’ and can offer you many benefits. For one, they already have a built-in audience that you can leverage by encouraging them to showcase your products. They can also lend credibility to your products and services, as their audience trusts them to only recommend high-quality items.

Approaching someone with this kind of platform is usually easier than you might expect. Many will already be affiliate marketers, and as such provide easy means of contacting them about potential new partnerships. To get them on board, what’s most important is to ensure that you offer them a good deal. For instance, you can use Affiliate Royale’s commission tiers to encourage them to join your program.

2. Leverage Social Media to Your Advantage

Social media is an invaluable tool for any affiliate program. For one, it’s where you have the chance to really get the word out about your program. If you’ve built up an audience for your business, you probably already have some followers who are invested in your brand, and could be encouraged to join your program right away.

You can also find potential affiliates yourself by searching through hashtags on Twitter and Instagram. Look for users who are already engaging in topics relevant to your business. You can then reach out personally to see if they’d be interested in joining your program. This process also makes it easy for you to vet candidates to make sure they match your requirements, since you can check out their content and online presence in advance.

Another option is to join an affiliate group on Facebook:

a Facebook group called Best Affiliate Marketing Programs.

Bear in mind that you should use these groups organically, and not just go in aiming to promote your own program. This is frowned upon, and will likely get you kicked out. Instead, network honestly and be clear about your goals. This will help you attract affiliates who are truly willing to collaborate.

3. Attend Affiliate Conferences

Last but not least, affiliate conferences are events where both program owners and marketers come to view speakers, take part in various activities, and network. That last aspect makes them a perfect opportunity for you to find willing and experienced affiliates. Plus, these conferences give both you and your potential collaborators the chance to meet face-to-face to create a genuine connection.

Two of the most popular conferences are Affiliate Summit and Affiliate World:

The Affiliate World conference's home page.

However, there are dozens of these events happening all over the world. Once you’ve found one you’d like to attend, the best way to proceed is by treating it as an opportunity to network. Focus on talks and meet-ups where you can chat with people in the same industry and niche. In addition, keep an open mind and be genuine with the people you meet. This will endear you and your program to potential affiliates and partners alike.

Conclusion

Your affiliate program can never have too many marketers. That’s why you shouldn’t get complacent in your search to find new affiliates. By using the right channels, you can ensure that you always have the means to expand your roster of talented affiliates when needed.

In this article, we’ve covered some of the ways you can find new, quality affiliates for your program. While these are certainly not the only methods, they’re a good place to start:

  1. Reach out to niche ‘tastemakers’.
  2. Leverage social media to your advantage.
  3. Attend affiliate conferences.

Do you have any questions about how to find new affiliates marketers for your program? Let us know in the comments section below!

How Small Businesses Can Benefit from Affiliate Marketing

It’s easy to assume that affiliate programs are only useful for big companies and established businesses. However, the truth is that even a smaller company can benefit from getting into affiliate marketing.

As a small business, running your own affiliate program can provide several benefits. For example, it enables you to create cost-effective marketing that helps to grow your audience and build brand awareness. You also have control over the commissions you pay, and can develop a loyal base of affiliates who are excited to work for you.

In this article, we’ll introduce you to the concept of affiliate marketing, and discuss why your small business might need an affiliate program. We’ll also talk about how to get started, with help from our Affiliate Royale plugin. Let’s begin at the top!

An Introduction to Affiliate Marketing

The Amazon Associates affiliate program.

Amazon Associates is one of the biggest and most successful affiliate programs out there.

In case you’re unfamiliar with affiliate marketing, let’s first cover the basics. When your business uses affiliate marketing, it offers a commission to people who are willing to market your products on their own sites. When one of your affiliates successfully refers a lead who ends up making a purchase, that affiliate earns a small percentage of the sale (while you keep the rest).

