Author Archives: Jim Webster, Admin

About Jim Webster, Admin

General manager for iDevDirect, makers of iDevAffiliate.

Launching a Successful In-house Affiliate Program

You’ve likely already decided that an in-house affiliate program is best for your brand, and that this option yields some impressive benefits that large affiliate networks just can’t offer. Through an in-house affiliate program, you won’t need to give up a large chunk of the pie you’re offering to affiliates like you would with a big affiliate network. An in-house affiliate platform gives you more control and a more direct relationship with affiliates, not only ensuring the content they present is on-brand, but also allowing your company to custom-tailor your affiliate program and grow revenue.

Choosing a Tracking Platform

Building your own affiliate platform from scratch is work-intensive and expensive, which is why for most companies it makes the most sense to go with an existing platform. Fortunately, there are many options available, often with a one-time setup fee, or even a monthly/yearly recurring subscription charge. But this abundance of options is a double-edged sword: with so many choices, just how do you narrow it down? Here are some features we think are essential for any successful in-house affiliate platform:

  • Fool-Proof Tracking
    Nothing makes affiliates drop out of your program faster than if they feel like commissions are slipping through their fingers. Your affiliate platform needs not only to accurately track sales, but to also prevent scammers from finding a way to cheat the system.
  • Customizable Commissions
    Do you want to offer your affiliates a percentage of sales, or a flat fee per lead? Perhaps you’d like to offer a coupon code for your affiliates to promote instead. Whatever your inclination, your affiliate platform should have the ability for you to choose!
  • Detailed Reporting
    An affiliate program falls flat on its face without any sort of detailed analytics. Not only should your company see how your affiliate program is performing, but also your affiliates should be able to see detailed reporting. In this way, both your company and your affiliates will be empowered to utilize your affiliate platform effectively.
  • Integrations, Integrations, Integrations
    We’re going to come right out and say it: integrations are integral to any affiliate platform. You obviously need to ensure an affiliate program integrates with whatever shopping carts, WordPress plugins, or CMS you may be using, but it’s also important to keep in mind that your company’s website will likely grow and expand later. The last thing you want is for your online presence to outgrow your affiliate platform!

Finding Affiliates

Many companies falsely assume that just because they’re not running their affiliate program through a large affiliate network means they can’t have as successful of an affiliate program. This is wholly and patently false! In fact, the unique benefits that an in-house affiliate platform has may very well enable you to have higher-performing affiliates since they will have a much closer relationship with your brand. You’d be surprised at how many companies forget this basic step!

Don’t Forget a Link!

A commonly-overlooked strategy many affiliate programs seemingly forget to engage in in placing a clearly-visible link on their website. While this may seem like a simple solution, it’s incredibly effective. If a company or individual is really interested in partnering up with your brand, they’re likely already looking for a link for an affiliate program. This is a great way to effortlessly capitalize on organic interest without having to reach out.

Don’t let those marketing tools that your affiliate platform should include slip your mind. Remember: it’s one of the essential features mentioned above! These tools are usually an efficient way to get the word out about your affiliate program across different social media sites, advertising platforms, and even entice visitors who visit your company’s website who may not otherwise click on that affiliate signup link.

Recruiting Affiliates

You likely already have people already interested in partnering with your budding affiliate program. All they need is a little nudge! Think about your customers, existing resellers or referrers, and even vendors you already work with. They already know about your brand and this will give them a leg up in your affiliate program, leading to more organic leads and conversions. They’ll probably also be happy to earn their commission relatively effortlessly! It’s a win-win situation.

Also, be sure to check out the affiliates your competitors have. Not only can you pitch your program to those same affiliates, but this will also give you some market research that will help you to hone in on a particular audience that responds positively to marketing geared towards your brand’s industry. With or without competitor research, you can look into reaching out to influencers or industry experts who you can partner with when rolling out your affiliate program.

Get the Ball Rolling with Your Affiliates

Once you have affiliates, you shouldn’t just leave them to their own devices. A truly effective and successful affiliate program will work with new affiliates and help them to hit the ground running, setting them up to generate leads and conversions from day one. But how do the most successful affiliate programs empower their affiliates?

