How to Create Custom Affiliate Links

Good morning, good afternoon, everyone. Happy Tuesday to you here. This is Brett Owens from LeadDyno, our marketing director and the co-founder. All about affiliate links today. So thanks for joining me for this webcast. I am going to ramble on about old and new affiliate link features. I actually have a really cool new one where we can assign everything coming from a specific domain to an affiliate.

I will get right into that. Let me also add that I am happy to stick around as long as you would like me to. I can demo anything on or off-topic if you would like me to see anything that is affiliate influencer marketing-related I can talk about or we can even get into SEO. We can get crazy.
Whatever you want to do, this time is yours. I am more than happy to stick around. Let me get into the affiliate link fun and then we can kinda take it from there. So if you do need to get ahold of me, go to webinar window, use the questions panel. Just type in what’s on your mind and I will get to it either on-the-fly or we’ll save some time afterwards. All right.

So the affiliate links. We’ve got different ways that we can render affiliate links to your affiliates. So what I am doing here, looking live on the LeadDyno affiliate dashboard. For this particular affiliate, I have a code which can be used in Shopify, BigCommerce, so on and so forth, and then the referral link.
So this is going to be the tracking link that LeadDyno uses. Now, we can let affiliates change the URL within a link so if they wanna send traffic to somewhere other than your homepage. So, for example, we are doing some more stuff with influencers on the LeadDyno side of things, leaddyno.com/influencer is a landing page that we have. If one particular affiliate wants to send folks to that page, they could do that with their main one here.

Of course, they’ve got SubIDs also available to them. That’s something we can also get into if you would like to see that. All right. So what does this link by default look like? So coming in here, you’ve got the LeadDyno…this is the domain I am promoting. So, in your case, if I’m an affiliate of your website, this is gonna be your domain.com.

We always have the pound and underscores kind of a fact of life of doing affiliate tracking. So we’ve got a little bit a jumble in there, but then this is custom at the end, eca. Now, if I wanna change the code, you can let affiliates change their affiliate codes. If I want to change my code to brett or brettowens, I can go ahead and do that here, change that code.

You can see my affiliate link swaps with that. So, pretty straightforward out of the box. Let’s get into some of the settings that we have. So now I’m going to get into LeadDyno itself. I’m sure you’re familiar how to access the list. Just to review, app.leaddyno.com is going to get you there from any web browser. And from here, I can go on in and I can change the affiliate setting.

So, for example, if I want to further shorten the affiliate links, we actually have our own link shortening service. This is going to be the third option down here. And, again, I’m under Settings at the very top, and then Affiliate Settings is going to be the second one down on the left. So if I want to shorten affiliate links, I could actually use a LeadDyno…we created our own link shortener so it’s kind of like Bitly.

If you want to do that, you would click Yes, you would save it, and this is all going to update in real-time, folks. So then we’ve got the tracking link within here. It’s going to turn into…this is going to be a link shortening one. I might have to restart my browser.

But, anyway, if I go with the link shortener, that’s going to then redo the referral links within here using our link shortening service. So that’s something that you can or cannot do depending on what you want. Query tracking is… And, I’m sorry, I’m getting behind the scenes a little bit here but I just want to give you the full background. Query tracking is going to get you a little different slice on things. It’s going to be a little more accurate.

We usually refer people to turn that off. What that’s going to do to your link, however…let me, you know, see if I can refresh this and get that one to go. Oh, I’m sorry. I guess it’s running a little behind. This is what the link shortener is going to look like. So this is using the link shortening service, lddy.no. You could tell I guess I’m at the…technically, I’m at the cutting edge of that Millennial generation.