From your perspective as a business owner, the structure of an affiliate program looks something like this:

  • Affiliate merchant: This is you, the business running the affiliate program.
  • Affiliate network: The tool(s) you use to run the program.
  • Affiliate marketers: The people who are promoting your products or services.
  • Customers: Leads who click on affiliate links and ultimately make purchases.

Affiliate programs have become incredibly popular. They enable businesses to get cheap marketing for their products and expand their reach, while members appreciate the opportunity to make money in a largely passive way. Many large sites offer affiliate opportunities now, with one of the most popular being the Amazon Associates program. There are also plenty of general affiliate programs that bring multiple businesses together in one place, such as Rakuten.

All of this might make it seem like affiliate marketing is a game best suited to the big, established businesses out there. However, it turns out that smaller businesses can get just as much out of this strategy.

How Small Businesses Can Benefit from Affiliate Marketing

As we’ve made clear, affiliate marketing is not just a tool that can help large companies increase their profits. In fact, it can be particularly useful for smaller businesses, for a number of reasons. For example, affiliate marketing programs:

  • Are low-risk and low-cost. You don’t have to spend a lot of money to get the word out about your business. That makes this type of marketing especially helpful for up-and-coming businesses that don’t have a large budget.
  • Boost growth and brand awareness. An affiliate program can help increase traffic and grow your online audience. It’s also a great way to create brand loyalty, as your affiliate marketers will have a vested interest in your success.
  • Put you fully in control. You can set your own commission levels, for instance, and supply whatever marketing materials you want to your affiliates.

While affiliate marketing can be immensely beneficial, it’s not without potential downsides. For example, because you’re relying on people outside your company, you don’t have total say in how your products or services are marketed. It may also take some time and work to oversee the program. However, by using the right tool, you can make the process of controlling and running the program much easier.

How Affiliate Royale Helps You Build an Affiliate Program

The Affiliate Royale plugin.

Affiliate Royale is a WordPress plugin that enables you to create and run an affiliate program directly through your admin dashboard. It slots in perfectly with your existing website, and is compatible with any WordPress theme. This means that your affiliates only need to access your site to get everything they need, and you have complete control over the look and feel of your program.

As a small business, Affiliate Royale makes it easy to run a program with minimal time and effort required. You’ll see exactly how many clicks every affiliate link generates, and how much you need to pay each affiliate at the end of the month (or whatever pay period you set). You can also use this plugin to monitor the performance of your affiliates, and supply them with helpful marketing materials, such as affiliate links and banners.

Some of the key features of Affiliate Royale include:

  • Seamless WordPress integration. The plugin runs straight from your site, and doesn’t require any additional software.
  • A customizable affiliate dashboard. You can set up the dashboard your affiliates will use exactly how you want.
  • Shopping cart functionality. Affiliate Royale is capable of tracking commissions from hundreds of payment gateways and shopping carts.
  • No subscription or recurring fee required. The one-time price means that you won’t have to deal with any unforeseen fees.

Best of all, Affiliate Royale is simple to set up and use. You can use it to create your affiliate program in just minutes. After that, we recommend that you check out our guide on how to generate new affiliate leads, and learn how you can use Affiliate Royale to track your program’s performance.

Conclusion

For a small business, an affiliate program might seem like a big step. However, the truth is that affiliate marketing offers a ton of benefits, and doesn’t have to be as time-consuming as you might expect. It lets you advertise your products or services in a cost-effective manner, driven by affiliate marketers who earn commissions based on how well they perform.

To actually build your affiliate program, you’ll need the right tool for the job. That’s where Affiliate Royale comes in, offering extensive features that make running your program much easier. It enables you to track your affiliates’ performance, provide marketing materials, control your commission tiers, and much more.

Do you have any questions about getting started with affiliate marketing as a small business? Let us know in the comments section below!

How to Create an Affiliate Program Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) Page

As an affiliate program manager, you’ll likely get questions both from existing affiliates and from users curious about your program. While this is a great sign of your business’s growth, it can also be time consuming. You could end up spending more time answering basic questions, and less on growing your business.

