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AFFILIATES AND SOFTWARE A WINNING TEAM?
<P>Affiliate software integration is more than how you upload a piece of software into your server or how this digital code integrates into your website. Integration needs to look at how the affiliate software integrates into your entire online business. Taking this holistic approach to your software and business is much more important than how any one piece of software or one aspect of your business operates in isolation.</P>
<P>I'm sure you know the old saying, " there's no I in team". Well, this is true for your business as well. Your business needs to operate like a "team" and form a system, and your system needs software that meets the real world needs of your business. And since the affiliate software integration in your business is the backbone of your affiliate sales army, you need to ensure it meets the real world needs of not only your business but the business needs of the affiliates you have than want to attract.</P>
So here's a short list of real world considerations for examination: <BR>
<LI><STRONG>Multiple Websites / Businesses</STRONG> - Unless you're simply not trying, it's very unlikely that you stop at 1 website and/or 1 online business. Make sure your system will allow for multiple domains and multiple affiliate programs without having to purchase a 2nd or 3rd or 4th software license.
<LI><STRONG>Paying Your Affiliates</STRONG> - Since you need to pay them monthly or possibly weekly, you'll need a simple to use payment system to keep this workload down.
<LI><STRONG>Affiliate Payment Reports For You</STRONG> - For accurate accounting you'll need a simple and automatic process of creating and maintaining payment history.
Affiliate Payment Reports For Your Affiliates - As an affiliate marketer, it's almost as important to know you were paid as the actual payment itself. Knowing your future revenue is also critically important, especially when recurring payments / recurring commissions are involved.
Affiliate Sales Trends< - Which affiliate has sales going up and which has their sales rate going down? You must have a system that highlights these trends for you so you can spot the <I>"up and comer"</I> and give them special attention while also nipping any sales slides in the bud.
Super-Affiliates - There's a huge difference between a super-affiliate and a run of the mill affiliate. In fact, most people would rather have 2 super-affiliates than 2,000 regular affiliates because 2 "supers" will outsell 2,000 of the regulars so you need a system that helps you attract and retain these "supers". This system needs to be built in and it needs to have special reporting specifically targeted towards "supers".
"Secret" Custom Landing Pages - It's common for a super-affiliate to want to market your product differently from the masses. This is often what makes them "super" so you need to be able to accommodate custom landing pages within an existing affiliate program and you need to be able to do this in a manner that is transparent to the others.
There are many other items to consider from a technical side of the equation but my goal here was to address the business side of how the best affiliate programs need to integrate into your online business systems. Because as you know, there are many software products that have amazing technical standards written on the box but fall flat in real world problem solving, business building or are simply too difficult to handle by anyone outside the IT department.
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