Getting Affiliate Marketing right is one of the huge things Content creators fail at. This is especially common to beginners who have to adapt to the new environment.
Before seeing success in Affiliate Marketing. One must have failed at some points, learned some lessons, and restructured their way of approach.
For someone who just joined an Affiliate Marketplace for the first time, the mentality of spreading links here and there to earn money is the first to develop.
While Affiliate Marketing is one of the best ways to make money as you sleep, it doesn’t happen overnight and it takes some best practices, hard work, and consistency.
A study has shown that around 95% of Affiliate marketers fail due to not following the best practices.
Regardless of the low conversion rate on your website, there is room for improvement.
Statistics show that a simple tweak in the button color or location can greatly increase the rate of conversions. The use of interactive media like Product displays and comparison Tables can also.
Let’s go ahead and elaborate more on how you can become a successful Affiliate in the digital marketing industry.
11 Affiliate Marketing Best Practices and Helpful Tips
1. Join the right Platform
Joining the right Affiliate Platform is the first step to getting it the right way. While joining a program, ensure that it aligns with your website’s content in such a way that any promotion you share matches up with the users’ needs.
Also note that Affiliate Platforms use different tracking systems which might not favor some traffic sources. From my experience, I noticed that the Flexoffers network converts the most for social traffic, unlike the likes of CJ Affiliate, Rakuten, ShareAsale, etc.
Can you guess the reason behind this? – It’s the nature of their tracking system and most of them frown at Social traffic.
To balance the discrepancy with Affiliate Platforms in this idea, I tried to join as many networks as I could, and to use the best possible one depending on the source of traffic. For instance, I use Flexoffers’ links on social media and then CJ Affiliate, ShareAsale, Rakuten, etc on my website.
Don’t put this down – Your commission rate for a particular Advertiser can differ depending on the Affiliate Platform you’re using. Naturally, in-house Affiliate Programs give the best rate, and you can easily find them on the brand’s website.
Now, Affiliate Networks like CJ Affiliate, ShareAsale and so on pay less for the same conversion. However, they are mostly good to people who want to reach the threshold for withdrawal as soon as possible.
Needless to say, these platforms typically have thresholds ranging from $25 – $50 whereas the Inbuilt Platforms have theirs’ resting at $100 and above.
Your choice to promote an Advertiser from its in-house platform vs. using an Affiliate Network, where you can also connect with other advertisers depends on your needs.
Therefore, consider your preferences and use Affiliate Links from platforms that matter to you the most.
Another thing to keep in mind is that – while we recommend Flexoffers for social traffic, it typically does not offer a reasonable commission rate, unlike others. However, being active in the platform can help you with some things and their rate can sometimes be bigger.
2. Explore the Affiliate Agreement
Exploring partnership agreements is one of the best practices in Affiliate Marketing.
In Affiliate Marketing, you want to earn the best commission possible, and to ensure you’re at it; you should consider things like Commission rate, Cookie Duration, Hold-Period and whatnot
Getting to know them helps you promote an Advertiser from the right Affiliate Platform (because they don’t have the same rate). It also helps you prioritize Advertisers offering competitive rates.
If you can find an Advertiser or an Affiliate Network that offers Recurring commission, then better! Recurring or residual commission ensures Affiliates keep getting paid beyond their first-time refer.
That means you’ll still be receiving settlement as long as the referral keeps subscribing.
3. Link as much as possible with Deep linking
Converting leads doesn’t happen overnight. It comes from different stages, of which getting users to hit on the Affiliate Links is no exception.
In the world of Affiliate Marketing, the first aim is to earn click-throughs to the Advertiser’s homepage, and you can better your chances of achieving that with deep-linking.
Deep Linking lets you create personalized links anywhere to the Advertiser’s website (think to a specific blog post, documentation, a FAQ page, etc). Rather than pointing to the Advertiser’s homepage every now & then, with deep links, we achieve vast opportunities for Affiliate Links on our website.
