A Month Later… Measuring the Success of Your Affiliate Program

You’ve launched your affiliate program. You’ve managed to get some traction with it. And now, almost a month later, you’re interested in knowing how successful your program has been, to date.

Of course, there is ample sales data available from past month which you can use to determine how much revenue you have generated in sales through your affiliates promotional efforts. But this metric alone isn’t enough to provide a holistic assessment of your affiliate program.

Let’s say you managed to generate $5000 through affiliate marketing. The majority of the traffic has come from 3 or 4 of your affiliates, while you have a team of 20 plus affiliates.

Would you call it a successful affiliate program?

Definitely you won’t.

So how do you measure the true success of your affiliate program?

It’s simple and easy.

Just like with every other program where you have a certain set of KPIs to assess its impact, for affiliate programs, you have few standard KPIs too. You can use them to measure the success of your affiliate program.

If you are familiar with the tracking of paid search or social media marketing campaigns, you might have already heard about a few of them.

Active Affiliates Rate

Active affiliates are those affiliates who generate clicks, leads or sales for your business. The definition of an active affiliate may vary from business to business.

For example, some businesses may classify an affiliate as an active affiliate if he or she manages to bring traffic to their website. Others may define active affiliates as those affiliates who directly generate sales.

To calculate your active affiliates rate, simply divide the number of active affiliates by the total number of affiliates enrolled in your program, and multiply the result by 100.

An active affiliate rate of above 10% is considered acceptable. However, you can always strive for improvement.

Conversion Rate

It is one of the most important metrics for assessing the performance of your affiliate program. Conversion rate basically tells what percentage of visitors being directed to your website by your affiliates are converting into customers.

A very high conversion rate (>10%) means either your affiliates are doing a great job or they are using some shady practice that can hurt your business. A conversion rate too low implies your affiliates are not sending targeted traffic.

Number of Sales Action

Number of sales action indicates the number of completed transactions. It’s as important as knowing the sales revenue metric.

Reversal Rate

Often ignored, reversal rate is the percentage of your orders that have been cancelled following an affiliate credited transaction. For example, a 5% reversal rate implies that 5 of 100 orders previously credited to your affiliates have been cancelled.

It’s normal to have a small reversal rate, but if is too high (more than 25%), it can deter new affiliates from joining your program.

How successful has been your affiliate program to date?

A BONUS read: Finding the Golden Goose: Affiliates That Multiply Your Sales Proportionately

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