From blogs to YouTube videos, affiliate marketing is used across various social media platforms. As a matter of fact, according to the Saas Scout’s Affiliate Marketing Statistics and Trends Globally Industry Report 2021, the annual affiliate marketing spending is estimated at $12 billion. What’s more, it’s expected to increase by 10% in the next couple of years.
Considering that with this type of marketing campaign online stores only have to spend money when they make money, it makes complete sense why affiliate marketing is growing in popularity. If you haven’t explored this avenue yet or you’re currently struggling to make the most of it, here are 10 software solutions that will do all the heavy lifting for you.
Top 10 Affiliate Marketing Software to Increase Your eCommerce Sales:
Why Should You Use Affiliate Marketing?
Affiliate marketing can be an effective, low-risk and low-cost marketing strategy for smaller online stores with limited marketing budgets. In short, the beauty of affiliate marketing is that it can help you to reach more potential customers faster without necessarily increasing your marketing spend. The only things you basically need to concentrate on are to create content, spread the word about your program, and manage your affiliates.
As virtually everything can be tracked, it also makes it easier to measure the ROI. With the help of the right software, you can easily view data on sales, impressions, leads, and clicks via a dashboard.
Depending on the software that you use, you can also concentrate on selling specific high-ticket items. This way, you can ask your affiliates to promote only a select few products in return for a higher commission. Alternatively, if there are certain items that have a low turnover rate, you can instead ask your network of affiliates to concentrate on these to help you get rid of excess stock.
10 Affiliate Marketing Tools to Put Your Program on Autopilot
Refersion was founded in 2014 and in just two years, the team managed to turn it from a beta product into a profitable company without the help of investors. In 2020, it was acquired by Assembly, an eCommerce growth platform that brings together software solutions to help brands with social performance and performance analytics. So, considering their focus on the eCommerce niche, it makes it a good choice for online stores dipping their toes into affiliate marketing.
During its seven years in business, Refersion has helped almost 20,000 merchants with their affiliate marketing campaigns. Unlike many of the other tools on our list, it also offers its own marketplace where you can find new affiliates. If you do decide on Refersion, your affiliate program will get listed free of charge on this marketplace. While existing customers still make the best affiliates, the Refersion Marketplace can help to speed up the process of growing your network of affiliates.
One of its features that stand out is the ability to set unique commissions by product or SKU. This way, items with lower margins can be paired with a lower commission rate and vice versa. All in all, this is a great way to encourage your affiliates to refer products that have a higher margin.
- Integrates seamlessly with the main eCommerce platforms such as BigCommerce, Shopify and Magento
- Free listing on the Refersion Marketplace
- Fully customizable sign-up page
- Product-level commissions allow you to customize your affiliate marketing offer for individual products
- Custom form fields for collecting additional details
- Customizable registration pages to match your branding
Pricing: After the free 14-day trial, pricing starts at $89 per month for up to 130 monthly affiliate orders.
With over two decades of experience offering affiliate tracking software, iDevAffiliate has helped more than 35,000 customers making it one of the leading tools if you want to explore affiliate marketing. All in all, it’s easy to get started thanks to the step-by-step built-in onboarding process. If you get stuck, it also offers access to more than 40 hours of training videos.
Not only is it easy to use, but also very convenient thanks to the coupon code tracking. This way, you can assign coupon codes to your affiliates instead of confusing links or annoying redirects that can look unprofessional. Since no links are needed, it also means that you can take advantage of word-of-mouth and offline marketing.
Like a number of other tools, it also offers multi-tier marketing (10 tiers to be exact). With this feature, your affiliates will be able to earn more by recruiting other affiliates. While it’s not necessarily a major perk in our books, it is an opportunity that you can explore.
- Detailed metrics and reports
- Works with a number of the most popular shopping cart partners including BigCommerce, Shopify, and Ecwid
- An account import function for importing affiliates from an existing program
- At-a-glance dashboards
- Real-time commission processing
- Social media sharing
Pricing: Pricing starts at $39 per month.
LeadDyno is a good tool if your goal is to automate and grow your online store’s affiliate program. Founded in 2014, it’s one of the affiliate marketing software solutions that offer the most flexibility regarding pricing. Many tools in this niche offer a type of starter plan and an enterprise plan, but LeadDyno offers six subscription plans in total. Three plans are aimed at websites that attract fewer than 7,500 unique visitors per month, while the other three cater for websites that attract anything over that.
Overall, it’s simple to set up and use. If you need help getting started, the customer support team offers weekly demos and workshops and there’s the setup wizard as well.
While it’s impossible to mention every single feature, there are two useful features that deserve to be highlighted. One is the ability to invite customers automatically. The other feature is the ability to keep track of your other marketing efforts in addition to measuring the number of clicks, sales, and leads.
