Last Updated: December 2023
E-commerce is getting more personalized than ever. From customized product recommendations to targeted ads on social media, brands have been leveraging online user activity to drive conversion and engagement. However, the truth is that generating leads and converting them into customers is a difficult process, especially in the highly competitive e-commerce industry.
The cost of customer acquisition is increasing steadily and companies are always on the lookout for ways to improve ROI. By including affiliate marketing in your marketing mix, you can tap new audiences through a network of partners.
By offering competitive commissions to affiliates, e-commerce companies can incentivize them to promote your product on a wider scale. What’s more, affiliate marketing can also open up opportunities for your store to cross-sell products belonging to other businesses and split revenues.
The result: higher average order value and customer engagement.
It should come as no surprise that the vast majority of e-commerce brands use affiliate marketing. According to eMarketer, affiliate marketing revenues touched $6.4 billion in 2019. Affiliate marketing is not just for giants like Amazon and eBay. Small online stores have also been getting good results from it. There are many reasons for this. For one, no upfront investment is required for a small e-commerce brand to set up an affiliate program other than its website.
If you use WordPress, you can even add affiliate marketing features to your store for free via plug-ins. Secondly, it is also highly flexible in that affiliate offers can be modified instantly. All of these attributes make affiliate marketing very attractive to small businesses.
Here’s how Affiliate Marketing can help your e-commerce business
If you are just getting started in the e-commerce business, you are probably wondering whether affiliate marketing would really be useful. Here are a few reasons why affiliate marketing is worth investing in:
Growth in traffic:
Higher traffic directly translates into better engagement and conversion for your e-commerce store. For sure, every click on an affiliate link will not result in a sale. However, once a visitor lands on your website, the likelihood of them checking out other products, discounts, and offers increases significantly. For example, by using heat maps, you can identify the sections on a page that users are spending the most time on.
This can help you optimize the content or visuals in that area to make it more appealing to potential customers in the future. For example, by adding new details to your product description or additional photographs of your product, you can increase the odds of a sale over a period of time.
Higher brand awareness:
The higher your brand awareness, the lower your cost of marketing. Most e-commerce businesses invest in multiple channels such as email marketing, content marketing, blogs, and social media in order to be found by potential customers. Once a lead converts into a prospect, he or she is easier for you to engage with via landing pages, white papers, etc. It goes without saying that the cost of marketing increases with every new channel.
With affiliate marketing, you can promote your products to millions of customers via multiple affiliate partners. Thus your association with affiliate partners provides increased credibility to your product, boosting sales and engagement.
Affiliate marketing commissions are performance-based. This means that you do not need to pay if the visitor does not end up buying. This means that every penny that you spend on your affiliate network is accounted for in terms of tangible returns. The cost of tracking affiliate links and commissions is also less than most other types of e-commerce marketing. By opting for an affiliate network, you can save on the costs associated with setting up and managing an affiliate platform in-house.
Track performance in real-time:
Thanks to automated affiliate tracking software, it is easier than ever for brands to track clicks and conversions. It integrates performance data across an entire network and presents it to you in an easy to understand format. This gives you the flexibility to assign best-selling products to high-performing affiliates increasing your revenues over a period of time. If the performance of your affiliates is lagging behind, you can add new incentives such as discounts, free subscriptions, etc. to increase their motivation.
Depending on the product category, affiliate commissions can range from anywhere between 10 and 30%. This means that you can protect your margins while continuing to attract quality affiliate partners. In case you are unable to match the commission structures of your competitors, you can develop a tiered commission structure with a combination of commission and rewards. Affiliate marketing can thus help you improve ROI and protect your margins in a sustainable manner.
Affiliate marketing can help you get more traffic and sales. It can also be a great channel from the brand awareness point of view. However, affiliate marketing only brings a potential customer to your landing page. From that point on, it all depends on the user experience of your store. This is all critical when the customer proceeds to checkout. There is nothing more upsetting than a visitor that abandons a purchase after clicking on an affiliate link. After all the effort invested may seem like a waste. This is where customer support has a vital role to play.
For example, a live chat/voice support option on the checkout page can increase your conversion rate significantly. If you are not sure where to begin in terms of setting up a customer support team, partnering with experts like Helplama can save you both time and money. Our team of skilled customer support professionals is trained to drive cross-sells, up-sells, and referrals.
Also, you can try the Helplama Helpdesk – the customer service software that can help you automate and scale your customer support.
With our customized price plans, you get unmatched value for money. Contact us today for more information.