7 Important Things To Check Before Joining An Affiliate Program

Joining an affiliate program is free. But that doesn’t mean that you’ll be joining an affiliate program without checking anything. If you do so, it will cost you later.

It costed me a lot. One of my high performing affiliates banned me because of some term issues. Before that, I couldn’t withdraw some money from an affiliate because of not having a convenient payment method.

All of these could be avoided if I would check few things before joining the affiliate programs.

If you are in affiliate marketing, read on. In this post, I will be sharing few essential things that you need to check before joining an affiliate program. 

1. Payment Methods

It’s the most important thing to check if you are from one of the PayPal unsupported countries. As most of the affiliates pay via PayPal, it would be tough for you to get the payment if you don’t have access to PayPal. (Check: PayPal Alternatives)

So make sure that the affiliate program you are about to join has other payment methods like Direct Bank Deposit or Cheque.

From my personal experience, I’ve found that withdrawing money from cheque is critical. That’s why I use Direct Deposit. To make things easier, I am using Payoneer Global Payment Service.

Deal Alert: Sign Up Payoneer & Get $50

2. Minimum Payout

Checking minimum payout is very crucial. Some of the affiliates try to scam people with high payout rate. There is no reason to join an affiliate program which minimum payout is $500.

If the payout amount is high, you might lose the motivation before hitting the minimum payout. So make sure that the minimum payout is not more than $100.

Here are some of the best affiliate networks with the minimum payout.

3. Cookie Duration

A cookie is a small piece of data that stores on users’ browser when they click on affiliate links. This is the technology that affiliate programs use to track sales.

Cookie has an expiry date. That means after the expiration date, you will not get the affiliate sale even if the user makes a purchase. So cookie duration of your affiliate matters a lot.

Normal cookie duration is 30-90 days. There are some exceptions like Amazon’s 24 hours cookie duration. But it’s not a problem as Amazon’s conversion rate is pretty high.

So take a look at the cookie duration of your affiliate.

4. In-house Program Vs Affiliate Network

Some of the products/services have an affiliate program on both in-house and in a network. I always prefer in-house affiliate program as the product owners directly manage the programs. But there are some cases when Affiliate Network is a better choice than the in-house.

Here are some of those cases.

  • If the minimum payout amount is high, then it’s better to join the affiliate network.
  • If you are already a member of the affiliate network, you can consider joining the program via Network.
  • If you are not sure whether you will be promoting the product in future, join Affiliate Network.

5. Commission Rates

Commission Rates shouldn’t be a deciding factor. But it’s important to check the rate because you deserve to get the payment according to your efforts.

Ordinarily, digital products offer high commission rates than the physical products. For digital products, commission rates vary from 30% to 70%. And for physical products, the range of rate is 1% - 10%.

6. Check The Terms & Conditions

We often overpass terms and conditions of the affiliate programs. But it’s important to check the terms and conditions to be on the safe side. Recently I got banned from one of my high performing affiliate programs because of a term issue.

Here are some of the common terms and conditions you should keep in mind while promoting a product/service.

  • You are not allowed to buy through your own affiliate link.
  • You are not allowed to bid on brand keywords on PPC.
  • You are not allowed to offer cashback.
  • Coupon code sites are not allowed.
  • You are not allowed to use any spammy promotional methods.

These are the common terms and conditions. There might be some others. So it’s better to check the terms and conditions while joining an affiliate program.

7. Reputation & Popularity of the Products/Services

Even if it’s the last point, it’s very crucial. When you are promoting a product/service, you are helping your visitors to solve a problem.

You will always have to keep in mind that you are helping your visitors. If you end up promoting a bad product/service, it will hamper your blog credibility. So stay away from harmful products/services.

Check the reputation and popularity of the products/services before joining the affiliate programs. It’s also vital for conversion rates.

Over To You

So these are the things that I check before joining an affiliate program. If you check any other stuff, let us know via comment.

And if you found this post useful, please help me by sharing this post on Facebook, Twitter, or Google+.

  • Apon Babu says:

    Hi Istiak!
    Great Article. I have a blog on marketing and blogging. Can you tell me, how can I get approved from ShareASale? What is the minimum requirement of ShareASale to get approved? because, I saw that, you are an affiliate of Shareasale.

  • Akshat says:

    Can you suggest some good affiliate marketing programs for computer hardware and PC gaming niche? Thanks !