There’s, however, one major drawback. LeadDyno doesn’t give its users the ability to select how they want to reward their affiliates. You can only set up the reward to be a percentage of a sale or a fixed amount.
- Pay affiliates in bulk with PayPal Mass Pay
- Integrations with the top eCommerce platforms that include WooCommerce, Shopify, and BigCommerce
- Support by means of live chat, email, and online appointments
- Paid ads, social media, and email marketing can be tracked via one dashboard
- Automatic follow-up emails
- Branded affiliate portal
- Multi-level marketing
Pricing: After a free 30-day trial, pricing starts at $49 per month for sites with up to 3,000 unique visitors per month.
You might be familiar with Referral Rock as one of the top referral program software solutions available that can help you to take advantage of word-of-mouth advertising. In addition, it also offers partner and affiliate marketing software to help ensure your best affiliates stay engaged.
It offers more than 25 integrations that include integrations with the main eCommerce platforms like Shopify, Magento, Squarespace, and 3dcart. With it, you can promote your affiliate marketing program on a number of marketing channels like, for example, embedding it in your site.
One of its most attractive features is that it offers highly configurable reward options. From time-based offers to recurring rewards, there are many types of incentives that you can create that will draw attention.
All plans include comprehensive support. Not only will you have a dedicated success manager, but there will also be a kickoff call, program audits, technical integration assistance, and referral best practice training.
However, it does come at a price. So, it’s not the most suitable option for eCommerce business owners on a shoestring budget.
- Multiple incentive structures
- Referral attribution and activity tracking
- Automatic payouts
- Advanced reward rules
- Triggered emails
- Social media sharing
- Downloadable reports and activity tracking
- Team accounts
Pricing: Plans start at $200 per month.
Boasting an impressive 4.9 rating on Capterra, Omnistar Affiliate is one of the most highly rated and reviewed affiliate software solutions. It’s used by 16,000 businesses from various industries that include real estate, healthcare, and eCommerce. If you’re going to be using it to help with your eCommerce store, you’ll be happy to know that it integrates with thousands of apps, including Shopify, WooCommerce, BigCommerce, and Squarespace.
While on the topic of integrations, Omnistar Affiliate also includes full integration with LinkedIn, Facebook, and Twitter. This means that your affiliates will have no issue sharing their link across these leading social networks for more exposure.
Similarly to Refersion, it also has its own exclusive directory where you can find affiliates. This can come in handy if you’re searching for people who are more knowledgeable about affiliate marketing than your pool of customers.
Alternatively, it can help you to identify your most loyal customers by means of a single-question survey. This way, customers who rated their experience with your store as very positive can automatically be included into your program. This auto signup feature can be a real timesaver. Plus, it simply makes it much easier if you want to scale your program as quickly as possible.
Then, to keep your affiliates engaged and motivated, you can share email templates and upload banners or other creative digital assets that they can use to forward to their network. Not only does this help you to keep the branding more consistent, but it also makes it much easier for affiliates to promote your products. After all, if it’s too much work for your affiliates to promote your products your affiliate program won’t take off.
- Social media sharing
- Exclusive influencer directory
- User-friendly setup wizard
- Multi-level marketing
- Promo code tracking
- Various rewards available that include commissions, coupons, gift cards, and discounts
Pricing: After its free 15-day trial, pricing starts at $47 per month.
For those eCommerce business owners who are fortunate to have bigger budgets and a team of employees that can help them with marketing, Tapfiliate is a good possibility to explore. As part of its Pro plan, you can add up to 5 team members who can help you to run your affiliate marketing program.
Overall, it’s reliable and easy to use. Not only does it include a very easy onboarding process, but it also offers learning resources about affiliate marketing in general. This extra information was compiled by experts on affiliate marketing and will help you to scale your marketing program quickly.
One of its cons is that, similarly to LeadDyno, you can only pay your affiliates a fixed amount or a percentage. It also doesn’t do automatic payouts and you’ll still have to complete the actual payouts, but if you’ve selected PayPal as your payout method the mass payout feature will save you time.
On the upside, Tapfiliate gives you a few ways to attract affiliates. You can add them by means of an invite URL, a single sign-on (available to enterprise clients), the API, or manually. Another key benefit is that it also integrates with Mailchimp which means that you can create email drip campaigns to ensure your affiliates stay informed.
- Multi-level marketing
- Built-in analytics
- Shareable social media posts for affiliates
- Branded dashboard
- Custom sign-up fields and payout methods
- Performance bonuses
- Integrations with the major eCommerce platforms including Shopify, BigCommerce, PrestaShop, and Volusion
Pricing: After a free 14-day trial, pricing starts at $69 per month.
Post Affiliate Pro is one of the oldest affiliate software solutions and has been in the business for almost two decades. Boasting close to 500 reviews on Capterra, it’s the affiliate software solution that has received the most reviews (and that by a long shot). With a review score of 4.6, it’s also one of the tools with the best scores on the review website.