By creating an affiliate program Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) page for your website, you make it possible for potential affiliates to find answers for common questions. This frees up your time for other program tasks, such as affiliate recruitment and management. It also makes your program more welcoming and easier to use.

In this post, we’ll discuss three tips for creating a FAQ page for your affiliate program. We’ll then show you how to display this page on your website, including using Affiliate Royale’s Affiliate Pages. Let’s get started!

3 Tips for Creating an Affiliate Program Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) Page

When creating an FAQ for your website, the first step will be to create a new page. Once this is out of the way, it’s time to implement the tips below so your FAQ can be as informative and effective as possible.

1. Separate Your Questions Into Categories

The Avangate affiliates FAQ page

Categories — such as the ones used above on Avangate — make it easy for readers to skim your FAQs.

The first step to creating a FAQ page is to come up with a list of questions to include. These should answer the most common and basic information about your program:

  • Use previous queries. Use questions you’ve received multiple times through email, social media, or other channels.
  • Combine questions where possible. Combine similar phrasings (“How much will I make?/What is the commission rate?”). This makes the list easier for readers to skim and search.

You should also consider using categories to separate the questions. This enables readers to quickly find the information they’re looking for and creates a clean, organized look. A few examples of common categories include Sales and Payments, Products/Services, and Support and Resources.

2. Add a Table Of Contents (TOC) for Easy Navigation

ThinkGeek affiliate FAQ page

A Table Of Contents (TOC) such as used on ThinkGeek makes it easy for readers to jump ahead to their questions.

In short, a Table of Contents (TOC) is an on-page directory that collects all questions at the very top of the page. Adding a TOC simplifies navigation, which makes it easier for affiliates to find the answers they’re looking for. With the right tools and a bit of know-how, you can easily add a TOC to your WordPress FAQ page. Here are two methods you can use:

  1. Use a TOC WordPress plugin. Options such as Easy Table of Contents (free) and Fixed TOC ($19) enables you to add a TOC to a page in minutes.
  2. Use page jumps to create a manual TOC. This requires a small bit of coding, but it gives you a bit more flexibility with styling.

Your TOC doesn’t need to be fancy. It simply needs to be useful in guiding readers to the answers they’re looking for.

3. Link to Further Information When Necessary

The Twitch Affiliate FAQs

Linking out for more information — just as Twitch has done above — provides your readers with more in-depth information.

While the answers within your FAQ page should be thorough, you may find it necessary to provide additional context. This can mean linking to on-site content, and even external tutorials and guides.

This makes it easier for readers to do more research on their own. However, you’ll want to link out effectively so readers click through:

  • Use descriptive anchor text. This ensures your links aren’t overlooked, and readers know exactly what information they’ll receive when clicking through.
  • Link to high-quality websites. This will boost your site’s credibility, and make you more trustworthy to potential affiliates.

To ensure readers remain on your site, you should set all links to open in a new tab. Your readers will still get the information they need, while also sticking around to read more about your program.

How to Display Your FAQ Page Using Affiliate Royale’s Affiliate Pages

The Affiliate Royale plugin.

With your FAQ page now created, it’s time to display it on your site. You can do so with the help of Affiliate Royale and its Affiliate Pages. Affiliate Royale includes a sign-up page, login page, and Affiliate Dashboard.

To display the FAQ page for both potential and established affiliates, you have a few options. First, the affiliate FAQ page should be included in your site’s navigation menu. You can place it prominently within the main menu, or include it as a link in your footer:

An example of a footer menu with a link to the FAQ page

Second, you can add the link to the FAQ page directly to the Affiliate Dashboard. Go to Affiliate Royale > Options > Dashboard and click Add page next to Custom Nav Pages. You can then select your FAQ page from the dropdown:

This way, all established affiliates can gain instant access when logged into their dashboard.