  • Provide Content
    Not only should you be providing your affiliates with eye-catching graphics to grab potential customers’ attention, but also informative graphics to let them know what your brand is all about. It may also be helpful to supply brand guidelines to make sure your affiliates are representing your brand authentically and accurately.
  • Educate Your Affiliates
    Highly productive affiliates aren’t born, they’re made. You have to empower your affiliates by educating them with informational resources about how to be effective affiliate marketers.
  • Reach Out
    Let your affiliates know you’re there for whatever they may need, whether it be advice for how to best represent your brand, or marketing tips to make your partnership more successful. By keeping an open line with your affiliates, you may even open your brand up to more collaborative marketing opportunities.

Get Started Off on the Right Foot

Looking to get started off on the right foot with your new in-house affiliate program? We heard through the grapevine that you may be looking for an affiliate platform! iDevAffiliate is the leading affiliate tracking software, jam-packed with incredible cost-saving features that will help set your brand up for success.

Keeping Affiliates Active in Your Affiliate Program

One of the biggest pitfalls of a lackluster affiliate program is leaving affiliates feeling completely unengaged and disconnected from your brand. If your affiliates don’t have much of a stake in your company, aside from the commission they earn, if they don’t feel involved or included, they won’t actively engage in promotions. It’s not as simple as just providing your affiliates with campaigns, content, and links to promote and leaving it up to them. After all, what value does an affiliate bring that an automated display advertising campaign doesn’t? Affiliates choose to participate in affiliate programs for a reason. You need to build on this initial motivation and not let it go to waste.

keeping affiliates active and marketing

This is why it’s important to build a relationship with your affiliates. By fostering a connectedness with your company, it will ultimately give your affiliate program an edge over other programs your affiliates may be participating in. Connected affiliates made to feel like part of the team are more likely to be active in your program, yielding higher earnings for you, and more commissions for affiliates!

Affiliate Newsletter

Never underestimate the power of keeping your affiliates in the loop of the goings-on in your business or even just your affiliate program. By giving affiliates periodic, quality updates via an affiliate newsletter, it will help them feel more connected to your brand and help build that relationship you will ultimately be leveraging through the affiliate marketing process. Keeping affiliates in-the-know keeps them engaged, keeps them interested, and keeps you and your business on their radar.

affiliate newsletter

By keeping your affiliates well-informed and abreast of any pertinent updates by means of a newsletter, it also empowers them to represent your brand more accurately and authentically. It may expose your affiliates to aspects of your business or brand that they may not have known about, and that tidbit of pertinent information could be the key to effectively motivating your affiliate’s audience to engage in those sought-after conversions. Knowledge is power, after all, and consistent, informative communications gives your affiliates what they need to succeed.

Fresh, Frequent Promotions

Affiliates think there’s something about your brand or business that is relevant to their audience, and they believe that special something will ultimately result in the conversions they need to earn commissions. That being said, even the most interesting, most relevant campaign will lose its luster to your affiliate’s audience as time goes on. You simply must cycle out promotions and shake things up every once and a while. Brands’ marketing campaigns evolve and change over time to stay relevant and keep consumers interested, and affiliate marketing isn’t any different.

coupon code commissioning for your affiliate program

Just as breaking news stories fade and fizzle out of public consciousness in a matter of days or weeks, so too do your affiliates’ audiences lose interest. If your affiliates are posting fresh content to keep their audiences coming back for more, why aren’t you? One of your top priorities should be creating and implementing new promotions, as well as informing your affiliates of those promotions that they can then share with their audiences.

Keep in Touch

keep in touch with your affiliates

What better way to build a relationship with your affiliates than to let them meet and interact with a member of your team? Conference calls, phone calls, Zoom meetings, or even regular virtual office hours are all ways to make affiliates feel included and valued. It empowers affiliates to ask questions and get personalized (in some cases: live) feedback, and it can even include other affiliates, which is an excellent way in which affiliates can put their minds together and work collaboratively to discover effective marketing strategies. It’s a win-win-win situation!