We highly recommend using deep linking whenever possible to increase the likelihood of CTRs.
Also, note that the availability of deep linking will depend on the Advertiser’s or Affiliate Platform concerned. So you should consider both options when doing your review.
4. Follow the right SEO Link attributes
Do you know that most Affiliates don’t get the SEO perspective of Affiliate Marketing right? Google has dropped recommendations regarding which Link attributes to use for Affiliate and money Links.
You typically don’t use the Dofollow attribute which passes link juice to the destination website. Google recommends using the Nofollow & Sponsored attribute to get its bot to understand the purpose of the Link.
The Nofollow attribute tells Google and other search engines to desist from passing Link authority to the Advertiser’s website. The Sponsored Attribute in the same vein lets search engine bots mark Links as affiliated or sponsored.
If you can hearken to these recommendations. Then you give yourself fewer chances of getting demoted or even being flagged as spam.
5. Use Call-to-action where applicable
Ticking all the Affiliate Marketing best practices ensure you become successful in Affiliate Marketing.
Call-to-action or CTAs are simply buttons, pop-ups, etc that tend to attract customer’s attention more than other elements of a site.
Using CTAs strategically will increase the odds of Click-throughs. We suggest using button links wherever applicable.
Popups should also be considered because they make the most impact. You can set it to open at the middle or end of your article.
Ensure you don’t overdo it because popups impact Core Web vitals, a website speed metric system negatively.
Lest we forget, the colors in use for the CTAs also matter. According to widespread discoveries, Red performs better than most colors. So you should consider it if it doesn’t contradict your brand.
6. Insert Links in Images
Getting the visitor to hit the affiliate link before leaving the page is part of the strategy.
The Links you attach to Texts, and CTAs won’t be enough in this regard. If possible, add links to the images so that users can be directed to the Advertiser’s website at the Click.
I often point to the Advertiser’s website from the Pricing Image and I use a caption like “Current Pricing as of that date, click the image to view latest pricing information”. This prompt gives the visitor a sense of curiosity between what is currently on my website and the information on the Advertiser’s website.
So starting today, enlist the “Insert Links into images” into your Affiliate Marketing best practices.
7. Use Affiliate Link Shorteners/Cloaking
AnAffiliate Link shortener is used to obtain a nice-looking, short-in-length, and readable version of a money Link. It converts the long assortments of letters and symbols found in affiliate links into simpler and understandable URLs.
The time has gone when successful Affiliates still use Raw Affiliate Links as they are being collected from the Affiliate Platform.
Raw Affiliate Links are naturally ugly and spammy in look, making them quite difficult to complete a business goal.
As for shortened and cloaked links, they are prettier versions and they undoubtedly bring more engagement.
There are many benefits of using Affiliate Link shorteners and cloaks. One of which is to protect the spam score of a website and to safeguard it from hooligans.
You read that right? Nowadays, Fraudsters engage in Affiliate ID replacement and if it happens you’re still using one, you might get hit anytime.
For Affiliate Link shortening and cloaking, we highly recommend the Pretty Links WordPress Plugin because of its award-winning features and affordable pricing.
8. Use Product Displays, Comparison Tables & other special CTAs
Just like the regular Call-to-action(s) we discussed above, the advanced part of it is here and the game is still shouting – higher CTRs (Click-throughs)!
If you’re using buttons, popups, and other regular CTAs, good! But if you incorporate it with advanced ones’ like the rich Product Display boxes and Comparison Tables, then better!
Product Displays, Comparison Tables, Versus Boxes, and all the rest perform better than just Buttons and Popups and they make a site look professional.
By using Product Displays, you put your visitors into an irresistible magnetic system that attracts higher Click-through rates. Also, when you adopt a Comparison Table on your site, you ease the whole process of decision-making which means faster commitment.
That said, rich media like the Comparison Table is one of the things to include in your Affiliate Marketing best practices.