Conclusion

As your affiliate program grows, you’ll receive more questions from potential affiliates. However, if you don’t have a dedicated FAQ page, you could lose time answering the same questions over and over. Fortunately, creating a FAQ page is easy and will be beneficial for you, your program, and your affiliates.

In this post, we’ve introduced three tips for creating an affiliate program FAQ page. We’ve also shared how you can incorporate this page into your website’s Affiliate Pages using Affiliate Royale. Before you create your FAQ, bear the following in mind:

  1. Separate your questions into categories
  2. Add a Table Of Contents (TOC) for easy navigation.
  3. Link out to further information when necessary.

Do you have any questions about creating a FAQ page, or how Affiliate Royale can help? Let us know in the comments section below!

How to Set Up an Affiliate Program for Your E-Commerce Website

While you’ve built your e-commerce website with the greatest of aspirations in mind, marketing your site could be a lot more difficult than you thought. If you have little to no brand connections and difficulty establishing yourself, your profits will suffer.

However, you can reinvigorate your e-commerce business with the addition of an affiliate program. This is a type of arrangement between your business and external affiliates, who get a reward for each referral for your site. The increased interest in your products will improve your profits and be great for your business’s credibility and ultimate success.

In this post, we’ll discuss how creating an affiliate program can increase the profits of your e-commerce site. We’ll then share three tips for setting up your program successfully, including with the help of Affiliate Royale. Let’s get started!

Why You Should Consider Creating an Affiliate Program

Marucci e-commerce website homepage

Any e-commerce website can benefit from an affiliate program.

An affiliate program is an arrangement between your business and independent affiliates. These affiliates promote your products or services to their own audiences. As a result, they receive a cut of any profits you earn based on their referrals.

There are various benefits to setting up an affiliate program for your e-commerce site. They include:

With a team of affiliates on your side, you also have less work to do on your end. You’ll still need to keep up with your marketing tasks, but you’ll have others chipping in too.

How to Set Up an Affiliate Program for Your E-Commerce Website (3 Tips)

To set up an effective affiliate program, you’ll need the help of an affiliate management WordPress plugin. We recommend our own Affiliate Royale. With the plugin installed and activated on your website, you can create an all-in-one program for your e-commerce website. Let’s take a closer look at the  details involved in creating a successful program.

1. Build a Landing Page for Affiliate Signups

The Wishpond affiliate landing page

An affiliate landing page – such as the one on Wishpond – is a great place for affiliates to learn about your program.

When potential affiliates come to your website, you want them to know exactly where to go and what to do. That’s the purpose of an affiliate landing page. By adding one to your website, you can increase conversions (i.e. affiliate signups). It also provides necessary information, so you don’t spend all of your time answering query emails.

Using Affiliate Royale, you can easily create an affiliate landing page in minutes. You can choose to create your own page using the WordPress back end, or have Affiliate Royale automatically create one for you.

The Affiliate Royale Affiliate Pages options

All you have to do is go to Affiliate Royale > Options > Pages. Select the checkbox next to Signup Page, and either choose the page you’ve created yourself, or keep it as Auto Create New Page. You can then customize it as you’d like by clicking Edit next to the Signup Page option.

2. Create an Affiliate Resource Hub

iTunes affiliate resource hub

Many successful affiliate programs – including iTunes – utilizes a resource hub.

The affiliate resource hub is just what it sounds like – a page that contains resources helpful to your affiliates. This is a smart addition to any affiliate website, as it provides your affiliates with the tools they need to succeed. Remember that the better your affiliate performs, the greater the positive impact on your business.

Similarly to the affiliate landing page, Affiliate Royale can be used to ‘host’ your resource hub. You’ll first need to create your Affiliate Dashboard by going to Affiliate Royale > Options > Pages.

The Affiliate Royale Affiliate Dashboard

Now, navigate to Affiliate Royale > Options > Dashboard. Here you can tailor the welcome message your affiliates see, and create additional navigation pages. You’ll need to create the resource page on your own from the WordPress dashboard. You can then simply add it to the Custom Nav Pages shown on the Affiliate Dashboard.

