UpPromote - Affiliate Marketing Software

12 Affiliate Marketing Best Practices to Gain Success in 2024

With the lucrative nature of affiliate marketing, more and more brands are jumping in to take a bite. The fact is that over 81% of vendors worldwide use this scheme to boost their sales. How do ...

Written by

Reviewed by Stephen

14 min read
affiliate marketing best practices

With the lucrative nature of affiliate marketing, more and more brands are jumping in to take a bite. The fact is that over 81% of vendors worldwide use this scheme to boost their sales. How do you compete with others and achieve success?

Finding a practical approach is the key to winning this game. In this article, we’ll show you the affiliate marketing best practices that’ll set you apart. Refine your approach based on these tips, and you’ll take your campaign to the next level.

Let’s dive in!

12 Affiliate Marketing Best Practices for Beginners to Gain Success

Explore a curated list of 12 tactics to apply in different stages of your campaign, from affiliate recruitment to program promotion. Let’s get into the details!

Choose the right affiliate partners

Affiliates are the success generators of your affiliate program. As they perform effectively, you’ll see increases in traffic, conversions, and sales. Thus, it’s essential to look out for the right partners. Or else you’ll see a waste of time and resources.

So, how to find a good fit for your affiliate campaign?

  • Understand your niche target audience:

Look for partners whose audiences closely match your ideal customer profile. Plus, consider their niche expertise. This alignment ensures that your products are showcased to a target audience, increasing the likelihood of conversions.

For instance, partnering with bloggers specializing in skincare or makeup might result in greater success if you work in the beauty industry.

  • Check their reputation:

Ensure that your collaboration will not negatively impact the reputation of your brand. Consider assessing the affiliate’s online presence to evaluate their credibility and reliability.

For example, you can check their engaged following, comment sections, and reviews. Another good idea is to look for testimonials from brands they have previously collaborated with.

affiliate marketing best practices 1

  • Analyze their performance:

Besides reputation, dive into the performance of potential affiliates. This helps you decide whether their attendance is likely to benefit your program. Assess the data regarding conversion rates or engagement levels. Those who have a history of delivering results are preferred.

  • Quality over quantity:

Some might think that the more affiliates they have, the more sales they can get. Well, having a big team of low-quality affiliates makes no sense.

Thus, focus on quality instead. These affiliates will generate more compelling promotions, increasing the chance of success.

Plus, a quality-focused approach helps you easily control and organize.

Use affiliate marketing software

Another practice for affiliate marketing is finding smart companions to help manage your program. With clarity and detail in mind, UpPromote is proud to breathe fresh air into your affiliate marketing game.

Let’s review some primary features of our platform:

affiliate marketing best practices 2

  • Pro-active program management::

We take care of every aspect of your program, whether affiliate recruitment, payment, or fraud protection. Collaborating with us is a great way to save time and resources while ensuring elevated operation.

  • Diverse commission and motivation methods:

Benefit from our dynamic commission settings and compelling incentive structures. These offers act as a potent source of encouragement, leading your program to a new sales milestone.

  • Advanced marketing promotion:

We give you beyond the standard banner ads and coupons. Empower provided advanced assets to become an effective ambassador.

  • Real-time analytics and tracking:

With UpPromote, easily assess the performance of individual affiliates and track key metrics of your program. These timely insights help you understand how things are working. As a result, you can make data-driven decisions to refine your affiliate campaigns.

  • Automation features:

From automating affiliate onboarding to generating reports, embrace accuracy, convenience, and transparency with UpPromote.

Offer an enticing commission structure

The commission is the key factor that draws affiliates to your program. The more compelling it is, the higher the chance of successful recruitment. An enticing commission also acts as a powerful tool for motivation and retention. It keeps affiliates dedicated since they know the compensation meets their efforts.

affiliate marketing best practices 3

How to master this offering?

  • Research industry standards:

Understand how competitors and similar programs offer commissions. They act as a baseline that shapes your structure, ensuring it’s competitive enough to drive good results.

  • Consider your profit margins:

Offering an extremely high commission to attractive potential affiliates makes no sense. In fact, it may lead you to bankruptcy. Thus, take into account your profit margins before concluding with a number. Aim for competitive commissions while maintaining a healthy margin to ensure sustainability.

  • Transparent communication:

Transparency about affiliates’ benefits is essential to build trust. Clearly disclose your commissions, payments, and additional incentives in your program.

  • Regularly review and adjust:

Commissions are not one-size-fits-all. It can change depending on the industry trends, market conditions, and your products. Thus, reviewing your commission structure regularly and making reasonable adjustments is crucial.

  • Bonus tips:

Consider the tiered commission structures to motivate affiliates to scale their efforts. Simply put, they’ll receive higher commission rates as they achieve higher sales or reach a specific performance.

