Using Affiliate Program Analytics to Optimize Its Performance (Part III)
This metric is critical to gauging the success of your affiliate program. For instance, traffic that fails to transform could indicate affiliate fraud. Sometimes, affiliates make untrue promises or force clicks to move traffic to merchant websites.
While in theory, traffic denotes sales potential and exposure. In practice, you do not want your brand linked with deceitful practices and activities. By monitoring traffic, you could spot bad affiliates and take steps to discipline them or bar them from your program.
Traffic failing to convert could also signal problems with your own merchant website. Perhaps it loads gradually, and visitors don’t wait for it. Maybe the conversion failure is because of poor quality graphics and content, problematic checkout process, or high costs.
Also, it could be because of affiliate mistakes. It is the program manager’s task to push affiliates to performance. If you fail, affiliates who don’t see results will ultimately stop marketing you.
Besides traffic, you also want to watch impressions, specifically interactions with your content and feedback on your services and products. Bad impressions could harm your reputation. Positive ones can translate into more sales and/or leads as well as exposure. Your aim is to create positive impressions. You can pursue this goal on three different levels, by:
- Enhancing your website
- Perfecting your merchant offer
- Rewarding good affiliates, enlisting more of them and deterring and penalizing affiliate fraud.
Checking traffic and impressions will also help you gauge the effectiveness of your optimization and enhancement efforts.
When it comes to sales, you want to pay particular attention to transaction origins and transaction figures (new and existing customers). Your obvious aim is to urge affiliates to push a high volume of transactions and/or leads and send new business to you.