3. Find Affiliate Recruits Among Previous Customers

A customer purchase receipt email

Looking through your customer purchase receipts are a great place to find your first leads.

One of the most difficult aspects of creating an affiliate program is recruitment. However, you may be able to find recruits among previous customers. As you already have a relationship established, this can save you time and hassle.

To make the task even easier, you’ll want to sweeten the deal for your potential recruits. Here are a few tips to help you do so:

  • Offer an incentive. For example, a discount on their next purchase or cash bonus.
  • Make it easy. To increase the number of recruit signups, make it easy for customers to share with their contacts. For example, create a banner they can share across their social media platforms.

Of course, you need to find an effective manner of finding them, and reaching out. You can do so via a newsletter or social media campaigns, and even collect email addresses from previous purchase receipts.

Conclusion

If your e-commerce website isn’t as successful as you’d hoped, you may be discouraged. However, the addition of an affiliate program can be a good way to increase your profits. Its various benefits, such as an increased exposure and brand credibility, will add much to your e-commerce site, but it will also provide you a source of income all its own.

In this post, we’ve discussed why you might want to create an affiliate program for your e-commerce business. We’ve also shared three tips for doing so effectively. They include:

  1. Build a landing page for affiliate signups.
  2. Create an affiliate resource hub.
  3. Find affiliate recruits among previous customers.

Do you have any questions about creating an effective affiliate program, or how Affiliate Royale can help? Let us know in the comments section below!

3 Features Your Affiliate Management Plugin Needs

Creating and running an effective affiliate program takes a lot of effort. It requires countless hours of maintenance and management, and this is especially difficult without the help of a designated tool. However, choosing which one to use can be difficult.

By choosing the right tool – a WordPress plugin that contains all the features you need – you can ensure you’re running your program as efficiently as possible. In turn, this will benefit your business’ conversion rates and bottom line.

In this post, we’ll highlight three features you should look for in an affiliate management plugin. We’ll then outline how Affiliate Royale checks all of those boxes, and how you can start using it immediately. Let’s get started!

3 Features Your Affiliate Management Plugin Needs

With so many plugins available, it can be difficult to find the right one. To help you narrow your search, let’s look at three features your affiliate management plugin needs.

1. Multiple Payment Integration Options

Affiliate Royale's Payment Integration Options

Popular payment integrations include PayPal and Shopp. However, there are many more to choose from.

In a nutshell, the more payment options you accept, the greater the choice for your customers. By offering multiple options, you make it easier for as many users as possible to make payments with ease. PayPal is usually the go-to option, although e-commerce solutions such as Shopp and Cart66 also have payment options integrated. Choosing an affiliate management plugin that offers multiple payment integration options, therefore, is key.

Of course, it’s also important to choose a plugin that makes the integration process easy. For example, any plugin you consider should provide a list of supported and recommended payment integrations. You may be able to use others not listed, but supported ones are typically easier to add to your website.

Even with many options, it’s important to know which ones are best for your audience. This ensures you integrate the most relevant payment methods onto your website, which is beneficial for your business’s profits.

2. A Full-Featured Affiliate Dashboard

The Affiliate Royale Affiliate Dashboard

As the main program gateway for your affiliates, the Affiliate Dashboard is a crucial program management tool.

An affiliate dashboard is your main point of contact with your affiliates, so it should contain everything you both need to communicate with each other. This includes contact information, and even links to useful program information (such as links and banners, which we’ll discuss below).

You should also choose a plugin that enables you to customize the dashboard – adding your own links to the Navigation menu and setting a personalized welcome message, for example. This ensures you’re able to provide exactly what your affiliates need, and you aren’t ‘locked in’ to a particular set up. After all, you may find that your communication style (and, therefore, dashboard needs) change as your program grows.

3. A Links and Banners Creation Tool

The Affiliate Royale Links and Banner creation tool

With the right tool, you can create unique links and banner advertisements for each affiliate.