Provide Affiliates with Resources

Sure, affiliates have access to graphics, affiliate links, and even your company’s website, but are they provided with other resources that truly empower them to be the best affiliates they can? Show your affiliates you care if they succeed. Not only should your affiliates have a vested interest in the success of your brand and its affiliate program, you should have a vested interest in the success of your affiliates that goes beyond conversion rates. Sure, it’s obvious that you care if your affiliates succeed, because their success is ultimately your success, but you need to really show your affiliates this. Again, empower your affiliates to be successful and be supportive of them.

social media marketing for affiliates

Some helpful resources for affiliates could include informative articles about affiliate marketing, various tools to optimize their performance, and even success stories from other affiliates that delve into their winning strategies. Putting forth the effort to connect your affiliates with helpful information will go a long way towards building a relationship, as well as driving affiliate enthusiasm and motivation.

Incentivize

There’s nothing like a healthy dose of competition to drive motivation! Motivated affiliates go that extra mile, especially if they know there’s a little something extra in it for them. Some successful affiliate programs have implemented an affiliate leaderboard or offered a bonus to top affiliates. What’s particularly fascinating about this strategy is that it will motivate affiliates to peek in on their competition, analyzing their competitors’ strategies to find out what will work best for their audience to drive up conversions. Friendly competition is a fantastic way to cut to the chase and distill effective strategies down to their most vital parts.

award affiliates for performance

Spicing up your affiliate program with incentives doesn’t necessarily have to create direct competition between affiliates, and many affiliate programs have employed a variety of innovative incentives to get their affiliates more involved. Whether it be a bonus for reaching a certain milestone, a limited-time increase in commission for a particular product, or even tiered commission percentages, these incentives motivate your affiliates to be more active and engaged!

Empower your Affiliates

Although iDevAffiliate is the developer of leading affiliate tracking software, we employ all of these strategies in our own affiliate program! At the end of the day, building a relationship with your affiliates and keeping them in the loop empowers them to actively engage in your affiliate program. With proper support, fresh promotions, a healthy dose of motivation, and the knowledge they need to succeed, your affiliates will go the extra mile in driving up conversions for mutual benefit.

empower your affiliates

For more information on how your business can benefit from the most feature-rich, easy-to-use affiliate tracking software, contact iDevAffiliate, the leader in affiliate tracking solutions for more than 20 years.

Manual Commission Creation – Missing 2019 Year

This update will fix the issue where the date (year) stops at 2018 when manually creating a new commission in your iDevAffiliate admin center.

Version Note

This patch is for iDevAffiliate 9.2 users only. If you’re using an older version of iDevAffiliate, you will need to update to the current release. By doing so, this patch is already included in the 9.2 distribution you will be upgrading to. Instructions for upgrading to the current release are below as well.

Existing 9.2 Users
  1. Download The Patch Update
  2. Save the file downloaded above to your local hard drive then unzip it. Inside the ZIP package, you will find a file called create_commission.php.
  3. Using auto-detect mode in FTP, upload this new file to your /admin folder. Allow this new file to overwrite your existing file.

That’s it. You can now return to your admin center and manually create a commission like normal.

Upgrade Instructions For Customer Using Older Versions

Login to your Client Area here:
http://www.idevstore.com/customers/index.php?task=login

Once logged in, click on Details & Download next to your order then click on the Download iDevAffiliate. You’ll want to download the latest possible version. Once downloaded to your computer, unzip the package and inside you’ll find a readme.pdf file that has the step-by-step installation instructions.

NOTE: If you aren’t eligible to download the latest release it means your upgrades extension has expired (you received 1 year free with your purchase). You can click “Renewal Required” to purchase the upgrade extension for $89.99 which will get you to the latest release.

iDevAffiliate 9.2 Release

Our latest release, iDevAffiliate 9.2 is now available. This is a security heavy update with support now for the current releases of PHP, 7.1 and 7.2. We’ve also added a RESTful API for developers.

