“Out of clutter, find simplicity.” ~Einstein
One of the most challenging aspects for an Agency in managing multiple Merchant programs is keeping up with Affiliate applications.
There are two issues that an Agency faces with Affiliate applications. The first is the sheer number of applications. The second is reviewing each individual application to determine the fit of the Affiliate to the program. This can result in the approval process taking a great deal of time and manpower, which can lead to frustration for the Merchant and also the Affiliate.
Never fear, ShareASale has a solution to the Affiliate application conundrum.
The above image shows the Custom Approval Rules page in our Network. This tool allows rules to be created for the Merchant program.
The rules are based on a combination of data we have collected from the Affiliate, such as their promotional methods in their initial application, as well as their feedback from other Merchants.
The idea here is that each Merchant program has specific types of Affiliates that they would or would not prefer, so it should be feasible to set up these pre-approval, pre-pend, or pre-decline rules to automatically take an action on certain Affiliate applications.
The image below shows an example build of a rule. With these rules, the user can define various parameters and even determine the priority of the rule.
Once the rules have been created, they will continually remain on the right hand side of the screen under the name that has been assigned to them.
In terms of Agency managed Merchant programs, the Agency may have a great Affiliate in one client’s program and would like to ensure the Affiliate is approved for all of their client programs on ShareASale.
There is the ability to add pre-approvals for all programs within the Agency login portal under the Affiliates tab.
The idea here is really that most Agencies keep detailed records of their favorite and also least favorite Affiliates. With this feature, it is now possible to make it simpler to expedite Affiliate applications for multiple programs by simply creating rules in advance based on this data that has been collected over time.
It also serves as a great way to communicate this information to the entire Agency team without a multitude of conversations or emails.
Another great aspect of the Agency login is the ability to use the Agency API to automatically set or remove an Affiliate Approval rule. So, there are two options to create the rules. There are a couple of images of those two options below.
In addition to pre-approval rules, there is another tool that is great for inviting in Affiliates who are high priority or may, for some reason, not be approved under the normal ShareASale application review process.
This is the Pre-Approval waiver tool located here. An image of the tool is located below.
The most important aspects to remember about this tool is that the Merchant must read and agree to the disclosure. This is because the Affiliate will bypass the normal screening process and ShareASale will “lock” the Affiliate to the Merchant program.
Once the terms have been agreed to the text box expands. In order for this to work, the website and email address must be entered into the corresponding text fields.
We have also added in the ability to add the Affiliate to a group and / or customize their commission or cookie length.
These are the 3 most helpful features to expedite the Affiliate application process, alleviating the need to put as many man hours into reviewing individual Affiliate applications and creating a better onboarding experience for Affiliates.