A links and banner creation tool simply enables you to create affiliate-specific links and ads. You’ll be able to personalize the link and advertisement for each affiliate automatically, so they get credit for sales.

When used correctly, this feature enables you to streamline the way you usually create links and banners. You can create them with just a few clicks, and your affiliates don’t have to perform the process themselves, leaving them more time to bring in new custom and income.

In addition, you’ll also want to consider how you’ll share these links and banners with your affiliates. For example, you could do so on the Affiliate Dashboard or within an affiliate newsletter. You’ll want to consider plugins that make the sharing process simple. This will increase the number of affiliates who actually use them on their own websites.

Why Affiliate Royale Is the Ideal Choice for Your Program

The Affiliate Royale plugin.

The features we’ve listed here will ensure that your program runs smoothly, and have full control over managing your affiliates. There are various dedicated affiliate management plugins available, but you won’t find the above essential features in all of them. One plugin that contains all of these features and more is Affiliate Royale.

Once you’ve purchased a plan, then downloaded and installed the plugin on your website, you’ll have access to a wealth of features to help you manage your affiliates and site. For example, you can implement all of the above key elements – multiple payment integration options, a customizable Affiliate Dashboard, and a Links and Banner creation tool – to enable you to run your program more efficiently and communicate better with your affiliates. In turn, this will potentially boost your traffic, conversions, and income.

Conclusion

Choosing the best tool for affiliate management will make it easier to run your program successfully. It will enable you to focus on other aspects of your business – including content creation and affiliate recruitment – and in some cases offer some self-sufficiency to your affiliate ranks.

In this post, we’ve outlined three features you should look for in an affiliate management tool. Let’s recap them quickly:

  1. Multiple payment integration options.
  2. A full-featured Affiliate Dashboard.
  3. A Links and Banners creation tool.

Do you have any questions about affiliate management features, or Affiliate Royale? Let us know in the comments section below!

3 Tips for Nurturing (And Converting) Your Affiliate Marketing Leads

As an affiliate marketer, it’s your job to not only attract leads, but also to nurture and convert them. This can seem daunting, but without these efforts, you could be missing out on crucial sales opportunities. After all, 96% of visitors aren’t ready to buy just yet.

Fortunately, nurturing and converting your leads doesn’t need to be painful. In fact, many sales tactics – including email marketing and targeted content – can be incorporated into your current sales campaign with little effort.

In this post, we’ll discuss lead nurturing and why you need to do it if you want your affiliate business to succeed. We’ll then share three tips for nurturing and converting your leads. Let’s get started!

What Lead Nurturing Is (And Why You Need To Do It)

Sales leads are simply consumers deciding whether or not to buy your product or service. Lead nurturing is when you encourage those prospects to make a purchase, while also offering a solution to their problem.

Although attracting leads is a major part of affiliate sales, nurturing them is just as important. By neglecting this aspect, you’re actually ignoring a major part of your business. Lead nurturing also enables you to:

  • Turn lukewarm visitors into hot sales leads.
  • Stand out against your competitors.
  • Help potential customers with their needs.

All of these elements lead to conversions. However, by providing genuine assistance, you make your product the only sensible option. This is why it’s so critical to your affiliate program and your business.

3 Tips for Nurturing (And Converting) Your Affiliate Marketing Leads

After all of that, you’re probably wondering how you should nurture your leads. No worries! We have a few tips that can help you turn more leads into customers. Let’s start with your content.

1. Create Targeted Content to Engage Your Readers

a comprehensive guide from Sprout Social

Comprehensive guides – like this one from Sprout Social – are an in-depth way to target your readers.

Just as it sounds, targeted content is tailored to your specific audience. This is a great way to nurture and convert leads, as it speaks to your audience’s specific desires, and encourages them to continuously return to your website.

