How To Start An eCommerce Affiliate Program

How to start an eCommerce affiliate program

Developing an eCommerce affiliate program is a low-cost way of expanding a consumer base for online merchants. If you’re brand new to an affiliate program, you’re going to need an easy-to-understand guide and helpful tips to run your program effectively.


Why should eCommerce businesses launch an affiliate program?


In an eCommerce affiliate program, a publisher will share your products with their audience so that they will buy your products, collect a lead form, or click to your website. Then you will pay them a commission. The publishers are usually bloggers, influencers, or other small businesses.

Here are the reasons why you should launch an affiliate program.

  • Increase sales: Potential affiliates send a large number of leads to your website, so you can sell more products and increase your sales.
  • Minimize cost: You may spend a large amount on advertising without knowing whether it can bring you orders as expected. But an affiliate program is different. You only have to pay for the sales generated.
  • Increase brand awareness: Affiliates showing or talking about your brand with their audience. Hence, more people know your brand. 


How to start an eCommerce affiliate program

1. Plan your affiliate program

The first thing you need to do is look at your business to determine if an affiliate program is right for you. If it works, think of how you will carry out the program.

Next, find out what your competitors are doing, which publishers they are working with, or how they are tracking and offering their affiliates. Then you will know what you should do with your affiliate program.

Your plan should have specific objectives and KPIs as well as a clear commission strategy. By knowing your customer retention rate (CRR), customer lifetime value (CLV), cost of goods sold (COGS), and so on, you’ll know how much to pay for affiliates.

2. Choose affiliates

It’s time to recruit the right affiliates to work with you. You can decide based on criteria such as their vertical, website traffic, consistency with the brand, the search landscape, and domain authority (DA). Also, looking for reviews and comparison sites is a good idea.

Make sure to diversify the number of affiliates you work with if you can. Because relying on a few partners may be risky when they leave your program. 

3. Conduct regular reviews

Carry out reviews regularly to evaluate your affiliate program and have an adjustment if it’s necessary. 


Success tips for an eCommerce affiliate program

Choose a right affiliate management technology

There are many available affiliate management platforms that help you run the program effectively, so select the one that works well with your store. You can choose a platform based on its quality of service and online reputation. Or you can combine different tools when they give you the best results.

Connect with affiliates regularly

The affiliates should know about products you’re promoting on social media, banner ads, or upcoming product launches. Interact with your affiliates regularly to make sure they keep track of the work status. And they will achieve target KPIs within the planned period.

Trello app may help you do the work productively. You can create a board to work with your affiliates, set weekly meetings, and show how many orders they have contributed.

Use automation tools

Automation helps increase your productivity and value by allowing you to automate workflow and concentrate on more impactful tasks. Atom8 is one of the powerful automation tools for online merchants to manage an affiliate program effectively. 

You can track discount codes or coupons relating to affiliates to determine how many orders or sales have been achieved.

Why is tracking discount codes important?

  • Firstly, you can base them to determine how much to pay for your affiliates.
  • Secondly, you can group different levels of affiliates to have a strategy to develop your affiliate program. Affiliates driving you a large number of sales are the ones you should concentrate on. Now, make a plan to build a long-term relationship with them.

Moreover, Atom8 also helps you send notification emails whenever someone places an order with a code or coupon from your affiliates to your team to keep a seamless track of how your affiliate program is working.

Finally, if you’re using the Trello app, Atom8 will automatically add orders generated from affiliates to your board. Thus, you and your partners can know immediately.

register for demo


Now that you know how to launch an eCommerce affiliate program to increase your sales. Hopefully, our tips will help you make the program more successful. To discover other useful guides for your eCommerce business, check out our website.


Table of Contents

Book a Demo

Request a demo for GritGlobal’s BigCommerce solutions.

My Webpage

I understand that I can withdraw my marketing consent at any time by submitting an opt-out request via email: By submitting this form, I acknowledge that I have read and understand the GritGlobal's Privacy Policy.