Major Features Added/Updated
  • Security: CSRF/XSS updated
  • Force SSL option added
  • PHP 7.1 and 7.2 support added – Now 5.6 – 7.2 are supported
  • RESTful API added
  • Affiliate lockout feature added for failed login attempts
  • IPv6 support added
  • New Mailing List Integrations: Infusionsoft, ConvertKit and SendGrid
  • New Tax Report added
  • GDPR Related: Create a Privacy Policy
  • GDPR Related: Hide IP from traffic logs in affiliate dashboard
  • New Plugin: Sliding Scale Commissions
  • Library Update: Smarty Templates
  • Library Update: PHP Mailer
  • Date/Time feature updated for more options

In addition to the major updates/additions above, various bug fixes have been implemented as well.

Developers can now make use of the new RESTful API we’ve implemented. This is in addition to the basic API we’ve always offered.

Define multiple commission scale rates based on the purchase amount. For example, you can pay 10% for all orders ranging $1.00 – $10.00 and 12% for all orders ranging $10.00 – $20.00. The scale levels you can create are limitless and work with both pay-per-sale percentage and flat rate commissioning structures.

How Do I Get This Update?

Cloud Customers
You have already been updated to the current release! You can login now and start using the new features.

Existing Self-Hosted Customers
Login to your customer account on our website.
Login Now

Once logged in, click on My Packages then View Details (next to your iDevAffiliate order) and click the Downloads button and download iDevAffiliate 9.2.

New Customers
Just purchase iDevAffiliate and you will automatically get iDevAffiliate 9.2 whether you choose the self-hosted or cloud option.

iDevAffiliate 9.2 Release Now Available

Feature Rich Affiliate Tracking Option for Teachable!

Are you selling courses using Teachable? Are you wanting to start your own affiliate program? If you answered YES!, we’d like to welcome you to iDevAffiliate. We make operating your own affiliate program super easy and include all the features you’d expect to find in today’s leading affiliate tracking product.

Teachable Affiliate Program Option

With more than 16 years producing one of the leading affiliate tracking products on the market, iDevAffiliate is a fantastic solution for those looking to add an affiliate marketing component to your Teachable course offerings. Using iDevAffiliate with Teachable takes just a few minutes to get set up and has an unmatched array of features.

Built-In Advanced Commissioning Options
  • Commission affiliates for both one-time and recurring course payment options.
  • Support for our incredibly popular coupon code commissioning feature is also built-in and ready to go!
  • Support for per-product commissioning is built-in. Define product specific commission rates!

Pricing Starts At $39/month!

Integration Instructions

We make use of the very powerful webhook feature made available by Teachable. Its as simple as copy/pasting a provided URL to a specific location in your Teachable account.

For step-by-step instructions, login to your iDevAffiliate admin center and go the cart integration wizard. In the dropdown menu, pick Teachable and the integration instructions are provided for you. If you’re a current iDevAffiliate customer and don’t see Teachable in your dropdown menu, please contact our support dept. and we’ll get you taken care of. We will likely just need to get you an upgrade to the current release.

Commission Record

Once affiliates start referring customers, they will start earning commissions. All you have to do is approve these new commissions and pay your affiliates for the new sales they are delivering!

Teachable Affiliate Plugin!

Operate Your Own Affiliate Program With Your Sellfy Store!

affiliate program for sellfy

Are you a Sellfy store owner wanting start your own affiliate program? Welcome to iDevAffiliate. We make operating your own affiliate program easy and include all the features you’d expect to find in today’s leading affiliate tracking product.

Sellfy Affiliate Plugin

With more than 16 years producing one of the leading affiliate tracking products on the market, iDevAffiliate is a fantastic solution for those looking to add an affiliate marketing component to your Sellfy store. Using iDevAffiliate with Sellfy takes just a few minutes to get set up and has an unmatched array of features.

Pricing Starts At $39/month!

