Affiliate Program For Shopify Stores: Here’s Why You Need It + Steps

An affiliate program is one of the best marketing strategies you can implement with your Shopify store in order to get the most profit percentage.

With Shopify, it’s quite easy to add an affiliate program with the various apps readily available to install and use right away.

Related topic: Pros And Cons Of Shopify: Why You Need Shopify If You Are A Beginner

What Is An Affiliate Program?

Savvy entrepreneurs take advantage of every aspect of marketing especially the ones that do not require a lot of money to spend. I’m talking about Affiliate marketing, where people promote your business and earn a commission in every sale or lead.

It’s realistically attainable to grow a business from the ground to the top by using affiliate programs. Read this case study about a six-figure business made possible by affiliate marketing.

An affiliate program is a marketing approach that does not need a hefty amount of money to be able to generate sales. It usually takes a small amount to promote the program – which is the most important measure in order for it to work.

The people who join and promote your business or products are called affiliates. Affiliates can range from regular people to influencers with a large following on social media.

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This program can really boost your brand awareness goal as many people are attracted to the idea of making money without investing anything. Well, technically, they would only invest in “efforts” to make their followers engage and buy the product.

Related topic: Solid Influencer Marketing Strategy To Double Your Sales

An affiliate program is also known as a referral program. Affiliates include their referral link every time they promote your product so that when people click on that specific link and buy, they earn a commission.

Common terms

Business = brand, merchant, seller, creator, retailer, vendor, company

Affiliates – referrer, publisher, influencer

How much does an affiliate plan cost on Shopify?

Affiliate Program For Shopify

Affiliate program expenses vary depending on what application you use. The average that I find these app developers charge is around $30 per month. Most of them have an upgrade option to be able to use more advance features.

It’s hard to measure the quality of services and features these apps provide without trying them out. The main reason that the app developers offer a trial period so you can see it for yourself and compare it with the others.

Shopify Affiliate Apps Comparison

Shopify AppPlan CostTrial Period
AffiliatlyStarts at $16/month30 days
Refersion$89/month14 days
AffiloStarts at $24.90/month14 days
LeadDyno Starts at $29/month30 days
AAAStarts at $9/month5 days
Simple AffiliateStarts at $14/month 30 days
Secomapp Starts at $19.99/month Free Plan available
Goaffpro $24/month Free Plan available

Tip: Be wise in deciding with the Affiliate app to use because you can’t easily disengage with it due to the data that you will lose.

My jewelry store has an affiliate program since day one. And honestly, I have tried four apps before discovering the one that best suits the way our affiliate program works.

Do not be afraid to try them and ask the developers of their plans for a future feature release. Most of them are in the stage where they figure out improvements and new functionalities.

Alternative to Shopify affiliate apps

Aside from using applications to manage an affiliate program, you can also sign-up for companies that are already running affiliate marketing solutions.

Make use of these websites for affiliate marketing:
  1. CJ by Conversant
  2. RevenueWire
  3. ShareASale
  4. FlexOffers
  5. AvantLink
  6. AffiliateNetwork
  7. Rakuten
  8. Moreniche

How does it work?

Affiliate program basically works by inviting people or influencers to join and sign up for the program. They then grab the creatives and personal links to use in promoting. When someone clicks on their link and buy, they get a portion of the sale.

It sounds pretty easy and smooth but be warned that you need to be on top of your customer service to make it effective. You need to consider your affiliates as your partners to have that sociable relationship flowing.

In addition, you need to deliver your promises because when trouble comes up, it’s not only you but also them that are put in the hot seat.

Implementation steps:

  1. Decide on the commission percentage that you are willing to pay in each sale made from your affiliate.
  2. Install an affiliate program application from the app store.
  3. Customize and load the app with the necessary implementations such as commission rates, banners, custom links, coupon codes, policies and functionalities to use.
  4. Create an exclusive affiliate Facebook group to easily disseminate announcements.

You can apply commissions based on individual products. However, if you don’t want further headaches, just use a general rate for every order regardless of the products and total amount.

Tip: Add a bonus to a certain payout amount to encourage the affiliates to push their efforts (ex: $10 bonus when $100 in payout is reached).

Pros and cons of Affiliate Program

Shopify affiliate program advantages outweigh disadvantages based on my experience running the said marketing tactic for more than a year consistently.

Related topic: Stay At Home Mom Income: How I Made $43,000 In 2019

Affiliate Program For Shopify

Pros

  • Easy to implement – with the help of the apps, running this marketing model is a breeze.
  • Low-risk – it only takes a monthly subscription fee to keep the program running and you can discontinue anytime.
  • Scale with $0 spend – have your existing affiliates invite their friends to join as an affiliate for a direct level referral.
  • Earn a maximum profit – unlike advertising, your campaign can keep running without generating a sale, with affiliate marketing, a set portion of the sale can only be taken after a successful sale.
  • SEO advantage – affiliates posting links to social media sites, blogs, coupon websites, etc draws in more attention from search engines.
  • Saves a lot of your valuable time – affiliate marketing works like an autopilot by letting your affiliates do the work – no ads to supervise and tweak.
  • Brand trust increases – most of the time, the affiliate’s followers buy the product because of their trust. Your brand utilizes the existing trusting relationship with their followers.
  • Unlimited possibilities – you can be surprised how a single affiliate can bring in a huge amount of sales.

Tip: Raise your concerns to the app developers for the issues that you can’t solve on your end.

Cons

  • Over-promotion – some affiliates can make mistakes by promising something that is not existing in your promotions (ex: posting a coupon that already expired).
  • Redundant questions – there will be affiliates who frequently send emails with the same questions.
  • Problems with the app – you will definitely encounter issues with sale tracking, member sign-up concerns, etc.
  • Affiliate company costs – most of the companies listed above require a start-up amount before you can create a campaign.

Tip: Make your affiliate policies clear beforehand.

Recommendation

When it comes to the affiliate program apps in Shopify, I highly recommend Goaffpro. From the trial and error that I did, this app stands out with the flexibility it offers.

Goaffpro allows you, the admin, to fix the errors of your customers or affiliates such as when a customer forgot to click on the affiliate’s link and it resulted in an unrecorded sale.

Affiliate Program For Shopify

Affiliate marketing has made businesses millions and ordinary people millionaires. 

-Bo Bennet

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