Thursday, 15 November 2012

Five tips for driving online traffic through affiliate marketing

Used effectively, affiliate marketing can contribute up to 30% of the online revenue for a brand. Also known as performance marketing, the affiliate channel harnesses the power of a network of publishers promoting on the brand’s behalf, both extending and optimising a brand’s reach.
Unfortunately, affiliate marketing has sometimes been perceived as the poor relation behind some of its sexier industry siblings – social media, creative and advertising. With the rapid march of eCommerce however and the resultant need for a dynamic online approach,  the performance marketing channel is growing and is increasingly becoming a key part of brands’ multi-channel online marketing strategies.
It’s important of course to get the basics right. There are rules of engagement for affiliates, optimal means of incentivising the sale and the need for policies to protect brands when in the hands of third party marketers. The good news is, with the right structure in place, affiliate marketing is a highly rewarding approach for the brand and its online performance. Here are our top five tips for embarking on an effective performance marketing program:

1. Communicate, communicate, communicate

Communication is key if an affiliate program is to perform effectively at securing those all-important incremental sales. Merchant, affiliate and network need to form a magic triangle of communication where information and expertise can be exchanged and shared, and ideas generated. To assume that affiliates will know your brand and products inside out should not be left to chance, and detail is paramount. Advising on which products are best sellers will help affiliates to promote your range more effectively, and drive higher conversion. Keep affiliates posted on what’s hot and keep them motivated to actively promote on your behalf.
You should also identify important affiliates. For strategic partners that offer advantages of volume, conversion or reach, offer exclusives or a different commission structure in order to incentivise them further. High quality affiliates should be valued and working in collaboration can generate robust results – if you can show there’s more in it for them, there will also be more in it for your brand!

2. Transparency

Affiliate marketing is all about performance and offers the advantage of tracking from click to sale so that the affiliate can be recognised as the source of the sale and reimbursed accordingly. Performance marketing is inherently measurable, so you must keep a close eye on where conversions have taken place, but also be transparent around cancellations and ensure de-duping is scrupulously applied.
Clarity and consistency around your payment processes will also keep affiliates happy and in turn, more likely to promote your program again and again. Delayed payments are a major turn-off for affiliates and can damage positive relationships.
The administration of approving transactions on time is critical. Affiliates work hard to promote the brand, and you should ensure they are credited on time.

3. Tools of the trade

With great products and active lines of communication in place, it is important that the quality and availability of affiliate resources doesn’t let your brand down. Ensure banners are up-to-date and customised to reflect seasonal changes, offering accurate product info and pricing for instance. Christmas is approaching, and most big affiliates have already commenced their Christmas promotions – they can’t do this without the necessary resources in place.
The quality of the product feed you provide to affiliates is also very important in enabling performance. The feed should include all the products on site and their attributes. It should be well structured, correctly formatted, consistently labelled and updated frequently. Using all the fields an eCommerce platform utilises (categories, colours, sizes, price and images), you should ensure there are no spelling mistakes, broken links, or truncated fields. Remember, feed requirements will vary according to your vertical and your network will be able to provide detailed advice on how to optimise your feed accordingly. Make life for the affiliate as easy and simple as possible, and they will be more likely to promote your program.

4. Keep it fresh

Don’t underestimate the power of creative engagement and innovation through the affiliate channel. Jumping on current market trends, hosting affiliate events and brand immersions, developing tailored campaigns, offers, discounts and competitions with high performing affiliates will all help make your program perform even more effectively.  The other straightforward thing to ensure is that affiliates are kept up to date on any changes to the brand website.

5. Onwards and upwards

Reviewing activity regularly will enable you to understand what is working well. By incorporating this insight into future campaigns, brands will be able to prioritise their key affiliates and create offers that optimise conversion in a smooth and efficient process.
Brand-side digital marketers need to continuously tinker with their affiliate program to ensure it continues to improve in performance and drive incremental sales. By communicating effectively, exercising transparency, utilising content imaginatively, adding creativity and constantly reviewing activity, an affiliate program will grow revenue consistently and cumulatively for the brand. - Daily Income 1.5% for 100 days, 10 Impression Points per adport, Direct Referral 5% (Unlimited Depth),   Binary Commission 10% (Unlimited Depth), Minimum Investment and payout 20$

Wednesday, 7 November 2012

Barack Obama wins election for second term as president

President Barack Obama handily defeated Gov. Mitt Romney and won himself a second term on Tuesday after a bitter and historically expensive race that was primarily fought in just a handful of battleground states. Obama beat Romney after nabbing almost every one of the 12 crucial battleground states.

