When asked about the avenues via which they like to find out about new affiliate programs, affiliates repeatedly point to affiliate network websites (and network-based directories) as one of their preferred methods of what I call “passive affiliate recruitment” (i.e. when they find you, as opposed to you reaching out to them).
Per 2013 Affiliate Summit’s AffStat Report, for example, 38% of affiliates said they search for new programs within the “Affiliate or CPA network website:”
Turning to the results of AffiliateBenchmarks 2013 Global Affiliate Questionnaire, we see an even higher percentage: 44.7%:
Here are three practical ways which will help you improve the visibility and findability of your affiliate program, regardless of the affiliate network:
1. Logo or 88×31 Micro Bar
It is always better to have one than run “logoless.” In certain instances, the affiliate network will use the first uploaded 88×31 button/banner for your logo. So, if on ShareASale you have not uploaded a micro bar (and make it a good one when you do!), you will not show any “logo” in the network directory:
2. Key Terms/Words
Optimize these to include not only the key words you want affiliates to find you by, but also using competitors’ names for key terms (especially those that run affiliate programs on the same network). So, for example, when on Commission Junction I search for “expedia” besides Expedia’s affiliate program I also see listings for Tingo, Aqua Hotels and Resorts, Pretigia Europe, CheapFlights.com, Booking Buddy (clearly, they all use the competitor’s name for a key word), and even SpareFoot Storage (don’t ask why):
3. Coupons & Deals
Nearly every affiliate network has a coupon feed of some sorts. Besides this, some have an on-site coupon database (like ShareASale’s “Coupons and Deals Database”) or a monthly newsletter dedicated to promos and deals specifically (like Commission Junction’s “CJ Monthly”). Even if you do not have, or do not desire to have, coupons, you can get a “Free Shipping over $X” type deals in there.
The best part about the above three methods of affiliate program visibility optimization is that in most cases they will not cost a penny extra!
So what are you waiting for? Go implement them right away!! It won’t take you more than a few minutes per method.