I have zero patience for anything online. That’s why I’m grinding when it doesn’t update in real-time for me. But this is the link shortener that I had previously moved it over to. Let me see if another refresh would get me over, jump on the query. The query will give you a different look on this link then also. So if we’re not going to use the affiliate link for that service, I would actually need to turn this off.
I did not do that. So let me toggle this back off, see if I can show you what this is then going to look like. Okay. Here we go. So we got a little real-time look, leaddyno.com. That’s where you get the ?afmc. A little inside baseball for you, ALCS first pitch and a little bit here.
So I’ll give you a little inside knowledge. One thing that we do use this for, we’ve found Instagram has kind of that love-hate thing with influencers where they know influencers run the platform but then they say that they don’t want influencer marketing. We’ve had them actually go after different links.
You won’t tell me otherwise… convince me otherwise. I think they did it on purpose. They did look at our pound sign and then rendered those ineffective, so we’re kind of in a little cat and mouse we’re playing with Instagram or we’ve changed it over to the ?afmc. Long story short, if you need help with Instagram tracking, let us know. We can help you kind of toggle the screen in between here as well.
All right. Well, let me get into that domain stuff, and then… I see a question popping in already. Let me get into that domain feature, which is pretty straightforward, and then we can do any more questions that you have on affiliate links or ramble on about anything else that we’ve got here. All right, let me go into my affiliate account here. So, again, I’m within LeadDyno.
I’ve got my affiliates in here. So if I just kind of take it a step back, 3,356 affiliates, proudly promoting LeadDyno. If I go into this account here which is one that I’ve set up for myself, so I’ve got the affiliate code in here. This is a code that you can set up from the admin side. If you want to give your affiliates the ability to update this, you can.
Referrer domain is the feature I was teasing in that newsletter. This is the domain that if you put in, for example, I’ve got a new website here. Let me show you how this would work. So if I wanted to say, “Hey, anyone from this website of Brett’s is going to go ahead and be credited to him,” I’m going to put this in as the referring domain.
So this is saying anytime you see something that comes from this domain. So this is saying anytime you see something that comes from this domain to yours, LeadDyno is going to know to automatically credit that to that person. So, in this case, it is my website, it is not maybe particularly relevant to affiliate tracking. But if I did want to refer LeadDyno from that website, I could do that, and now the referred domain is going to capture everything.
So this is a nice way that you can tell your affiliates, “Hey, any link you put on your site, even if you forget to use that affiliate link, we’re going to go ahead and we’re going to credit it to you using this referrer domain, so that’s a nice feature. If they want to do a landing page on their own site, they could do that. They could send people to their site and then send them to yours. It’s just as if they used an affiliate link to your site.
So that’s a way that they can… Also, of course, on their own website, they determine their own URL, so I could do howtoretireondividends/leaddyno, I could do that domain.com/affiliatetracking/ influencertracking, those types of things. All right. Let me get into questions we got going here.
Russ mentioning screen did not match the audio. So, apologies, Russ, if we’re running slow, I guess, on the screen side of things. I talk fast and I might be out-talking my internet connection or your internet connection right now. I will get this posted with a video, hopefully, that will load better.
Of course, all looks fine for me on my machine, so, hopefully, it is recording all of this in real-time. So you can review this if you want. Of course, if anything skipped and you need me to review anything right now for you, I would be more than happy to do that as well. Alyssa says, “It often takes users six days to make a purchase on my site.They may not use the affiliate link on their converting visit.Is that still tracked and attributed to the affiliates?”
So, yes, Alyssa, that would still be tracked and attributed to that referring affiliate. That is also a setting that we’ve got going here, Alyssa, so let me show you where that is. If I go to Settings at the top of my screen and I go to…and we’re testing me here.
I think it’s under account…is it under account settings? Yeah, Affiliate Settings. So this is where we were before doing the shortening of the affiliate links. Very last setting here, Number of Months the Affiliate Referral Lasts. By default, we’ve got this loaded…I believe it’s going as six months on the new accounts. If you want to leave it blank, you could do it forever, which means a person could make a purchase three years from now and the initial credit will still be given to that affiliate.
That’s an option for you. One month if you want to just keep it within the month, we can do that as well. So you’ve got some options here, Alyssa, on what you want to do. For six days, no problem at all. All right, next question. Marcello asks, “Can you create different discount codes for people using Shopify with LeadDyno?”
So a two-part question. Let me just go ahead and talk to that briefly. The affiliate code, for our fellow Shopify users here, the affiliate code is going to double as a discount code. So if the affiliate code is ticked into the Shopify store as a discount code, we’re also going to register that to the affiliate.
Now, we do have a limit in this maybe getting into the second part of the question, one discount code per affiliate. So Marcello continues, “When I want to edit the affiliate code, seems it changes it for all the affiliates when you go on apps and then edit.” So, Marcello, it should only change it for that particular affiliate. So if I go under my affiliates, let’s say I’m going to kind of change the code for myself here.
Go to Brett, the affiliate code…it should be unique to me. It should be tied just to me here, so this should only update for me and then you can do a different affiliate code, of course, for each affiliate. If you want to give them each the ability to change their codes, you can do that in here as well.
If you need a hand with this, let’s get you over to leaddyno.com/support. Adam would be the guy to talk to here. He’s our marketing manager. You could find him, set up a phone call or, of course, the live chat is available over on the right-hand side. Email as well but usually, phone or live chat can be the quickest way to get some help here.
Okay. Amanda asked, “Can affiliates go beyond shortening the referral link and also customize it?” Yeah. Amanda, the way…so the extent in which you’re going to be able to customize that link is going to be by changing their affiliate code. So if I go ahead and change my code here… so I’ll go first and last name this time, that is going to change my link. If we don’t like the afmc, we can go into our settings.
Under Settings, we can go to Affiliate Settings. And what am I going to do here? I’m going to…I wanted to change this query. Don’t tell them I said this. You can tell we have developers write this stuff sometimes.
Query Parameter For Tracking Links, of course, so a little mouthful there. But let me turn that off, save it. What that’s going to do for us, it gets rid of that afmc in the referral link. We still have the #_a, that’s just kind of cost of doing business here on the tracking side. We can’t get it exactly to leaddyno.com. We need some little tracking gibberish in there, unfortunately, but this is the closest we can get there, Amanda, on that customized link.
