What’s the biggest challenge you are facing with your business or startup? Even though you have a great product but reaching out to the right audience is a challenge. Isn’t it?
Of course, you can rely on PPC & paid traffic to get new leads or customer, but again it’s not enough for your product marketing. How about a lot of influencers around the globe talk about your product & market it for you in return of a small commission from every sale they generate. None the less, everything is automated & once you have set things right, you will be enjoying & ripping the true meaning of internet lifestyle.
For your startup or product based business, an affiliate program can do wonders for your business. With a successful affiliate program, you can have an army of people who will be doing the hard work of marketing your product for free.
不管你是刚创业还是你已经开始运作公司了，一个affiliate program会为你的业务带来奇迹，一旦你借助了affiliate program创建一个成功的策略，全世界人们将免费为推广你的产品，埋头苦干，你一下子公司人数比IBM还多。
Many businesses are relying on affiliate marketing as their primary marketing channel. To integrate an affiliate program with your business, there are many solutions.
现在都很多公司把affiliate marketing作为首先的marketing channel，市场上有很多方案可以把你的业务和affiliate program结合起来。
- Hosted solutions like ShareASale, Clickbank, Hasoffers, CJ.
- You can also self-host affiliate program using PostAffiliatepro.
- And if your business is on WordPress, you can use AffiliateWP plugin.
Each of the above-mentioned solutions has its own pros-cons & depending upon your business goal; you should pick the right one. For certain business, it is ok to have an affiliate program on multiple platforms.
选择合适的， 部分需要打组合拳的业务，可以在多个平台上拥有联盟计划（广告也有类似的做法：你在facebook测款，做调查问卷；然后用测试结果去google ads投放询盘）。
For example, Affiliate network like ShareASale, CJ offers a marketplace that does the hard part of recruiting the affiliates for you. I will be discussing more specific network in coming days but today you will be learning about starting an affiliate program using ShareASale. I have already talked about ShareASale affiliate program in details here & today’s guide is for merchants, entrepreneurs, E-commerce sites to integrate an affiliate program with their online business.
Recently, I was setting up an Affiliate program for my client & with his acknowledgment I have written this guide so that anyone can start an affiliate program for their business.
How to start an affiliate program using ShareASale:
In this particular case, the client had an e-commerce site that was built on WordPress using Woo-commerce platform. Even if you have a different platform, the process is more or less the same with a slight difference of placing the tracking code. Your developer can easily do it for you. You just need to give him this article reference. Without any delay, let’s get on with this epic tutorial where you will be learning about setting up an affiliate program.
如果是实体店，affiliate program需要安排一个人进驻在你的店铺盯着，一旦从affiliate program的人进到店里，他就全程跟踪
对网站，affiliate program就得在你的网站嵌入一段跟踪代码，这个跟踪代码负责跟affiliate program汇报用户是否购买，是否订阅，同时把数据发送到affiliate program后台。
I have outlined all the steps & explained only those complex steps where you might get stuck. Even if you have never setup an affiliate program before, this guide will give you a complete idea of how other businesses are setting up an affiliate program.
本文我略去了注册affiliate program的步骤（你可以去注册体验ShareASale.com身份选择merchant，不要选择推手），只摘出最复杂的部分，即便你之前没有接触过affiliate program，看完这部分内容你心中就会有一套完整的开展计划。
- Go to ShareaSale site & Create a Merchant account. This should take about few minutes & then login to your Merchant Dashboard.
到ShareaSale 创建好merchant account 之后，进入Merchant Dashboard
Placing the tracking code:
This is the first step you need to do so that ShareASale can track which one of your affiliate is applicable for the commission. You need to place invisible tracking code on “Thank you page” (Order confirmation page).
第一步，需要部署跟踪代码，这样ShareASale 才可以跟踪交易是否成功，找你算佣金；部署方法：把跟踪代码tracking code 安装到订单支付完成的页面“Thank you page” (Order confirmation page).
You can select your shopping cart from their big list & it would guide you on how to add tracking code. If your shopping cart is not listed, you need to click on “I’m using a custom-built shopping cart” & scroll down to the bottom to get your ShareASale Merchant ID. In my case, WooCommerce is not listed, so I selected the same option.