It’s a full-featured affiliate software that has a long list of features and over 200 integrations, making it straightforward to customize your affiliate program to fit your brand. To ensure that both eCommerce merchants and affiliates stay up to speed, it has two panels - one for merchants and one for affiliates.
It really focuses a lot on banners. From flash banners to lightbox banners to simple PDF banners, there’s a wide range of banner types that you can create to offer your special promotions.
Its software mainly caters to small and medium businesses. However, considering that it’s almost double the price of some of the other tools on our list, be sure to do your homework first.
- Round-the-clock customer support
- Free full setup and website integration
- Advanced reporting
- Customizable interface and themes
- Fraud protection
- Mass payments
- Multi-tier commissions
Pricing: After a free 14-day trial, pricing starts at $97 per month.
Trusted by over 30,000 online stores, ReferralCandy is one of the leading affiliate marketing solutions that works for any kind of business. In fact, according to its website, its top retailers made 26% more sales from referrals the previous month.
Not only does it integrate seamlessly with the primary eCommerce platforms, but it’s also simple to integrate your email and other marketing apps. You can basically automate your entire affiliate marketing program with the help of ReferralCandy.
One of the standout features of ReferralCandy is that it offers you various easy ways to recruit affiliates. You can, for example, invite your customers immediately after check out or, if you’re more eager to get the ball rolling, you can invite your entire mailing list. It also offers you different ways to reward your affiliates that include cash rewards and even custom gifts.
All in all, if you sign up with ReferralCandy you can get a sweet deal. However, just take note of its pricing structure. Unlike many of the other affiliate marketing solutions, ReferralCandy charges a commission on top of its monthly fee. This type of pricing plan makes it a lot more difficult to stick to a budget. So, be sure to consider this before signing up.
- Rewards are paid out automatically
- Actionable analytics and data-driven insights by industry benchmarks and top referrers
- Integration with the main eCommerce platforms that include BigCommerce, Magento, Shopify Plus and Shopify
- Live chat support
- Fraud detection
- Easy-to-use customization
Pricing: After a free 30-day trial, pricing starts at $49 per month per commission according to its tiered commission rate.
Depending on your needs, Affiliatly is the cheapest affiliate marketing software on our list. From as little as $16 per month, you can access all its features for up to 50 affiliates. What’s more, it also offers the longest free trial period — a whopping 90 days!
One of its most attractive features is that you can use it to set different commission tiers. You can, for example, use the total number of purchases, total sales amount, or number of referred visitors associated with that affiliate. If you prefer to reward your affiliates with gift cards for your online store, you can also do that.
Another feature that we love is the leaderboard. You can use it to create a top 10 list that sorts your affiliates by earnings. This extra feature can help to motivate your affiliates which in return can increase your eCommerce sales. Plus, it's a straightforward way for you to identify who your top performing affiliates are at a glance.
All in all, it’s a good tool to check out, even if it’s only for the price. While it has only 10 reviews on Capterra, all these users have given its software 5 out of 5.
- Different incentives
- Customized pop-up window to fit your branding
- Email customization
- Two-tiered marketing
- Tracking by SKU
Pricing: After a free 90-day trial, pricing starts at $16 per month.
Similarly to iDevAffiliate, Everflow lets you track the performance of your affiliate marketing program without unsightly links. It also offers a curated partner marketplace, EverXChange, that you can use to find handpicked partners that will help you to boost your eCommerce sales.
Thanks to its instant Shopify integration, it’s especially useful if you want to set up a Shopify affiliate marketing program. The app will automatically handle the direct linking tracking setup in just a few clicks. In addition to Shopify, it also offers integration with other eCommerce platforms like BigCommerce, Webflow, and Weebly.
However, its cheapest plan starts at $750 per month. So, there’s a reason why we featured this software last. There are many other powerful solutions that will work out much more cost-effective.
- Deep reporting and analysis
- Integrations with major anti-fraud vendors
- Banner management
- Round-the-clock customer support
Pricing: Pricing starts at $750 per month.
Wrapping Things Up
By investing in one of these tools, it becomes much easier to manage your affiliate program and affiliates. This will leave you with more time to focus on finding the right affiliates and creating captivating content.
That being said, take your time to research the different tools available. While we featured only 10 software solutions, there are many that you can choose from. At the end of the day, the right tool should be able to create links and banner ads and take care of the admin tasks, at the very least.
All of the tools that we discussed offer either some form of free trial or demo. Take advantage of this before you make any financial commitments. Also, be sure to pay attention to online reputation. There are a number of review websites that you can check out before making your final decision.
And, if you’re not convinced about trying out affiliate marketing yet, consider this — more than 80% of brands are already using affiliate programs. What’s more, almost 40% of marketers agree that it’s one of the top marketing strategies for attracting new customers. As you only pay for actual results, there’s not a lot that you can lose by giving it a try at least.