Put simply, affiliate marketing is performance-based marketing in which one business rewards another for driving visitors (through various marketing efforts) to buy its product. The core players are the ‘brand’, the ‘affiliate'(you) and the customer. There is also the potential for a fourth player known as a super-affiliate, they act as an agent and manage several affiliates.
While affiliate marketing might not earn you enough to quit your day job, it can earn you additional revenue with very little on-going effort. If you have an engaged and active digital audience, simply introducing them to products they may be interested in (via trackable links and unique discount codes) is an easy way to boost revenue. You need to make sure you don’t ‘sell out’ too much. Curating products tailored to your audience is key. You can’t just stick in links and hope for the best. There is a small amount of craft but once setup there is little else to do other than earn revenue and provide an enhanced service offering to you customers.
If you’re new to affiliate marketing then this article will act as a beginners’ guide. If you’re already acting as an affiliate, a few simple tweaks to how you market products can really help make affiliate marketing work harder for you. Here are our top tips to help:
Make sure you display it-online
Website visibility is key, so ensure yours is up-to-date and the information is easy to find. Most brands offer a wealth of web assets for you to choose the banners that best fit your website. If the brand doesn’t have something appropriate ask them for what you want. There are usually a variety of appropriate places to have tracking links. They can be more obvious link advertising banners. Another way is to put text links in educational info such as a guide or FAQ.
Remember your unique tracked URL link is an important way of generating commission. Even if a customer doesn’t purchase the first time they click through, using your unique tracking URL will add a cookie to the customer’s browser and track sales at a later date (up to 30 days typically). If a customer makes their way to the brand’s website via yours, using the tracking URL, the brand will know and credit you with the sale. Presenting more opportunities to click through to a brand’s website and by creating different contexts will increase traffic and ultimately the opportunity to earn
Examples of incorporating affiliate marketing into your website
Make sure you display it in-store
Most brands offer co-branded flyers free of charge. If you engage with your customers face-to-face in your shop or workshop, let them have a leaflet. This will have a unique discount code which tracks sales back to you. If you sell on-line then include the leaflet. We can tailor these to suit your customers’ buying styles and preferences, ensuring the most relevant information is included.
Engage with your customers
Your customers may not notice the affiliate partnership while on your website, so consider including it in your follow up communications. This could engage customers who haven’t already seen it, serving as a ‘thanks’ for their custom.
Another aspect to consider is when you engage with your customers. For example, if you’re a tour operator, you may send out an email in the run up to your customer’s trip. At this stage, they may be looking for travel insurance. This would be a good time to remind them of the discount available to them, from you.
Engage with us
Our consumer blog The Draft, contains a wealth of blog posts that we are more than happy for you to share with your customers – just remember to give us credit and append your unique affiliate link. We will always try to include our partners where relevant in our blogs. If you have a post you’d like to write, let us know. If you are a tour operator in the Alps, why not write about the most epic climbs to tackle there? If you offer coaching services, we are always looking for training advice. If you’re a mechanic, why not contribute our ‘How to Guide’?
Social media engagement is also useful, so keep us in the loop with tags and retweets and we can do the same.
Feedback is crucial to better understand how the partnership is working for you and what we can do to improve. We will check in regularly with you but remember to keep us updated; if you’re running a competition or released a new service offering. We have branded promotional items which make great options for competition prizes or race packs; just get in touch and we’d be happy to help.
Partnership is really important to us at Yellow Jersey. We don’t just offer business insurance solutions. Through our consumer bicycle and travel insurance, we can also help create an additional income stream through our affiliate scheme.