Of course, this is if it’s going to your website. Now, again, if they want to go to their own domain first and then link from their own domain, no problem at all. We can give them an entire domain. That is going to be using on the affiliate itself and then using that referral domain. So just a refresh on that one since we’re doing a little bit of a breadcrumb trail here.
But if I go into the affiliates, I can then assign an entire domain to that affiliate. All right. A few more questions coming in here. Danielle asks, “Is there a resource library from our how-to guys like setting up MassPay with ProPay custom domain for the affiliate dashboards?” We do, Danielle, docs.leaddyno.com will get you in here.
Let me see if I can type this as an answer to you. Okay, docs.leaddyno.com. PayPal MassPay, which I think we’re talking about, is going to be mentioned down here on the left side. So PayPal MassPay, we’ve got here. Custom domain setup, that is going to be down here as well.
Custom domain is going to be right here. So, yeah, these are going to be the guys here, Danielle, that you can use on the how-tos. Of course, if you’re going through them, you have questions, we can then connect with you on that front. All right. Monique checking in asking, “What if an affiliate wants to change their affiliate code to the same one another affiliate has, for example, James123?”
In that case, Monique, LeadDyno will not let them do that. So it’s going to make sure it’s unique, first come, first served on the affiliate code. So if I, as Brett, want to go in here and for whatever reason, I want to be James123 and there’s already a James123, it’s not going to let me do that. It’s going to make me choose a unique code. And then a follow-up question from Monique, “Is there a way to check if the site is not a restricted site for the Ts and Cs?No pornography.”
So the good news on the referral site here, Monique, is that it has to be plugged in by an admin. We’re not giving access at this time to the affiliate. So you’ll be able to check. We don’t have an automated way to do it, but before you put the domain in here, of course, you can head on over to the website, see if it conforms with your terms and conditions.
If that requires it being the old SFW, safe for work, you can do that, make sure it is safe for the office or complies with your terms and conditions, whatever those are, before you put it in a referred domain. But, again, this is an admin role referred domain, like I say. You can have different people of your team do this. You could have a agency partner do this.
I would then have them check that domain just to make sure that it does comply with what you’re looking for. All right. A couple more questions. Monique on the follow-up, “Messaging to the customer.” If you could expand on that, I would appreciate it. Going over to Cathy, “My affiliates are accustomed to their names showing on a replicated site.Is there a way to tag my homepage with info from LeadDyno?”
Is there a way to tag my homepage, so let me see if I can think through this. So the affiliates are accustomed to their names showing on a replicated site. If you could get me an example of that replicated site, Cathy, I could look at it either in real-time or we could circle back with you to see if there’s a way we can do that. I guess on the replicated site, it might be possible if we have the link going.
So we might need to use the affiliate link from the replicated site over to your site, so that might be the way to do it. But, again, we could circle back on your specific case. Either I can do it now or we can have our support folks follow up with you as well. Okay, back to Monique, “Website default customizations.” Let me get back into LeadDyno here.
So if I go to websites, customizations… When will white be available to select as a font? Oh, God, it’s used with the primary colors. So if I want to go with a color scheme and then I need…where’s the font? You can tell that I’m not allowed to be the style guy because I don’t know where any of this is.
Let me circle back with you on that one, Monique, is it might be possible either using a selection or using custom CSS. So if you want to…I’ll tell you the easiest way to do it. You probably got emails from me about the webinar today. If you want to just reply to me, I can connect you with a member of our support team. We can walk you through that more knowledge of styling and CSS options than I would currently be able to ramble on on my side.
Cool. So I think that is it. “Is there a messaging follow-up on that affiliate code question that the customer affiliate name code is not available?” I am not sure. Let us go ahead and check this out. And maybe opening myself up for a conversation with my developers later, but let me go ahead…
Let me go onto my alter ego here, the other Brett account. Okay. Here is this dashboard. That would be the messaging. So as I mentioned earlier, sometimes, we have developers write these so not the nicest code.
But that’s going to be the…not the nicest copy or verbiage but, again, “Please enter a valid code,” that is engineering speak for, “We don’t have this.It’s already been taken.” All right. Okay, one more on affiliate marketing and training, when will videos or docs created from the new affiliate perspective so we can get them up and running.
We have intel for affiliate program managers but not affiliates. Good question. We have in previous months and previous years done training for affiliates only on those dashboards. I’ve got it somewhere…somewhere on our YouTube channel, I’ve got vlog posts about it. We do have the materials, probably did not do a good job of surfacing them.
So, again, if you are looking…anyone on the webcast who’s looking for that type of material, training for your affiliates themselves, go ahead and reply back to me. I’ll need to do a little digging in it. I don’t want to make you stay on while I comb through our YouTube channel here, but I will do that once I get off the horn today and I can circle back with you on anything there.
All right. Back to Danielle, “Is there a short link from the affiliate dashboard for Instagram?” So, yeah, Danielle. So the way that Instagram is a little finicky, I mentioned the love-hate. We do have a shortcut to Instagram. It’s a little cheesy in that it gives you your affiliate Instagram Sharing Instructions. Copy the link, launch Instagram, and paste it into Instagram.
They don’t allow you to integrate with them like we do with Facebook. And I know, I get it, I know Instagram is owned by Facebook. Facebook, we can go in, we can pop in that affiliate link. There’s no more to do for Instagram. It doesn’t make you copy and paste that link. The best we can do on the shortcut because we know everyone is using Instagram from their mobile device, we created a mobile app for Android and for iPhone devices.
It’s called “Affiliate Dashboard.” What this app does is it puts your entire dashboard directly onto their phones so that, Danielle, when they go through this process from their phone, they do the Instagram thing. They copy it. At least we’ve got that link onto their smartphone clipboard so when they then paste that link, easier to do it on Instagram since they’re probably doing it from the phone.
They can do it from the device if they want to this way as well. Okay. Looks like we are good. Sorry, one more thing from Danielle. No, I’m sorry, back to Monique. Very kind with your thank yous, Monique, so I appreciate that. And then when Monique tried to send text messages using the marketing materials, it did not include the affiliate link.

