Learning Objective: Grow a successful affiliate marketing program.
At Your Home Supply, I acted as the Affiliate Marketing Program manager and director.
To summarize what “affiliate marketing” is, you may think of it as commission-based advertising. I create banners and links as a merchant and offer them to a network of publishers. They, in turn, display those banners and links on their own websites. When a customer of their website clicks on our link, they are taken to our site, Your Home Supply. If they purchase something on our site, that sale technically resulted from the customer clicking on our link on the publisher website and is considered to be a “qualified sale.” The publisher then receives a commission based on that sale.
One of my learning objectives was to grow a successful affiliate marketing program. I had never done anything like this before, nor had I heard of affiliate marketing before I started working on this project.
My duties as manager and director of the program is to design and create banners and links to offer publishers in the LinkShare network. I work with publishers to develop a program that will equally benefit both parties. I create and monitor offers extended to the publishing network both privately and publicly. I screen all publishers that apply to our program and approve those that I deem appropriate and useful. As of the 6th of December, I operate and manage over 1100 publishers.
Each month I pay the publisher commissions which means that I must first check and reconcile the sales to make sure to fraudulent activity has taken place and each sale is legitimate. I also field any marketing questions, concerns, and conflicts that may arise regarding the affiliate program.
I have gauged my success based on the traffic driven to our site as well as the number of sales resulting from affiliate links.
In the 5 months that our affiliate program has been operational, we have made close to 125% of our initial investment in almost 2600 visits to our site. Even subtracting the start-up costs of this program, we have still made a considerable profit.