We highly recommend the Affiliatable WordPress Plugin for this. The Plugin offers Comparison Tables, Product Displays, Versus boxes, Rating Boxes, and you name them.
You may want to check our list of the best WordPress Affiliate Marketing Plugins.
9. Always leave a Disclosure and Why Trust Us Info
If you have not been hit before, brace for the impact because it might be your turn tomorrow.
Affiliate Disclosure has been a mandatory thing to have in place as an Affiliate Marketer. The Why Trust Us Info isn’t mandatory but it adds to the point.
Not using an Affiliate Disclosure on your Affiliate site can sign you up for a penalty, especially from the Federal Trade Commission, an independent agency of the United States government.
Outside putting you on the safe side, the presence of Affiliate Disclosure makes a site more honest in its dealings, and just with that, Visitor awareness & trust are built.
You should have a kind of summarized version of the Disclosure on each article that contains an Affiliate Link. The full Disclosure should be a detailed page and it should address important partnership knowledge.
You should also consider using the Why Trust Us Page especially if you have authority on the subject.
10. Collect Email subscribers for Retargeting
The importance of Email Marketing can’t be overemphasized.
If you’re yet to know – the regular human behavior states that a Person will likely not purchase the Product concerned after they have seen, reviewed, or tested it. They have to face additional hits and considerations before finally deciding.
This is where using Email Marketing for Retargeting becomes critically important. To better understand this, let’s consider the case of Jane who runs a Fashion website.
Jane’s first approach is to earn visibility. She knew that Visibility doesn’t equate to Conversion.
Having this idea of the zigzag nature of human behavior, Jane integrated an Email subscription form into her website. From that, she does the re-targeting job and this helps strengthen the zigzag nature of human behavior.
Indeed, using Email Marketing for re-targeting helps visitors to convert. We highly recommend GetResponse in this regard, it’s a software with high-level Email Marketing in mind.
11. Be honest & don’t engage in overhyping
Had it been that we completed this Affiliate Marketing best practices, and failed to include this, the other 10 points would’ve been in vain.
While you go out there to promote your affiliate links, ensure you maintain a solid state of integrity.
Refrain from overhyping one product over another in the unhonest way. Don’t judge Product rankings by their commission rate.
Instead, be as clear as possible and approach the judgment candidly. By doing so, you’re saving the reputation of your website and visitors can mark you as a reliable source without thinking twice.
A Recap on Affiliate Marketing Best Practices – Becoming a Successful Affiliate
Becoming a successful Affiliate Marketer demands a lot of things which we have explored deeply in the article.
It’s not always about becoming successful in Affiliate Marketing, the idea of making the best while doing it, also counts.
To better the chances of making conversions, Content creators should join Affiliate Programs that matter the most for their business. They should also look out for competitive rates as Affiliate Agreements differ.
Getting Clicks precedes making Conversions. For this reason, Content publishers should embrace all possible opportunities that could get visitors to hit their Affiliate Links.
We discussed how using CTAs (like Buttons and pop-ups) can help. We also touched rich medias such as Comparison Tables & Product Displays and how critical they are to business goals.
We made it more palatable by introducing Affiliate Link shortening and Cloaking into the game. As mentioned above, Link Cloaking/Shorteners are the ultimate reason why your URLs will get more engagement.
We also explored how using deep linking and image links can help boost click-through rates.
Email marketing as a retargeting system is critically important for conversions. For this reason, upcoming Affiliate rockstars should adopt it for Email collections.
We secured a conclusion with Affiliate Disclosure Pages and Why Trust Us Info, which plays an important role in trust, website honesty, and reliability.
Finally, we addressed the gallops that an incentive can cause and we caution readers to be honest when recommending Affiliate offers.
We hope these Best Practices are enough to pronounce you successful in Affiliate Marketing.
To your success!
You could check out our collection for the best affiliate plugins. It matters a lot.