So that should happen, Monique. It should happen, of course, from the mobile device. So that’s a case where, if you can use the mobile app, I would encourage you to do that. It should have the link on there. If it does not, then that’s something that we need to look at with you so we can specifically look at that. So the one thing to check, the text message sharing on the dashboard is only available from the mobile device, so just make sure of that.
And we do have this available for folks, but, again, beyond that, then that’s something that we should look at with you. All right. Okay. A lot more. Okay. Chris, glad I was helpful. Thanks for those kind words there.
Back over to Russ. “If you’re creating a brand new affiliate program, do you have any good resources?” We do. So common to create a brand new program. Let me see if I can…Russ, I’m going to see if I can get you our little… I guess something for beginners.
Okay. This is going to kind of take you through those very first steps here, Russ. This takes you through the basics. I have more going back to our YouTube channel here. I do have more videos over there that will walk you through those initial steps as well.
Let me see if I can get over to YouTube. LeadDyno… I can go to my channel. Where’s my channel? How to Setup Affiliate Marketing, so this would be kind of good stuff here. So let’s go into…
Good afternoon, everyone. All right. So, yeah, if you wanna hear me yap for another 12 minutes, here we go, on the YouTube… Did I…? Oh, I don’t know if I got the… Oh, no. Here we go.
So I sometimes GoToWebinar… I try to copy and paste this stuff in the window. Can be a little funny but, yeah, here’s a couple on the YouTube channel there, Russ. If you have specific questions, follow-ups on that one, let me know. All right, with that… Looks like we got some follow-ups with Monique. So, Monique, let’s circle back online.
Thank you, Marcello. I appreciate the kind words. Oh, one more. Adam mentioned, “New affiliate newsletter templates available.Do we have topics in those outlined?” We do not yet, Danielle, so I would be open to hearing what you think. A little background for everyone. If you go to tools and you go to Affiliate Newsletters, when you go to New Affiliate Newsletters, there are four templates down here.
I wrote these so if you think they stink, you can take umbrage with me. But these were newsletters that I had sent out previously to our own affiliates, some of them I sent over and over. I was sharing them with our users kind of usually on a one-off kind of basis and then we said, “Hey, let’s get these in there.”
There’s templates so they’re basically from, like, my own swiped files in there. The program update is one that I send every…this is kind of the basis for the newsletter that I send every month, so this is what I would recommend starting with. We do talk about Instagram, we do talk about the mobile app. If there are things that you would like to go ahead and see, Danielle, go ahead and let me know.
We’ll be more than happy to get you going on that one. All right, sorry, I know it’s links. I’m not sure if I might have jammed them all in the… Let me try getting you one more on the Affiliate Marketing for Beginners going out to everyone because I believe I may have appended the YouTube thing by accident.
Go on to our YouTube channel. There’s a million videos there. If you do need the link, let me know. We’ll get it over to you. I’ll leave that on the comments, /demo also has previous YouTube stuff as well. All right. Looks like we’re good.

