The 10 Biggest Myths in Affiliate Marketing

In every culture there are them – the myths. The Duden also describes a myth as “a mostly blurred irrational notion”  . We also observe irrational ideas in online marketing when we are confronted with a wide variety of questions and claims about our specialist areas. Let’s try to pick up the myths and mistakes in affiliate marketing and unravel the threads.

1) Affiliate marketing is just “something for the big ones”

In fact, an affiliate program can only become economically successful if the online shop can already demonstrate a certain level of traffic. Because the more a shop is known, the easier it is, of course, to generate strong partners.

However, affiliate marketing has long ceased to be a playground on which only the really big shops are bustling.

To start an affiliate program that also pays off, we recommend a shop size of at least 20,000 users per month. But that’s just a first “thumb size”. Factors such as industry, products, average net cash value must always be included in the evaluation, whether an application via affiliate marketing makes sense or whether the awareness level should be strengthened by other online channels beforehand.

2) Affiliate marketing annoys the customers

“Affiliate marketing – there are always annoying banners everywhere ?!”

Yes and no. While it is true that in affiliate marketing mainly banners are used as advertising material to attract potential customers to the shop page . Every user has determined to be on one page and wanted to close his eyes with a bling-bling. But that is no longer the rule. Affiliate marketing is not distracting if the following points are considered:

  • Design of banners
    • Appealing product images
    • Put USPs of the shop in the foreground
    • As little text as possible
    • Little ” Bling-Bling “
  • In the choice of partners on banner networks & Co. waive
  • When using Retargetern vote before the key data, for example, how often the user should be confronted with the banners (keyword “Frequency Capping”

3) Affiliate Marketing Brings Fast Sales

If a merchant chooses to promote their store through affiliate marketing, the above sentence may quickly emerge. Why not, you could say at this point. For the other online marketing channels, it works (mostly). Unfortunately it is false. In affiliate marketing, it just takes some time to acquire enough partners, sign up for the program, and embed the ads on their site. Here are now real people as partners active and no pure technology – ie just press the button and it works, is not possible with affiliate.

If the application is also made via retargeting , sufficient data must first be collected about the users in order to be able to “populate” potential buyers with the necessary information.

How long it takes on average to an affiliate program is profitable, ultimately depends strongly on the advertised products , the partners and the support from the affiliate program. The latter can also lead to the next error:

4) Affiliate marketing is a “self-runner”

Constant adjustments to the market also require that the affiliate program is always kept up to date. Among other things, this includes keeping an eye on the competition regarding affiliate commission payments . If there is a lot more competition , it can be fast that my partners will switch to the competitor, otherwise they should not see any further incentives to stay with my program.

If the banner with which my shop is advertised outdated because the products displayed thereon is no longer up to date are, the click rate is expected to fall and fewer customers will come into my shop and purchase complete.

If the affiliate feed is not kept up to date, retarders and price comparators play out products that are already no longer available.

5) As many publishers guarantee high sales

That sounds logical. Is it partly too. Of course, the more publishers, the greater the chance of generating a high turnover.

Here, however, also applies: keep your eyes open when choosing a partner!

It is no coincidence that companies, for example, make their living with SEM monitoring tools to protect them from fraud-afflicted partners (brand fires).

Therefore, we recommend that you check each publisher application individually rather than accepting all applications on a flat-rate basis. The quality of a partner can also decide on the number of sales. Dear a few partners less in the affiliate program and for high traffic and high quality partner sites !

As is often the case, the 80/20 rule, namely that 20 percent of the partners make up the majority of sales. Smaller partners are less involved in the generation of sales and often do not regularly .

6) Communication unnecessary? I pay the publisher!

The fact that as a merchant you get every partner that you would like to have for promoting your shop is in fact often a misconception . In popular and high-traffic sites, it has long become typical that the merchant “courtship” for the inclusion of his shop with the partner or even “the pants down” must by granting him insight into the key figures ofhis online shop.

The communication in an existing cooperation should always be characterized by partnership and transparency: changes are made to the affiliate program and the partners are not informed on time or not at all? An approach that is strongly discouraged!

Because: Every day there are new affiliate programs that are pushing the market. Forced publishers may be looking for a new partner program after a faux pas of the merchant and then rather support the competition.

7) Actions in Affiliate Marketing = time and waste of money?

And exactly this error builds on point 6. Often, promotions in affiliate marketing are not started because the shop owner believes that only the amount of the commission is crucial for the partner.

Although the amount of commission for many publishers is an important indicator for the application of an affiliate program, the bond to the Merchant plays an important role beyond. Partners love affiliate programs where there is something “on top”. Be it the raffle of a failed profit or the increase in commission in a given period to strengthen the sale .

If the merchant has failed to comply with their communications obligations , or if the margin has to reduce the amount of commission , a stronger bond may help the publisher maintain the partnership.

I have already explained in an earlier text more about the advantages that actions in affiliate marketing offer and tips on how to implement them .

8) Blogs generate the most (affiliate) sales

This is actually a myth . Understandably, blogs are often at the top of the wish list of merchants when choosing partners. But winning over blogs as an affiliate partner has become more complicated over the years. Some bloggers want to keep their blog “clean” and reject the publishing of advertisements. Other bloggers know exactly how in demand their site is and even offer special media packages for the application. However, you have to go deeper into the bag than you have actually set the terms for the affiliate program.

Accordingly, the number of sales that are generated on blog pages, compared to sales, for example, via ReTargeter , coupon partners and price comparison can be obtained, often less.

 9) Coupon publishers and price comparators are only suitable for low-cost products

Both known coupon sites and well-known price comparishers have traffic that should not be underestimated.

It pays off to place high-quality and higher-priced products at voucher sites and price comparisons in order to be able to address a new target group and potential new customers. Often, the big coupon sites also have their own newsletter and Facebook followers who follow new campaigns closely.

Those who fear that higher priced products could wear off should pay attention not to publish vouchers too often, but to link the rebate with special events, eg public holidays or lower sales phases . Thus, one can both make existing customers happy and retain them as well as attract new customers.

10) No one needs retargeting

Oh but! There is no better way to talk to customers who are already in the shop, but have not shown willing to buy again. And to optimally complement retargeting, a combination with pretargeting is recommended: Here, potential customers who have not yet visited the shop, but have similar interests and buying characteristics as existing customers, banners play.

Of course, it is important to be in close cooperation with the partner, in this case the retargeter, so that the ” nerve factor”  mentioned in point two can not arise.