Managing Affiliate Coupon Offers

Shopping with a computer

A proven method of attracting eCommerce traffic, coupon and deal sites draw a lot of attention. Experts agree coupons are also especially effective tools when it comes to enticing new customers and convincing them to convert.

In fact, offering a coupon has been shown to convince over 75% percent of consumers to increase their average order value by $40, and two-thirds of millennial’s say they will switch brands if they can enjoy at least a 30 percent discount.

One of the best ways to distribute these coupons is through affiliate marketing. However, managing affiliate coupon offers carefully is key to both their effectiveness and ensuring your profitability.

What is a Coupon Affiliate?

In the simplest terms, these organizations partner with eCommerce businesses to distribute promo codes. These businesses make money from commissions earned by driving traffic to your website. They do this by marketing your offers in email newsletters, social media and using other avenues of outreach. Offers are usually organized by category and can be targeted to specific demographic groups.

Establish Your Goal

Before approaching an affiliate coupon site, you must decide what you want to accomplish with your offer. Whether you’re launching a new business using a free eCommerce website theme from Shopify, or you’ve been in business for quite a while, this will help you determine how to structure your offer and configure your codes.

If you want to reach a narrow audience of a specific type of customer, you’ll be better served with a company that focuses its efforts more narrowly. You’ll also want to configure your code so it can only be redeemed when it originates from the organization with which you placed it. If you leave it open to anyone, you could find your marketing effort spread far, wide and out of control.

Evaluating a Site

Before agreeing to place an affiliate coupon offer, review the site to ensure its validity and gauge its potential for effectiveness. A key indicator is the amount of traffic the site draws from search. It’s typically pretty high, as this is just the nature of the game. However if its traffic comes solely from search, this is an indicator it lacks a dedicated following. Try some of the codes they offer to see if they work. If you immediately come upon one that doesn’t function it’s a sign the site is doing a poor job of curating its offers.

Be Selective

When you visit the site, look at it from the perspective of a potential customer. Is its design attractive? Are offers arranged logically and are they easy to find? Does it have testimonials by real people who regularly use the site? Does it have an editorial component? If it does, that’s a sign the company has real people behind it—as opposed to being an automated storehouse of offers designed primarily to attract search engine traffic.

Red Flags

As we mentioned above, if you find a lot of dead offers on a site they’re not paying attention—or worse, just don’t care about removing expired coupons. If one of those elapsed offers is yours, shoppers will be disappointed when they visit your store try to use it. What’s more, you could still be on the hook for paying a commission to the site. While we’re on the subject, a clear-cut explanation of the commission policy should be readily available. Contact information should be posted prominently and the site should rank highly in search engine results. Most significantly, if there are no reviews on the site, it’s likely they have something to hide, or they’re ineffective at their business. Either way, they’re not worth your time.

Managing affiliate coupon offers, like so many other aspects of running an eCommerce business is largely a matter of exercising common sense. Ultimately, you want to make sure you’re working with an effective organization capable of reaching your desired customer. And, you want to ensure your offer goes only where you want it to be.

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About Annabel Johnson

Part time gamer, reviewer and blogger. Full time geek and tech expert!

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