I will leave everyone with our contact info, leaddyno.com/support. Adam and Lisa are kind enough to make their calendars available this week later today, later this week also, so stay in touch. Let us know if we can help out with anything. If you enjoyed this, let me know. If you hated it, let me know, then I’ll save the time. But I do thank everyone for joining.

If you have ideas for topics that you would like to see covered in the future months, let us know. Features you would like to see, let us know. We can rattle the cage of our engineers. They are very talented. I poke fun at them a little bit when they try to write words but they are very talented and created this wonderful tracking tool and experience that we can use for affiliate and influencer marketing.

Everyone, have a great rest of your Tuesday. Again, let me know if we can help you out. Circle back with anything, brett@leaddyno.com goes back to me. Live chats on the website is 24 hours a day, so if you can’t sleep and you just want a friend to talk to, we will have someone on the website or within the app. Adam and Lisa are also kind enough to volunteer their calendars to be your friends this week.
Thanks again, everyone, for joining. Hope to hear from you soon.

How to Brand Your Affiliate Website

Some companies may slow down in August, but we here at LeadDyno are like you – we keep on motoring ahead! I have a busy summer update for you today, including exciting news regarding:

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LeadDyno 2019 Review: Upgrade to the Latest & Greatest Version

The boys have been grinding away on our beautiful new LeadDyno user interface (UI) for a solid year. And at long last, it’s here!

This shiny new UI will make your life easier. We’ve added the latest and greatest features asked for by expert affiliate and marketing managers like yourself. (More on these in a minute, as well as details on how you can join me for a demo.)

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LeadDyno Affiliate Newsletter for May 2019

It’s commission payment time for LeadDyno partners! If we owe you $75 or more in commissions, we’ll be sending your payment your way via PayPal. Expect it by tomorrow.

New Promo Opp: 11 Most Profitable Affiliate Niches

Here’s a great “link love” article to promote on social media. We analyzed seasonal and yearly trends in the affiliate space to identify the 11 most profitable niches for affiliate marketers. The piece is extremely popular already:

11 Most Profitable Niches For Affiliate Marketing

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Why Use Affiliate Marketing? Infographic

Affiliate Marketing is performance – based.
You only have to pay commission to your affiliate once the desired action has taken place this motivates the affiliate to drive the conversion you’re looking for.
This can help you figure out which affiliates work and which do not. Brought To You By LeadDyno

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15 Free Influencer Marketing Invitations (Per Month!)

In this LeadDyno-powered affiliate and influencer marketing newsletter we’ll discuss how you can:

  • Access 15 complimentary affiliate / influencer invitations right now,
  • Get your affiliate program featured in our next newsletter, and
  • Receive valuable tax advice (no cost) from our all-star accountant.

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How to Become a Certified Affiliate Manager

In this LeadDyno-powered affiliate and influencer marketing newsletter we’ll discuss how you can:

  • Become a certified affiliate manager,
  • Collect 5-star reviews for your affiliate program,
  • Hire an expert to run your program, and
  • Find a good website developer.