If you use the UpPromote app, consider implementing our auto-tier commission feature into your program for better affiliate motivation and, ultimately, seeing a performance boost.

affiliate marketing best practices 4

Work with an influencer

Influencers have proven their massive impacts on marketing over the last few years. Statistically, the term “influencer marketing” had a 400% increase in UK Google searches between 2016 and 2023. If it’s not convincing enough, spending on influencer marketing in the US reached $26.09 billion in 2023.

Regarding affiliate marketing, 59% of brands and advertising agencies also work with influencers. So, why is this partnership so attractive?

First, let’s talk about authenticity. Influencers often build trust with their audience through their reliable content. Research shows that 69% of customers believe in influencers’ product recommendations. This authenticity is an invaluable asset in driving engagement and conversions.

Second, partnering with them means expanding your reach to a dedicated and niche-related following. These potential customers might react positively to your affiliate marketing efforts.

affiliate marketing best practices 5

Besides, influencers will add a touch of diversity and engagement to your content. They elevate your brand image and capture the attention of different consumer segments.

So, benefits are limitless when it comes to influencer collaboration. However, it only becomes a reality when you take the right approach. It involves careful research, niche alignment, value suitability, and budget consideration.

Diversify your affiliate program

Focusing on only one specific group of affiliates is risky. Instead, cultivate a dynamic network of affiliates to let your brand thrive. How?

  • Work with affiliates of different sizes and influence

These affiliates will lead you to various audiences with different demographics, interests, and geographical locations. A great way to increase brand awareness!

  • Offer multiple partnership models

Not all affiliates are inclined to a single pay-per-lead or pay-per-sale model. Consider providing multiple partnership model to appeal to different affiliate types and uncover their strengths.

  • Keep up with changing market dynamics

To stay relevant and respond to industry changes (i.e., algorithm changes or shifts in consumer behavior), we recommend not overly depending on a single channel or strategy. Seeking affiliates working in different promotion platforms is a great idea to bring diversity to your program.

Apply coupon deals for customers

Brands often captivate customers by implementing coupon deals. It’s reasonable! Research shows that 83% of consumers said coupons changed how they shop.

Let’s face it: people love a good deal. They tend to visit an affiliate link that offers a discount code. This action leads to a higher click-through rate.

However, it might not stop at clicking but extend to purchasing or subscribing, increasing the conversion rate.

As you offer enticing coupon deals for affiliates, you encourage them to perform better. They’re promoting your brand and providing benefits to their audience simultaneously. This approach is a must-try when you want to enhance the effectiveness of the partnership.

Additionally, offering exclusive deals through affiliates contributes to building customer loyalty. They’ll find these deals filled with a sense of appreciation and reward. Ultimately, you can look forward to long-term loyalty and a positive customer experience.

You can use coupon codes to track your affiliates’s performance precisely. At UpPromote, we provide a simple way to activate tracking by coupons if you join our platform. It’s briefly shown in the picture below.

affiliate marketing best practices 6

Tips for using coupons:

– It’s better to create deals for specific audiences or promotions. This way, you can ensure that your offerings execute appropriately.

For instance, diversify discounts for first-time customers or seasonal affiliate marketing campaigns.

– Consider using limited-time coupons to foster urgency.

Reward top affiliates with bonuses and incentives

Everyone needs motivation to excel at their jobs, and so do your affiliates. Offering bonuses and incentives is a powerful means of encouraging. It’s the implication: “Hey, you’ve done great work. Here’s your reward. Keep progressing!”

What’s even more remarkable is that they’re not just one-time rewards. As affiliates feel valued, they will likely stay with your brand in the long run. This strategy is perfect for retaining the “treasure” of your program.

The fact is that bonuses are also a potent force for other members of your team. It creates an environment where everyone optimizes their approaches to become top affiliates.

Besides, it’s apparent how rewards can set your program apart and attract top-tier affiliates in the industry. This is a good sign for a dream network of affiliates who will boost your campaign’s growth.

affiliate marketing best practices 7

But how do you reward your top affiliates effectively?

Diversifying your incentives is a good idea. Beyond cash, consider exclusive product discounts, gift cards, early access to new offerings, etc.

We recommend structuring your rewards based on performance levels or specific goals and actions.

Promote your affiliate program through multiple channels

Brands tap into diverse platforms for several reasons:

Each platform has a potential audience. Promoting your program on a broader scale can attract a more extensive base of affiliates and potential customers.

Leveraging multiple channels is also perfect for reaching diverse affiliate demographics and preferences. They’ll color their program with expertise, specific niches, and promotional methods.

Grabbing the chance to enhance your brand image through multi-channel promotion. Your commitment comes along with your promotion, guiding affiliates toward your program.

So, don’t rely on only one trail. Jump onto ideal platforms, including:

  • On-site promotion:

Include a dedicated “Affiliate Program” page on your website with precise information. Consider placing it in the Header/Footer to make it easily found for everyone.