There are many elements involved in creating targeted content, but getting started can sometimes be the hardest part. Here’s how:

  1. Understand your audience (and their needs). It helps if you create audience personas, then target their specific needs. This essentially puts a face to your consumers.
  2. Know what keywords are most popular and use them. With keyword tools, such as Google Keyword Planner, you can learn more about what your audience is searching for and create content for them.

As your visitors begin to interact with your content, you can then look to their interactions for more content ideas. For example, you can expand upon a popular post or turn a comment or question into a post of its own (sites like Quora are perfect for finding questions to answer for your audience).

2. Perform Timely Follow-Ups to Establish Communication

A welcome email from Toby

Welcome emails – like this one from Toby – are a popular follow-up email format.

A follow-up is a quick email to potential leads after they perform a task (such as signing up for your email list, or adding a product to their cart). It can be used to establish communication, but it also helps readers remember you. Both are important if you hope to convert your leads to sales in the future.

More important than performing follow-ups is how you perform them. If you’re new to the concept, getting it right can seem tricky. Try these tips:

  • Follow-up quickly. You may be surprised to learn that the sooner you follow up, the better. In fact, responding within an hour can lead to seven times the conversions!
  • Include value in your follow-up. Offer actionable advice, or share something you think will help the audience (for example, an upcoming webinar or recent article).

Your leads know you want to sell to them, so don’t be afraid to spend a bit of time in the follow-up boasting about your product. Just don’t make it your main focus. Instead, focus on improving their experience, and ensuring they have everything they need to make an informed decision.

3. Customize Visitor Interactions to Increase Trust

A popup on Aeropostale's website

Popups are one of the most effective ways to customize your user interactions.

The way visitors engage with your website is a great indicator of their intentions. So, it’s important to customize interactions if you want to make conversion more likely. A personalized experience can increase consumer trust, which can boost conversions.

By creating the audience personas or answering a specific product question as outlined previously, you already have a good idea of what your visitors are looking for. You can use this information to customize their entire experience. For instance, you can:

  • Use pop-ups. Pop-ups can be personalized based on visitor behavior. For example, you can offer up content related to previously-viewed posts, or offer deals based on viewed products.
  • Add a live chat feature. This enables visitors to ask for personalized help, which may make them more likely to buy.

Ultimately, every part of your website should be customized to fit your target audience’s needs. This makes for a more genuine experience for them and an easier conversion process for you. The trick is to make sure you are aware of what your audience needs.

Conclusion

While attracting leads to your affiliate website is important, nurturing and converting those prospects affect your bottom line. Fortunately, there are many ways you can incorporate lead nurturing by taking small steps to understand your audience.

In this post, we’ve introduced you to lead nurturing. We’ve also outlined three ways to use this method to increase conversions. These include:

  1. Create targeted content to engage your readers.
  2. Perform timely follow-ups to establish communication.
  3. Customize visitors interactions to increase trust.

Do you have any questions about lead nurturing, or how you can use it on your affiliate website? Let us know in the comments section below!

Using Pretty Links With Affiliate Royale: A Beginner’s Guide

As an affiliate manager, focusing on program management and its associated tasks is usually a priority. However, even with a tool as complete as Affiliate Royale, you may find yourself lacking certain features. One of them is link optimization, which you can achieve with Pretty Links.

Pretty Links is a link shortening plugin that enables you to expertly optimize your website links. When used alongside Affiliate Royale, you can more effectively run your program and boost your sales.

In this post, we’ll introduce you to Pretty Links. We’ll then show you a few ways to use Pretty Links and Affiliate Royale together, and how your website and program will benefit from doing so. Let’s get started!

An Introduction to Pretty Links

The Pretty Links plugin

As we discussed, Pretty Links is a link management plugin that enables you to create shortened, branded links. These can be used on your affiliate program website, as well as by your affiliates. This is an invaluable tool, as links can tell you plenty about your affiliate campaigns – including Click-Through Rates (CTRs) and conversions.