Integration Instructions

We make use of the very powerful webhook feature made available by Sellfy. Its as simple as copy/pasting a provided URL to a specific location in your Sellfy account.

start your own affiliate program for your sellfy store

For step-by-step instructions, login to your iDevAffiliate admin center and go the cart integration wizard. In the dropdown menu, pick Sellfy and the integration instructions are provided for you. If you don’t see Sellfy in your dropdown menu, please contact our support dept. and we’ll get you taken care of. We will likely just need to get you an upgrade to the current release.

affiliate commissions with sellfy

Commission Record

Once affiliates start referring customers, they will start earning commissions. All you have to do is approve these new commissions and pay your affiliates for the new sales they are delivering!

sellfy affiliate plugin

Sellfy Affiliate Plugin

Google/Mozilla Update

Important Note About This Update
This update only affects customers using the downloadable version who have installed iDevAffiliate prior to October 11, 2017. Cloud customer accounts have already been patched and should not be affected.

Patch Background
This update concerns the design of our custom incoming traffic page links. This feature offers two options. The second option “Manual Link Creation“, is the one in question here. When using this option, affiliates can define their own incoming traffic page directly in affiliate links. Like this: &url=http://www.yoursite.com/page.html

This can be potentially harmful and exploited. As a result, we have completely removed this option from the current release. You will want to update your installation using the instructions below. Once the patch is applied, the above option will no longer be available. However, affiliates can still drive traffic to alternate pages using option #1 which is “Automated Link Creation” where they enter the URL in to their affiliate account and we provide them with a special link to use.

The Error Shown By Google
Until this patch is implemented, you could possibly be given warnings from google showing this potential exploit.

Your affiliate program may also wind up on the “google harmful programs” list. Don’t worry, we’ll show you to go get removed below!

So, if you’re seeing either of these issues, this patch update will fix it. If you aren’t seeing it and haven’t implemented the patch yet, please do so now to ensure this doesn’t happen.

How To Fix It!
You will need to upload a couple patch files then request removal from Google.

iDevAffiliate 9 Users
Step 1: Download the patch update. Unzip the package to your local computer. Then, using FTP, upload the folders/files in their current structure to your existing iDevAffiliate folder. Allow these new files to overwrite your existing files.

Download 9.1 Patch Files Download 9.0 Patch Files

If you’re using any version earlier than 9.2, the best option is to upgrade to the current version as it has this bug fix built-in to it already. See: How To Upgrade

Step 2: Request removal of your affiliate program from Google.

Request Removal From Google

Most customers see removal within a few hours.

iDevAffiliate 8 and Below Users
Anything iDevAffiliate 8 or older are many years old now and no longer supported. The proper method to fix this Google issue, along with many other security related updates/patches will be to update your system from v8 to v9.

Upgrading From An Earlier Release
Here are instructions for downloading the current version of your product.

Login to your Client Area here:
http://www.idevstore.com/customers/index.php?task=login

Once logged in, click on “Details & Download” next to your order then click on the “Download iDevAffiliate“. You’ll want to download the latest possible version. Once downloaded to your computer, unzip the package and inside you’ll find a readme.pdf file that has the step-by-step installation instructions.

NOTE: If you aren’t eligible to download the latest release it means your upgrades extension has expired (you received 1 year free with your purchase). You can click “Renewal Required” to purchase the upgrade extension for $89.99 which will get you to the latest release.

Cognito Forms Affiliate Plugin Option

Are you a Cognito Forms user wanting implement an affiliate program for the forms you’ve created using Cognito? Well, we’ve got the Cognito Forms Affiliate Plugin you’re looking for! Welcome to iDevAffiliate. We make operating your own affiliate program easy and include all the features you’d expect to find in today’s leading affiliate tracking product.

Cognito Forms Affiliate Plugin

With more than 16 years producing one of the leading affiliate tracking products on the market, iDevAffiliate is a fantastic solution for those looking to add affiliate tracking to Cognito Forms. Using iDevAffiliate with Cognito Forms takes just a few minutes to get set up and has an unmatched array of features.