当然了，如果你的网站是自己开发的，你需要点击 “I’m using a custom-built shopping cart”，滚动条下拉，找到ShareASale Merchant ID，然后根据shareasale提供的步骤，请开发人员添加代码
WooCommerce 也没有在这里，所以我也选择 “I’m using a custom-built shopping cart”，但是我不用自己添加代码，wordpress有一个插件可以完成这个功能。
In the above image, you can see the Merchant, ID= 61540. This is what we are interested in. Luckily if you are using WooCommerce, there is a free WordPress plugin call WooCommece ShareASale Merchant tracking, which simplifies the process. You can download this free plugin from here. Once you have installed & activated the plugin, Go to WC ShareASale Merchant setting & paste your Merchant ID there (See below screenshot).
上图，你看到了 Merchant, ID= 61540，这是我要的，我现在需要安装一个插件“WooCommece ShareASale Merchant tracking”，安装好之后，进入WC ShareASale Merchant setting，把Merchant ID 粘贴到下图的方框
This plugin will automatically add the tracking pixels at the checkout page, so no other configuration is required on your WordPress blog. Now, Go back to ShareASale configuration page & click on next.
这个插件会把跟踪代码加入到支付页面,checkout page,你需要再做其他配置，返回ShareASale configuration 点击 next 下一步。
Test your pixels with test transaction:
On the next page click on Test tracking code. You need to make a minimum order of $1.
When you click on begin the test, it will open your website with ShareASale affiliate link. Now, when you complete a purchase, it would track the sale & show you if the test was successful or not. ShareASale will send you an email about an affiliate transaction that could take about 5 minutes and then click on verify test.
点击 begin the test，将自动打开你的网站，不过网址后缀加了ShareASale affiliate参数（不要自己输入xxxx.com这样的网址打开，跟踪不到），当你在网站下单支付成功之后，这个网址会跟踪你的下单过程，是否成功，5分钟左右，ShareAsale会给你发一个这笔交易的详情，收到邮件后，你就点击verify test.
Here is how a successful test looks like:
Activate your ShareASale account:
Click on next from here & the next step is to pay setup fee & add minimum deposit account. The setup fee is standard $550 & you need to deposit a minimum amount of $100. This amount is used to pay the Affiliates and ShareASale for sales and other qualified leads that you define. You can also setup Auto-deposit option that is suggested to ensure you can pay affiliates when the fund is low in your account. Do remember, you will be collecting payment for all sale made via affiliates using your usual payment gateway channel.
Click on Click here to make your payment. you can make a payment by any of the international cards. Currently, they support Visa, MasterCard, Amex & Discover cards.
点击“Click here to make your payment”，现在支持各种国际支付的银行卡，比如Visa, MasterCard, Amex & Discover cards.
After the payment, it would take about one day for ShareASale to approve your account. Meanwhile, you can continue uploading rest of the stuff such as banner graphics, text links or coupons & deals.
Once your account is fully approved, now it’s time to add product images & create links for individual products. It’s recommended to have graphic banners for your product that will ensure that affiliates can quickly start promoting your business with given graphics. ShareASale merchant dashboard offers all the tools that you need to run a successful affiliate program.
一旦账户审核通过，现在你可以上传产品图片和产品链接，建议你使用banners 图片，一遍affiliates 可以很快开始推广
By the end
I would suggest you to work closely with your marketing team initially to set up the program properly. This includes drip feed of email for new affiliates, setting up program rules, working on promotion strategy for the affiliate program. One smart thing that you can do is, join few popular affiliate programs & see how they are running it for their business. Pick those strategies that are useful & integrate it into your affiliate model.
加入一些流行的affiliate programs，看看这些affiliate programs如何运作它的业务。 选择有效的策略并将其集成到您的业务模型中。
I’m not getting in depth of dashboard configuration as it will differ from one business to another. Few of the steps like adding product banners, setting up coupons are generic for all the affiliate programs. Well, I hope this helps you to start an affiliate program for your business. Also, check out this video that will help you to understand how bloggers & publishers will interact as an affiliate with your Affiliate program on ShareASale:
我没有深入仪表板配置，因为它会因业务而异。但是，添加产品横幅、设置优惠券等几个步骤对于所有affiliate programs都是通用的。 我希望这有助于您为您的企业启动分销计划。 此外，请观看此视频，以帮助您了解博主和发布商如何与ShareASale上的联盟计划进行互动：
Certain businesses are not allowed to be a part of ShareAsale such as pharmaceuticals & few others. So do check with them before starting the whole process. Best of luck & let me know how it goes for you.
Do share this guide with any of your friend who have an online business & can take advantage of this affiliate program for marketing.