Merchants, Put Yourself in Affiliate Shoes

Yesterday, one of the co-founders of Affiliate Summit, Missy Ward, started her blog post [CORRECTION: per this comment, that was actually a guest blog post by Shawn Collins] with these words:

There is one thing that a lot of affiliate managers don’t know how to do, and that is to be an affiliate…

While there are arguments for and against affiliate program managers putting on affiliate hats, in principle, such an experience is indeed extremely valuable to any manager. The moment I read Missy’s above-quoted words, I remembered an email I received on Saturday, July 16. It read:

As you can see, this was an automatic notification generated by the affiliate network (thank you, ShareASale, for doing this for your affiliates). It is also important to point out that there was no other word from this merchant — not even a brief attempt to explain what was going on, and why their affiliates’ pay got cut in half… I didn’t lose anything here, as I’m simply monitoring, and not promoting here. But I can only imagine how the affiliates, who are actively marketing this merchant, felt…

Clearly, the affiliate program manager (or the merchant) which initiated this commission change (without even taking the time to notify their affiliates) misunderstands the implications of such a step. And, in part, precisely because they fail to put themselves in affiliate shoes.

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