Integration Instructions

We make use of the very powerful webhook feature made available by Cognito Forms. Its as simple as copy/pasting a provided URL to a specific location in your Cognito Forms admin center. For step-by-step instructions, login to your iDevAffiliate admin center and go the cart integration wizard. In the dropdown menu, pick Cognito Forms and the integration instructions are provided for you. If you don’t see Cognito Forms in your dropdown menu, please contact our support dept. and we’ll get you taken care of. We will likely just need to get you an upgrade to the current release.

Our integration with Cognito Forms is designed for use with forms you have monetized. If you are accepting payment on your form and want to offer a commission to referring affiliates, our product is what you’re looking for! We also have advanced fraud protection to prevent fraudulent commissions, built right in to the integration!

Commission Record

Once affiliates start referring customers, they will start earning commissions. All you have to do is approve these new commissions and pay your affiliates for the new sales they are delivering!

Cognito Forms Affiliate Plugin

Cognito Forms Affiliate Plugin

iDevAffiliate 9.1 Release Now Available

We are happy to announce our latest release, iDevAffiliate 9.1. Sprinkled in with some new features as well as existing feature updates, comes PHP 7.0 compatibility. Oh, and it has a pretty map now too! 🙂

iDevAffiliate 9.1 Release Now Available!

iDevAffiliate 9.1 Release Now Available

Webhooks for Developers

Get Webhook notifications for various activities throughout your affiliate program.
Webhooks Documentation

Affiliate Dashboard Themes

We’ve added two more themes for a total of three options. Plus you can now replicate an existing theme to create your own. We’ve added more theme options as well as more control over the front-end theme content.

iDevAffiliate 9.1 Release Now Available

iDevAffiliate 9.1 Release Now Available

Geo Targeting

Based on geographical location (Country), you can now route traffic to alternate pages and you can have the landing page appending with the incoming Country code.

iDevAffiliate 9.1 Release Now Available

New Mailing List Integrations

We have added Vertical Response, Active Campaign and Campaign Monitor as mailing integration options.

Various Features Added/Updated
  • Individual incoming traffic page override
  • Easier to use search function
  • Improved plugin management UI
  • Updated IP table for geo locations
  • Numerous bug/patch updates
New Product Requirements

As technologies advance and grow, so does the iDevAffiliate requirements. 🙂

  • PHP 5.6 or higher (including PHP 7.0)
  • MySQL 5 or higher w/ PDO enabled
  • ionCube enabled
  • Mycrypt enabled
  • cURL enabled

Most hosting providers meet these requirements by default.

How do I get this update?

Existing Customers
If you are using the downloadable version, login to your customer account on our website.
Login Now

Once logged in, click on My Packages then View Details (next to your iDevAffiliate order)and click the Downloads button and download iDevAffiliate 9.1.

If you are using the cloud edition, you will be upgraded over time but if you’d like to be moved to the front of the list, just open a ticket and request the upgrade now.
Contact Us

New Customers
Just purchase iDevAffiliate and you will automatically get iDevAffiliate 9.1!

iDevAffiliate 9.1 Release Now Available

Eventbrite Affiliate Tracking Option!

Are you a Eventbrite user wanting to operate your own affiliate program? Well, you’ve come to the right place! Welcome to iDevAffiliate. We make operating your own affiliate program easy and include all the features you’d expect to find in today’s leading affiliate tracking product.

Add Affiliate Marketing And Let Your Affiliates Sell Tickets To Your Events!

iDevAffiliate

With more than 16 years producing one of the leading affiliate tracking products on the market, iDevAffiliate is a fantastic solution for those wanting to operate their own affiliate program. Why not have your own team affiliate marketers promoting your events! Using iDevAffiliate with Eventbrite takes just a few minutes to get set up and has an unmatched array of features.

Integration Instructions

Login to your iDevAffiliate admin center and go the cart integration wizard. In the dropdown menu, pick Eventbrite and the integration instructions are provided for you. If you don’t see Eventbrite in your dropdown menu, please contact our support dept. and we’ll get you taken care of.

Commission Record

Once affiliates start referring customers, they will start earning commissions. All you have to do is approve these new commissions and pay your affiliates for the new sales they are delivering!