Affiliate Program for the Beginner's to Setting Up an Your Shopify Store
After you’ve started your online store, driven targeted traffic to your products, and made some initial sales, it can be tough figuring out what next steps to take to further grow your business.
One often overlooked approach is the effectiveness of affiliate marketing, and knowing how to create an affiliate program that helps your customers and advocates do your marketing for you. Today, we’ll cover the essentials and show you how to create an affiliate program for your Shopify store.
Table of Contents
- What is affiliate marketing?
- Benefits of affiliate marketing
- How to create an affiliate program for your business
- Get started with your first affiliate program
What is affiliate marketing?
Affiliate marketing is a reward-based system that encourages partners to promote your products in exchange for a commission.
A customer, advocate, or industry marketer signs up for your affiliate program and sends visitors to your store through their special referral link, and any sales that you make as a result of their promotion earns the marketer a reward.
Usually, an affiliate program will pay via a flat dollar amount or a percentage of the total sale, but incentives could also be free or discounted products. Target, for example, gives affiliates exclusive sales and promos, in addition to a commission.
Affiliate marketing is used both in business-to-consumer (B2C) and business-to-business (B2B) campaigns, but it’s far more popular among the consumer products industry. According to the AffStat 2016 Affiliate Marketing Benchmark Report, nearly 60% of affiliate marketers promote B2C, compared to 22% for B2C services and even less for B2B products and services.
Benefits of affiliate marketing
According to 2016 research from Business Insider, affiliate marketing is responsible for driving up to 16% of all U.S. ecommerce sales.
And there’s real-world evidence that affiliate marketing is effective: The Wirecutter, now owned by The New York Times, generated $150 million in online sales in 2015 alone by using referral links for the various products they feature.
How to create an affiliate program
- Is affiliate marketing right for your business?
- How to create an affiliate program with Shopify apps
- How to find the right affiliates
- How to manage affiliates
Is affiliate marketing right for your business?
Affiliate marketing isn’t right for every business. If you have small profit margins, for example, it may not make sense: It would be difficult to pay your affiliates and also turn a profit.
Affiliate programs need to pay a portion of each sale in order for it to be worth the promoter’s effort and money, depending on their approach to promoting your products. One of the best ways to find out if an affiliate program is a good fit for your business is checking to see other companies in your industry have created them.
For instance, BarkBox has been running a successful affiliate program for nearly a five years now.