#1 – How to Become a Certified Affiliate Manager

Partner, friend and affiliate manager Dustin Howes has launched an online course that’ll teach you how to be a top affiliate manager:

Dustin is sharing his expertise to teach applicants how to successfully launch and scale multi-million dollar affiliate channels. He’s also pointing out the common mistakes that affiliate managers (especially newbies) make – and how to avoid them.

Interested in launching a profitable “performance marketing” channel? Who isn’t?!

Get certified and get access to Dustin and his affiliate smarts. Learn more about Performance Marketing Manager here.

#2 – Get 5-Star Reviews for Your Affiliate Program

Our E-Commerce Affiliate Network (ECA) is on its way to becoming “Yelp for affiliate programs.” We rolled out a review feature that lets your affiliate partners review your program.

I know that LeadDyno-powered affiliate programs tend to be better run, feature cooler products and pay more generous commissions than your industry average. So here’s a chance for us to highlight your excellent affiliate programs with 5-star reviews from your partners!

It’s pretty easy to leave a review. Your affiliates will simply log into their ECA accounts, select Rate Merchant, and leave your review right there. As you collect reviews, you’ll see your “star rating” populate thanks to your partners:

Any questions? Let me know. (And thank you to the three affiliate partners of ours who kindly reviewed our program before I even announced this!)

#3 – Need an Affiliate Manager? Hire Geno’s Team

Do you need an expert affiliate manager today to run your affiliate program for you? If so, let me introduce you to my friend and colleague Geno Prussakov. He’s one of the best in the business for scaling and managing successful affiliate programs. He also has an impressive rolodex of influencers, too.

Last year, I sat down and asked Geno a few questions. You can read the full interview here. If you’re interested in potentially hiring Geno’s firm AM Navigator, here’s where we got down to brass tacks in our conversation:

What’s the minimum budget a merchant or marketer should have in mind when looking to engage a firm like yours?

Much depends on the type of relationship the merchant is looking for. Fees on fully outsourced management solutions start from a couple of thousand dollars a month, while in co-management scenarios (where there is a strong internal support of the program and some of the management-related tasks are handled in-house), we are open to working with smaller budgets.

And how about time commitment. If I wanted to hand off my affiliate marketing efforts to you, how much time should I still plan on dedicating? In other words, how much responsibility can I outsource to you, and automate via products like LeadDyno?

In full outsourced management context, the advertiser’s time commitment may be as brief as 1-2 hours a week, and likely not even every week. In co-management cases, several hours a week.

For readers interested in possibly taking the next step towards outsourcing their affiliate program management, what step(s) can they take next?

Take a look at the services that we offer, and then request your quote, providing as much detail as possible. I personally respond to every quote request within 12 hours of its submission.

Update: Geno now has a LinkedIn Course on Affiliate Marketing – you can watch it right here!

#4 – Need a Good Web Developer? Talk to Craig

Good, reliable web developers are tough to come by. If you’re nodding your head, well, I’ve got some good news for you. My friend Craig recently launched his own firm, and he can help with website and e-commerce projects at a reasonable cost.

Sunshine Digital is the place for those of you looking for website help from a reliable team based right here in the US (Florida, to be specific). If you chat with Craig, please do tell him that I sent you. Contact him about your next project here.

Finally, Congrats to These Featured Affiliate Programs

We feature 5 affiliate programs every day in our email newsletters and Facebook posts for the affiliates and influencers. Congratulations to these well-deserving affiliate programs that saw their names in lights over the past week!

Would you like to have your affiliate program featured? Please let me know!

First step is to join ECA (if you haven’t already). Click the Network tab from within LeadDyno (lower-left corner) to setup your merchant profile. Then, I can work with you to polish your profile and get you dialed in for your feature.

-Brett Owens
Marketing Director & Co-Founder
LeadDyno – Easy Affiliate Marketing (& Influencer Network!)
(888) 340-6425

Join me for a live 12-min affiliate marketing demo this week.

The LeadDyno Affiliate Network

How to Start Successful Online Affiliate Programs

Successful online affiliate programs are arguably the easiest way to grow your profits. These programs, also known as affiliate marketing, have existed for years, yet remain severely underutilized by brands and blogs looking to expand their audience.

The good news is that anyone can start using online affiliate programs to add passive revenue to their business, and for less effort than you might think.

