October 17, 2016

Five ways to prepare your affiliate programme for Christmas

We have less than 68 days until Christmas!

Offers for key periods and dates are confirmed, exposure with publishers has been booked and you think you are ready? Think again! Booking the right exposure is vital for this season, but preparation is more than just booking exposure. We have put together five key areas to look at to ensure you have a successful Q4.1. Banner and imageryDon’t forget to provide banner and imagery that reflects seasonality and special events. Whilst banners may not be the key revenue drivers, there are still numerous websites that will be able to use them and drive traffic to your site. Therefore it is vital that you provide both generic sets of imagery as well as offer / event related banners. Providing lifestyle imagery where possible for bloggers and content sites to use is also very useful.2. Text linksDouble check if all provided text links are still valid. Remove and replace outdated links with newer messaging reflecting offers from this time of the year. Make sure you set generous expiration dates for these links and that you update them in a timely manner.3. Product feedEnsure your product feed is up to date and meets the standards of your chosen affiliate network. If you can try to improve the quality and quantity of information given within the feed (retail or sales) price is now more relevant than ever. Additional information such as delivery costs and special offers can be used on shopping portals to attract customers.Spending time ensuring a working product feed will also help improve partnerships with shopping portals, content sites and bloggers. Product level information is vital for these publisher types so the better the quality of information and imagery you provide through your feed, the better your sales will be.4. PaymentsDo you still have some outstanding publisher payments? Now is the time to clear these bills. First, publishers deserve to be paid for their work on time. You wouldn’t want to wait 3 months to be paid by your customers, neither do your publishers. Paying bills on time is not just best practice, but also a sign of respect for each other’s contribution that comes with success in this business. Also, keep in mind, that if you build up outstanding amounts, publishers might refuse further placements – the last thing you want this season is not being able to promote your brand on your top revenue drivers!5. CommunicationWe cannot say it enough – keep talking to your publishers! Let them know about what’s going on with your brand - news, updates and plans. Send out regular newsletters tailored to their needs, including product copy and promotional event information. Use all mediums possible, from newsletters, emails, phone calls and meetings; treat your publishers like your friends!With the above best practices in place, you will be ready for Christmas. But don’t relax too much – keep planning ahead – it’s only 75 days until New Year!Catherine West, Affiliate Account Manager

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