The Romney campaign's last-ditch attempt to put blue-leaning Midwestern swing states in play failed as Obama's Midwestern firewall sent the president back to the White House for four more years. Obama picked up the swing states of New Hampshire, Michigan, New Mexico, Iowa, Virginia, Wisconsin, Colorado, Nevada, Pennsylvania, Minnesota and Ohio. Of the swing states, Romney picked up only North Carolina. Florida is still too close to call, but even if Romney wins the state, Obama still beat him in the Electoral College vote. The popular vote will most likely be narrower than the president's decisive Electoral College victory.

In a sweeping victory speech early Wednesday morning, Obama thanked every American who voted, and vowed to work with leaders from both parties to tackle the country's challenges.
"Our economy is recovering, a decade of war is ending, a long campaign is now over," he told a crowd of cheering supporters in Chicago. "And whether I earned your vote or not, I have listened to you, I have learned from you and you have made me a better president." Obama added he has "never been more hopeful about America. ... We're not as divided as our politics suggest. We remain more than a collection of blue states and red states."

In his speech, he offered clues to the policy goals of his second term, which included a deficit reduction plan that combines tax increases with spending cuts, a comprehensive overhaul of the nation's federal immigration laws and tax reform. He called on Republicans to join him in achieving those goals.

The battle for the White House between Obama and Romney divided the nation, causing, at times, bitter disputes between the parties. Obama urged his supporters to look beyond the fight of the past several months and defended the process of choosing a president.
"I know that political campaigns can sometimes seem small, even  silly," Obama said. "And that provides plenty of fodder for the cynics who tell us  that politics is nothing more than a contest of evils or the domain of  special interests. If you ever get the chance to talk to folks who  turned out to our rallies and along the rope lines of high school gyms,  or saw folks working late at campaign office or some tiny county a long way from home, you'll discover something else." - Daily Income 1.5% for 100 days, 10 Impression Points per adport, Direct Referral 5%,   Binary Commission 10%, Minimum Investment and payout 20$

Monday, 5 November 2012

Is Alexa Affecting the Page Rank ?

Web information company Alexa publishes detailed Web statistics on its website, the most well-known of which is the Alexa Traffic Rank. Webmasters often refer to this as "Alexa Rank," which measures how popular a website is. Most website owners also keep track of their site's position in search engine results, or "SEO rank." You may have interest in both rankings if you own a website, but it is important to understand each ranking and the differences between the two to make good use of either one.
  1. Alexa Traffic Rank

    • Alexa bases its Traffic Rank on traffic data from Alexa toolbar users and other sources. Sites with higher scores supposedly receive more traffic and are more important. Because a large part of the ranking depends on how many Alexa toolbar users visit a website, it is possible to install the toolbar, visit your website repeatedly and artificially boost your Alexa Traffic Rank. Thus this rank is very easy to manipulate. Most webmasters view Alexa Rank as a mild curiosity rather than an important metric.

    Search Engine Rank

    • A website's search engine ranking, or "SEO rank" refers to the position of a site in search engine results for a given keyword. A site that appears first for a keyword has the highest possible ranking. Webmasters rely heavily on search engines for traffic, so SEO rank is extraordinarily important. A wide variety of factors such as the number of inbound links to a site and frequency of keywords on a website influence search engine rank. You can use search engine optimization (SEO) techniques to manipulate these factors and gain a better ranking.
    • A website's Alexa Traffic Rank has no impact on its position in search engines. Google, Yahoo, Bing and other search engines each have a unique algorithm for determining position on results pages. Alexa is a separate entity from these search engines and calculates Traffic Rank using its own technology for informational purposes only. Therefore it has no impact on search engine rank whatsoever.

    Usefulness of Alexa

    • Just because Alexa rank is easy to manipulate and has no impact on SEO does not mean it is completely useless. You can still use it to categorize websites based on traffic. Even with possible manipulation taken into account, a top-100 Alexa Rank website is clearly more popular than a site with a rank above 1,000 or even 1,000,000. As a site's Alexa rank improves, it becomes more difficult to obtain a better rank and thus manipulation is less common. This makes Alexa Traffic Rank useful for analyzing traffic trends on the most popular websites.