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Dealing with Affiliates Search Engine Strategies Conference , December 2006 Chris Henger Vice President Affiliate Marketing Shopping & Promotions Loyalty/Rewards Community & Content Comparison Shopping Search Specialists Networks Affiliate Marketing Today

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dealing with affiliates

Dealing with Affiliates

Search Engine Strategies Conference, December 2006

Chris Henger

Vice President Affiliate Marketing

affiliate marketing today

Shopping & Promotions


Community & Content

Comparison Shopping

Search Specialists


Affiliate Marketing Today
  • More than 100 million web sites worldwide, many with the potential to become an affiliate publisher
  • A significant source of sales for online retailers
    • 2-20% of online sales
  • Performics classifies publishers according to business model
search is a primary traffic driver for affiliate publishers
Search is a Primary Traffic Driver for Affiliate Publishers
  • Opportunity
    • Affiliates enable an advertise to dominate the page
  • Challenge
    • Managing the brand and the message
    • Enforcing restrictions
    • Controlling CPCs
affiliate search specialists dominate the page
Affiliate Search Specialists – Dominate the Page
  • Expert at natural and/or paid search
  • Opportunistically build new pages or entire websites “on-the-fly”:
    • Seasonal
    • Category
    • Product
    • Payout
    • Building a “sticky” destination site is not necessarily the objective
  • Able to quickly adjust and adapt to ever changing engine policies, advertiser policies, algorithms, competition, etc.
  • Willing to spend $$ to make $$
    • Put their money at risk
  • Strong engine relationships and access to tools (e.g. , API’s)
  • Often top performers
the search specialists wish list
The Search Specialists “Wish List “
  • Authorization and guidelines to bid on trademarks/brand names
  • Ability to direct link to an advertiser’s site
    • Using their landing page URL as the display URL
  • Ability to send traffic to domain that contains advertisers’ brand
    • e.g.,
  • For lead gen programs, the capability to host the form on their own domain
  • Authorization letter to search engines providing permission to use advertiser’s brand in ad title and copy
  • Ability to build links quickly and flexibly (offline BYOL, data feeds)
lessons learned
Lessons Learned
  • There is a balance between advertiser interests and the affiliate’s need to drive traffic
  • Affiliate publishers are often better at focusing on conversion than advertisers
    • Given the proper brand guidelines, an affiliate can monetize cpc traffic better than an advertiser
      • If they can pay for the CPC and the advertiser can pay only for a commission on the sale, why not let the affiliate bid?
  • Set guidelines, communicate and monitor for compliance
  • Maintain a feedback loop with affiliates who can shape guidelines for the future
  • Provide best practices in search marketing for affiliates
    • Best performing keywords
    • Best selling products
    • Custom creative
  • Measure the impact across channels