UK advertisers spent £1.3 billion on affiliate marketing and lead generation in 2015 as the IAB’s latest valuation of “performance marketing” showed a 9.3% lift in budgets year on year.
Affiliate marketing and lead generation drove £16.9 billion in sales during 2014, according to the IAB’s revised estimation, which rose 5.4% to £17.7 billion in 2015. When considering the 9.3% rise in advertiser spend, this equates to a return of £13 for every £1 committed last year, which is £1 less than a revised estimate for 2014.
Reference - performancein(.)com/news/2016/04/14/uk-performance-marketing-worth-13-billion-channels-show-signs-maturing/
Top affiliate segments such as cashback, coupons, group deals, price comparisons, product comparisons or niche product based websites are top sales driven websites for online retailers. Recently we have seen myvouchercodes(.)co(.)uk and vouchercodes(.)com sold for millions with millions of user base and the ability to drive quality traffic to retailers.
The first big step of any affiliate jumping into affiliate marketing is to setup a great affiliate website. Advanced users may also call it professional responsive and dynamically driven website. Most of the affiliates who wish to indulge into affiliate marketing are non-technical and they spend countless hours on the internet to learn, explore and understand how to design and develop their project. Some may start learning programming languages with online courses, others find development companies and some may hire independent affiliates from freelance resources.
Here are some of the common questions that affiliate seek to find answers.
WHAT IS RESPONSIVE DESIGN?
Responsive websites are developed under responsive frameworks such as Bootstrap that auto adjusts the website layout on all devices. Responsive websites looks great on all internet browsers and all smart devices such as mobile, tablets, laptops or desktops.
I WANT DEVELOPMENT SUPPORT?
Most affiliates with non-technical background begin their search on Google or freelance websites who could help them build the website. Good understanding of several technologies and programming languages is required to build a responsive and database driven website that may also require integrating with affiliate network APIs for data integration. Most freelancers may have developed websites but not specialized affiliate related projects that requires decent understanding of affiliate networks.
NO WEB HOSTING EXPERIENCE?
Lack of Web hosting management experience in another big issue that most new affiliate struggle to understand. With so many options in the industry from shared, dedicated, cloud or hybrid plug and play hosting options comes with its own expert understanding. How to plug DNS, AA, MS records and all that technical jargon and then slow response time from hosting providers are common issues faced by several new affiliates. Some opt-in for high end cloud with auto scale and daily backup options from Amazon or Google but is it required from the beginning?
DO I NEED APPS TOO?
As mobile users are increasing with the rise of smart phones and tablets. More than a billion apps have been downloaded. Understanding if mobile apps are required with your website and which framework is useful to develop one. Do you need hybrid or native app? How much would it cost? There are so many questions that need professional answers.
Same questions applies if you wish to setup internet browser extensions that are quite popular with cashback websites such as ebuddy at ebates(.)com
INTEGRATING DATA WITH APIs?
API stands for Application Protocol Interface that is a technical term given to define data collection method from external web services. Affiliate marketing networks offer multiple API’s with different data sets and reports that are useful to effectively manage a dynamic cashback, price comparison or coupons website. Each affiliate network has its own set of APIs and different technologies are used to provide the data. It is not easy for a new affiliate to understand all of them and hence use them effectively for his first venture.
WHICH AFFILIATE NETWORK?
There are so many affiliate networks and programs available and a large number of retailers offer their affiliate programs on multiple affiliate networks. How do you know which affiliate network offers the best campaigns, commissions, tracking, payments, customer service and technology? This is the key question asked several times on the affiliate forums and each affiliate has its own reason to rank one affiliate network better on other. Some affiliate networks are specialized on particular industry niche such as OMG UK for Finance related, Affiliate Future for travel and Affiliate Window for several mix niches. Some networks offer the payments twice a month to affiliates and others allow a lot of time to retailers for de-duping process and that can delay affiliate commission payments for over two months. Several large retailers offer their programs independently such as Amazon and Ebay that are highly respectable affiliate programs in the industry but they have their own panels for affiliates.
NEED TRAINING ON AFFILIATE NETWORKS?
Do you need training on how to access information, apply for stores, and understand options in each affiliate networks? You can view guides or how it works sections on each affiliate networks but is it effective? May be you need personalized twenty minutes training session on each affiliate network from an experienced affiliate network management team. There are CPA, CPL, CPC and hybrid networks and most of new affiliates don’t know the difference and which one to choose for your affiliate project.
HOW TO TAKE OFF WITH YOUR PROJECT?
Finally you have the great idea to setup your affiliate website that you may have heard from an affiliate exhibition but not sure how to bind it all together and take off successfully. What comes first i.e. training, design, development, hosting, finance, resources, marketing plan etc. You may have so many questions in your mind that need professional answers. Is there a successful framework or ingredients to launch a successful affiliate project? Have I done enough research in the market or niche to explore the opportunity or gap that I can tap into successfully?
KISS ASS MARKETING PLAN?
Majority of the new affiliate marketers rely on SEO to promote their affiliate projects. Some may allocate decent budget on PPC and social media. Few are professional marketers who build strong marketing plans after defining the marketing, segmenting targeted customers and finding the channels they wish to advertise to obtain quality conversions. After having the project ready, we have seen the websites go in drain and that is not because it does not work or there is no opportunity but the lack of knowledge with affiliates on how to define their marketing strategy and then pull it off with the right marketing mix.
NEED LONG TERM SUPPORT?
Affiliate websites also need long terms support to customize, adding in new features, comply with on-going API changes with the affiliate networks, working with new trends and even adding fresh look and colors after some time to keep the users interested. You need a reliable resource to manage your affiliate website strategy and comply with the latest trends and standards and making sure your user’s and competitor learning are creating positive impact on your website. It is not just running the website smoothly but enhancing it daily and keeping it up with the competition, industry latest techniques and trends.
FINALLY… THE SOLUTION
If you are doubtful about any point above and most of the affiliate are specially when launching their first project in affiliate marketing. It could be cashback project, discount coupons, price comparison, group deals, product niche or any other. You need professional support to get it right from the beginning.
We at iLeadDigital.com provide full design, development, training and support services to affiliates. With over 100 affiliate projects successfully completed and working for over 12 years in the affiliate industry, we understand the frustrations of affiliates and provide our professional design, development, support and training services.
- iLeadDigital.com provides dynamic and bespoke services to affiliate in design and development of your project according to your specific requirements.
- We use latest technologies and responsive framework to make your website appear perfect on all smart devices.
- We setup, manage, upload and provide you training on website hosting