How Affiliate Links And Promos Affect Your Affiliate

What is a "promo"? A "promo" in an affiliate system is an online advertisement unit published on an affiliate web page, an affiliate email, or in any offline document. It must contain a link or links pointing to the merchant website. Promos are also known as "marketing materials", "promotional links", "marketing creatives" or simply "links". What is its role in an affiliate system? To understand the role of promos in an affiliate system we must review how an affiliate system works. Merchant sets up promos containing clickable link(s) in the affiliate’s system. Affiliate chooses some promos and publishes them on his website page(s). Affiliate site visitors, while visiting affiliate site, eventually click on the promo link and go to merchant site. Some visitors buy directly from merchant site and the affiliate gets his commission. In an affiliate system, it is the promo that does all the work to attract and fetch visitors (future customers) to the merchant site. What is an affiliate link? An affiliate link is a link inside a promo pointing to the merchant web page. An affiliate visitor (the prospective buyer of the merchant) must click this link to go to the desired merchant web page where the visitor is tagged by the affiliate software. What are different types of affiliate links? Which one is best? Any promo must contain one of the following four types of affiliate links: Standard links (redirected and with tracking string) URL rewritten but redirected (also known as SEO links) Deep links (direct but with tracking string) Natural links (direct and no tracking string) 1 is the least SEO friendly, and 4 is the most SEO friendly. It is interesting to note that so-called SEO links are not that much more SEO friendly. However, merchants will get maximum SEO benefit if more affiliates use 3 or 4. Big shot affiliates may simply deny to place redirected links (1& 2) lest they lose credibility to Google. Is a promo and an affiliate link synonymous? No, they are not, although sometimes they are used synonymously. A promo must contain at least one link pointing to the merchant website. It may contain multiple links also. Say the HTML ads or custom promo contains multiple links. However, text links, banners, and light boxes usually contain only one link. What are standard types of promos? All third party affiliate software provides a standard set of promos. These include: Text links – these are simple anchor texts with catchy captions pointing towards a specific merchant sales page Image Links — these are simple image links with an attractive look and caption pointing to a specific merchant sales page GIF Banners — these are similar to image links but they are animated GIF images Flash Banners — these are like banners but the source file is a flash file and not an image file Light Boxes – these are a combination of small and large images. When the small image is clicked upon, the enlarged image is opened in an attractive light box style Static Text/HTML content – these are basically static Text or HTML content with one or more links pointing to different sales pages on the merchant website Page Peels – these are also a combination of small and large images but are typically placed at the top corner of a web page and opened in an attractive unique style. What is a custom promo? Apart from the standard set of promos, some affiliate software supports custom promos. Normally custom promos are more powerful as they are developed to solve a particular custom merchant requirement. However, custom promos always needs custom programming and you must have separate budget for it. Which type of promos bring more affiliate sales and why? To make your affiliates happy you must have the capability of setting up all type of promos. Different affiliates like different types of promos. Affiliates with less Internet experience are always drawn to attractive, bright promos and so they prefer banners, light boxes, page peels, images, etc. Mature affiliates with a fair amount of traffic to their sites may like bright promos but never bother to publish those in their sites. There are three valid reasons for it. They do not want to kill their own brand image by placing a banner of another site that may suppress original content. Attractive promos are always less SEO friendly than text links A large promo stops them from placing other promos from different merchants on their site page, which would result in a reduction of potential revenue. Promising affiliates may be attracted to instant linking mechanisms to create quick text links. However, when deciding which promo to select, the conversion rate and the type of links used must play an important role in the decision making. Once affiliates become more experienced, they are likely to prefer natural links or at least direct deep links. Custom promos can play a big role in multiplying affiliate sales if you have the capacity to develop them in accordance with the requirements of your mega affiliates. Although the attractive promos (banners, light boxes, page peels) look good in the affiliate area. you should not be surprised if they end up accounting for less than 5% of your total affiliate sales. Are popular affiliate software products powered with advanced linking tools? No. Most affiliate software products provide deep or natural linking options. The same is true for the Promos (Marketing Creative). However Euraffiliates Affiliate Software is powered with all type of advance linking tools including affiliate defined & custom promos. Read more articles on affiliate marketing at About the Author: Lutfal Hoque is basically an MBA in marketing. He joined his career as sales professional in 1996. After 3 years he started his own web & e-Commerce development business in 1999. He played the affiliate marketing consultant role of a big UK e-commerce site for over 4 years using his own developed affiliate tracking software. This has helped him a lot in getting deeper understanding of affiliate marketing and affiliate marketing software. 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