Affiliate programs allow bloggers/publishers to earn a commission from any sales they send to your company.
Basically, you give each affiliate a unique link to your website/checkout, which tracks where the source of the sale.
If someone converts, you give them a cut of the purchase price (e.g. 50%).
They can usually track this via some sort of online dashboard:
In order to drive traffic to your website, affiliates will have to link to you (using their custom link), which builds links for you in the process.
Here’s the process:
- Create an affiliate program
- Promote it to bloggers
There are a few options when it comes to creating an affiliate program: you can create one from scratch, or use a marketplace (such as Clickbank):
Obviously, the simplest solution is to use a marketplace such as Clickbank.
But, sites like Clickbank actually create links with a redirect, meaning that rather than going straight to your site, they’ll be redirected via the marketplace (i.e. Clickbank) domain.
Therefore, you won’t actually gain any direct links.
You’ll need to use a third-party solution (e.g. Omnistar) if you want the links for yourself:
When you have your affiliate program set up, you’ll need to promote it to relevant bloggers who may be interested in promoting your product(s)/service(s).
The simplest way to do this is to find bloggers who are already promoting similar things.
Make a list of competing products (or at least similar products) who you know have an affiliate program, then search Google for:
You should see a tonne of reviews in the search results.
Visit each of these sites individually and check if they’re linking out to the retailers site using an affiliate link – if they are, they’re likely a good prospect to promote your affiliate program to.
Search their site for their contact details, then note down their site + contact information in a spreadsheet.
Keep doing this until you have a list.
Next, reach out to them using this template:
I’m [YOUR NAME], [POSITION] at [WEBSITE].
I was just reading one of your posts and noticed you’re a member of [COMPANY NAME]’s affiliate program.
We actually have a similar programme and we were wondering if you might be interested in joining?
Let me know if you are, and I can send you all the details on payouts and whatnot.
Note: According to Google’s TOS, affiliate links should be “nofollowed”, so make sure to get the blogger(s) to add the “nofollow” tag to any outbound links.