There are many benefits to using shortened links in your affiliate campaigns alongside Affiliate Royale. For example, they can:

  • Boost awareness by incorporating your brand into the URL.
  • Make it more likely for users to click, as they’re ‘cleaner’ and prettier.
  • Make it easier for visitors to share them on different platforms.

Because Pretty Links and Affiliate Royale are a part of the same family, they can also work seamlessly together. With both plugins installed on your affiliate site, you can increase your program’s brand awareness, as well as its success.

3 Ways to Use Pretty Links With Affiliate Royale

Let’s take a closer look at ways you can use Pretty Links to optimize your affiliate links. With this knowledge, you can then use such links throughout your program and affiliate campaign.

1. Brand Your Affiliate Links for Increased Credibility

A branded link as seen on Twitter

With branded links, you can include your website name to expand your reach.

Branded links are simply those that contain your brand (i.e. your website name) and an optimized slug. These enable you to easily spread your brand, which can increase interactions with your target audience.

This is important for you as an affiliate manager, because increased interactions can boost your conversions. These links are also something you can easily add to your program, both through your Affiliate Dashboard (which you created with Affiliate Royale) and resource hub.

Branding your affiliate links is simple with Pretty Links. Once the plugin is installed, head to Pretty Links > Add New Link within WordPress. Here, you’ll have three required fields to set – Redirection, Target URL, and Pretty Links:

Add a Pretty Link

There are also plenty of Advanced and Pro Options to choose from. These include the options to track links, ‘nofollow’ them, and set an expiry date (for special deals or offers). Simply add your newly branded links to your Affiliate Dashboard and resource hub to share them.

2. Implement A/B Testing to Track (And Improve) Affiliate Sales

The set up for Pretty Links split testing

A/B testing is a marketing technique that enables you to better understand how different elements of your website work. For links, you can see which placements work and find ways to improve their CTRs.

To set up A/B testing, go to Pretty Links > Pretty Links. Locate the link you’d like to A/B test, and click Edit underneath. On the edit page, go to Pro Options > Dynamic Redirection and choose Rotation:

Rotation option for dynamic redirection

Here you’ll add two or more target URLs, as well as select their ‘weights’. This determines how often each is displayed during testing. Enable Split Testing, and enter your Goal Link. This is the landing page you’d like users to see from your selected Target URLs above.

Once the links have been in use for awhile, you can check out the results of your testing. Go to Pretty Links > Pretty Links and click Split Test Report for the specific link you’ve been testing. This will show you how each Target URL has performed, so you and your affiliates can make better decisions about how to use your links.

3. Track Visitor Conversions to Improve User Experience

A Pretty Links conversion report

Use conversion reports to tweak your affiliate campaigns and convert more visitors.

Visitor conversions tell you how often your leads are converting (either purchasing, or completing another wanted task) on your website. When you understand your visitors’ behaviors, you can better target them and their needs. You can also use what you learn to personalize future interactions.

Start by setting up conversion reports in Pretty Links. Go to Pretty Links > Pro Reports. Click Add Report, and select your Links to Analyze and Goal Link. You can think of the former as the pages you use to send visitors to the final conversion page (the latter):

Pretty Links Add Report

Name your report, and then click Create. Once they’ve had enough time to collect data, you can then access the reports by clicking View on the Pro Reports page. To better provide your affiliates with an understanding of their links success, share these findings on your Affiliate Dashboard, or include them in a monthly newsletter.

Conclusion

Links are a critical element for any affiliate marketer. While Affiliate Royale doesn’t offer link optimization tools, it does work seamlessly with Pretty Links. By using these plugins together, you can improve your program’s success.

In this post, we’ve outlined three ways to use Pretty Links and Affiliate Royale together. To quickly recap, they include:

  1. Brand your affiliate links for increased credibility.
  2. Implement A/B testing to track (and improve) sales.
  3. Track visitor conversions to improve user experience.

Do you have any questions about Pretty Links, or how to use it together with Affiliate Royale? Let us know in the comments section below!