This guide will show you everything you need to know about online affiliate marketing and how it can help you grow your business:

online affiliate programs

What is Online Affiliate Marketing?

In case you’re not wholly familiar with the term, online affiliate marketing is the practice of having users promote your products in exchange for a commission if they’re responsible for you making a sale.

For example, someone who is a big fan of one of your products might want to include an affiliate link to the product on their own web page or blog. Then, when one of their audience members clicks the link and makes a purchase, your affiliate will earn a commission for the sale.

Affiliate links are different than typical backlinks because they’re unique to each affiliate marketer. This way, you know exactly who was responsible for the sale and can pay out accordingly.

Best of all, the right online affiliate marketing program means you’ll never have to lift a finger once you put it into action.

Getting Started with Successful Online Affiliate Programs

Companies of all sizes and industries can benefit from affiliate marketing, whether you’re a worldwide brand like Apple or a solopreneur like Medium.com blogger Benjamin Hardy. In either case, the process stays about the same.

Step 1 – Find an Online Affiliate Marketing Service Provider

Because each link needs to be unique to each affiliate marketer, you’ll want to use an online affiliate programs provider that offers a turnkey solution. The affiliate software handles everything from generating login credentials to creating user-specific links to hosting dashboards that help users track their commissions.

Some companies opt to set up a direct revenue share without using an affiliate service, but this presents a couple problems:

First, companies not using a dedicated affiliate service may lack time-saving automation that tracks everything for them. This means you might need to become more hands-on with the program, which can eat away at any profits you gain from affiliate marketing.

And second, you’ll be responsible for every aspect of your program, including finding affiliates to market your products. Starting an affiliate program is useless until you have people promoting you, and it can take time to build a strong network of marketers on your own.

Step 2 – Decide Which Products You Want to Include and How Much You’ll Pay

Amazon allows you to promote any item they sell, while other companies may only make certain products eligible for affiliate marketing commissions.

It’s up to you to decide which model makes sense for your business.

There are a couple things to consider here:

First, offering commission on every product you offer seems like a logical choice: the more products available, the more likely you are to make a sale, right?

Not exactly. The problem is that you task your affiliate marketers with choosing which items they want to promote. Imagine how difficult it would be to try to market every item on Amazon on your own blog! However, some affiliate marketers like the flexibility in having a huge inventory of products to choose from.

Another downside in marketing every product is having to figure out your profit on each item and then calculating how much you can afford to pay your affiliate marketers. You won’t want to offer top dollar commissions on an item where your margins are low. This isn’t necessarily a difficult task, but it can be time-consuming depending on how many products you’re hoping to promote.

There is no right or wrong answer here. Whichever route you choose, make sure it fits your business model and will help you reach your goals.

Step 3 – Build Your Affiliate Marketing Network

One of the best parts of partnering with an affiliate service provider is that there’s an existing database of marketers who are already promoting products for other companies. The magic starts happening immediately after you set up your affiliate marketing program, giving you the potential to see an ROI shortly after engaging in affiliate marketing

In addition, you can embed a sign-up form on your own website to recruit customers to promote you or email existing customers asking them to create an affiliate account.

When a new user signs up, they will receive a unique referral link so they can start marketing your products right away. Offering incentives like affiliate marketing to those who can attest to your products give you a competitive edge of sorts. They’re familiar with your company and can give their audience honest feedback, which could lead to higher conversions.

The LeadDyno Affiliate Network

Step 4 – Track Sales and Engagement

Once you begin your affiliate marketing programs, you’ll rarely have to do much else with it. However, it’s important you keep your finger on its pulse to see how the program is performing.

There are two things to look for here:

First, are you getting sales through your affiliates?

And second, do you have a high level of engagement from your affiliates?

Anyone can sign up to become an affiliate for your business, but enrollments aren’t what create sales. Engagement is.

If you rack up on the number of affiliates but aren’t seeing the results you expect, check in to see how often they’reusing their affiliate links and where they’re posting it. You might try sending encouraging email drip campaigns or useful resources to spur activity.

Just as you stay in touch with your customers, it’s equally important you stay top of mind with your affiliate marketers.

Wrap Up

Affiliate marketing can be one of the most cost-effective marketing strategies you’ll ever invest in, especially if you’re using a service to facilitate the entire program for you. Take a free tour of LeadDyno’s affiliate program today to see how easy it is to boost your revenue.