Improving affiliate marketing efficiency

By Paul Skeldon November 18, 2017 - 9:24 am

Whether you’re a high street retailer, an ecommerce site or both there are measures to consider before you invest in affiliate marketing.

You could acquire the best affiliates, have the most engaging ads and content but if your website and checkout process is lacking, you’ll never receive a return. This not only frustrates you as you see money going down the drain it also frustrates your affiliates as ultimately they have nothing to gain from promoting your brand.

Econsultancy recently published a report that showed why people abandon their baskets before checkout.

The main reasons are:

  • Usability of site (not quick enough)
  • Navigation of site
  • Information disparities such as price offered in ad different to price on site ( VAT added or delivery charges)
  • Unclear site copy and product descriptions
  • Information not easy to find
  • Bad design and presentation
  • Page load times
  • Lack of a search feature
  • Bugs and broken links

Understanding why people abandon their baskets is crucial to stopping it happening. Often retailers are too close to the product and fail to get an impartial overview from a user’s point of view. Luckily free analytic tools can show you the exact pages that put shoppers off and how long it took before they decided not to buy.

This data combined with some of your own research will ensure your website is capable of converting sales.

Signing up

One of the biggest reasons shoppers abandon baskets is because they have to enter many details before completing checkout. This can be time consuming and if they are using a smartphone, it can be clumsy at best.

Some retailers ask for membership before products can be shipped which eliminates the problem the next time but can add another deterrent initially. You need to assess which method is right for you.

Your competition

Your competition are the key to your success, as they are already succeeding serving the customers you want! There are many reasons to assess you competition a little more deeply to enhance your affiliate program including:

See where they succeed:

  • Find out the commissions they offer
  • See what you can do differently
  • Steal their top performing affiliates
  • Find out what they don’t offer so you can!

Understand your website performance

To operate an effective affiliate marketing campaign you need to have in-depth knowledge of every aspect of your current performance.

This includes:

  • Social Media- How many leads it generates, how many people engage, who shares, when they share
  • Bounce Rates – Why do people click away, what makes them click away, are you happy with your bounce rates or could you engage more
  • Demographic – What is your target market, who uses your website, where do they come from?
  • Conversions – how many people complete a sale on visiting, what prompts some to leave?
  • Links – Who currently links to your website, are any of these considered spam. Are they great links, could they be used as affiliates?
  • Content – What content offers the most engagement, what positive increases in traffic have you seen when changing or updating content, what negative impacts has content had?

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