That is one of the most common questions Merchants ask themselves when it comes to having an Affiliate Program.
- What type of value will it provide our program?
- What type of coupon/deal/promotions should we allow?
- Are there any ‘quality’ coupon sites out there that will drive incremental revenue?
- How can I avoid sites advertising promotions I didn’t give them?
All great questions, and one’s you SHOULD be asking when creating your Affiliate Program. Because there are so many ways for affiliates to participate in coupon advertising, you need to ask all of those questions to come to the best possible solution for your program. The actions you decide to take is totally up to you, but it’s good to know all of your options.
First and foremost, a common inquiry from most new merchants who receive many applications upon launching is addressed in a previous post HERE, where Sarah outlines common reasons why coupon affiliates are the first to apply to your program.
This leads me to my next point…
All coupon sites are bad!
A misconception that I hear regularly from Merchants. That’s like saying ‘All carbs are bad’! Not necessarily and some can provide great benefits! The keys are:
- Knowing which will provide positive results for your program
- Putting in the time to learn about the benefits they provide
- Creating the right promotions
- Using them to reach out to a market you wouldn’t have otherwise
Contrary to popular belief, Coupon and Deal sites can drive new customers to your site. Due to coupon-driven consumer behavior, many consumers are loyal shoppers to their favorite coupon sites and will always be a place these people shop. In stating that, there is a way to keep these coupon sites in your program and reward them for sending you new customers that provide incremental value.
We have the option in our Personalized Commission Rules (My Account >> Edit Settings >> Manage Advanced Commission Structures) to set this very rule up!
Another point to make are all of the different types of promotional options you have available to you. You can post:
- coupons (with or without codes)
- site wide sales
- product specific deals/sales
If you decide to participate in these types of promotional methods, you can list those in the Coupons & Deals section within the interface (My Creatives >> Post Coupons & Deals). Here you can list the exact terms for that promotion you’re offering.
So what to do regarding coupon affiliate participation in your program? The action you decide to take is totally up to you! I would say though, the “best practice” for ALL Merchants who decide to work with coupon & promotional sites would be to establish a program agreement policy for what kind of coupon affiliate action you would like restricted so it is clear to all affiliates exactly what you will and will not allow.