  • Social media:

Take advantage of real-time interactions on Facebook, Instagram, TikTok, Linkedin, etc. Plus, use the power of hashtags, engaging visuals, and influencer collaborations to create awareness within communities relevant to your brand.

affiliate marketing best practices 8

  • Search engine:

Promote your affiliate program by creating compelling content. It could include informative articles, case studies, or success stories that showcase the advantages of partnering with your brand.

  • Email marketing:

Email your existing customers or potential subscribers. Here, introduce your program and highlight the benefits of joining.

  • Forums and communities:

Find industry-specific forums where your potential affiliates gather. Remember, build trust and authority first before sharing your program.

Besides these popular methods, examine others, such as paid ads, affiliate directories, and virtual events. Allocate your engagement wisely and focus on those that attract the most high-quality affiliates.

Optimize your program with mobile use

According to Statista, mobile usage has constantly increased over the past four years. It’s projected to reach 7.49 billion users in 2025.

affiliate marketing best practices 9

Statcounter found that 50.48% of all web traffic originates from mobile devices.

Another study revealed that despite desktop internet usage’s clear dominance in North America at 64.47%, mobile internet usage is still quite important, making up 33.67%.

Since the prevalence of mobile devices has transformed consumer behavior, ensuring that your affiliate program is accessible and user-friendly on mobile platforms becomes essential.

What’s the solution?

– Make the affiliate registration and onboarding process user-friendly on smaller screens. This ensures you won’t miss any affiliates visiting your program via phone.

– Implement a responsive design for your program interface. Thanks to this, affiliates can access and manage their accounts conveniently, irrespective of their device.

– Provide your affiliates with mobile-compatible tracking and reporting tools. So, wherever they are, they can use their phones to track how well their strategy performs.

– Equip your affiliates with mobile-optimized promotional assets. These banners and images can be visually integrated into their content, providing a flawless display for mobile users.

Bonus tip: Leverage the mobile-specific channels, such as Instagram and TikTok, to enhance your affiliate program promotion and boost your brand awareness.

Regularly support and motivate your affiliate team

Affiliate support is an essential factor affecting the affiliate’s decision to join a program. As they dip their toes into your playground, they need consistent guidance and motivation throughout the journey. If you manage this aspect effectively, expect better performance and long-term collaboration with your partners.

How to support and nurture your team? Review some tips we’ve curated below:

First, establish clear lines of communication. It involves dedicated support channels like emails, live chat, and Q&A sessions. Prove to your team that you’re there whenever they need assistance.

affiliate marketing best practices 10

Second, note that affiliate marketers will perform much better when they receive helpful resources and training. Thus, provide educational materials or tutorials to help them understand your products, audience, and promotional strategies.

Besides, a rich set of marketing assets is essential to boost their promotional efforts. Explore the various promotional resources of UpPromote to attract your partners and encourage their creativity.

Third, regularly review their performance and provide invaluable feedback. This helps affiliates understand their campaign’s effectiveness and enables them to improve for better results.

Fourth, recognize affiliates for their excellent performance. It motivates them and inspires others to keep striving for success. Consider highlighting top affiliates through spotlights on your website or social media posts. Offering incentives like we’ve mentioned is another wise approach for motivation effect.

Finally, beyond the brand yourself, let members get support from others in your affiliate network. Build an affiliate forum or group where your team can hang out and share insights, tips, or success.

Set favorable terms and conditions

If you want your affiliates to confidently engage and contribute to the success of your program, ensure you create an environment with transparent and fair terms.

Here are some key elements to consider in building an ideal framework for your affiliate marketing program.

  • Competitive commission structures:

Clearly present commission structures to your affiliates. Whether it’s a percentage of revenue, a fixed rate per lead, or hybrid models, make sure your offer makes you a worthy one in the industry.

affiliate marketing best practices 11

  • Reasonable cookie duration:

A fair cookie lifespan will extend the affiliate’s chance of increasing passive income. Consider your sales cycle to come up with a reasonable number.

  • Reliable payments:

Provide flexibility in payment options so affiliates can conveniently receive earnings. Consider reliable methods, including bank transfers, PayPal, Payoneer, checks, etc. Besides, communicate the payout schedule and payment thresholds (if any). A timely payout, whether weekly or monthly, is a strong plus.

  • Minimal program restrictions:

List any restrictions regarding target demographics, promotional methods, or ad placements. It stops affiliates from any actions that damage your brand’s values and the overall partnership.

  • Transparent tracking and reporting:

Provide affiliates with reliable tools to track and evaluate their progress. Provide enough assistance as necessary.

Note: It’s crucial to regularly review and update affiliate agreements to adapt to program or industry changes. If there are any modifications, inform your team to let them follow and avoid unexpected violations.

Keep up-to-date with the latest trends

The world is moving fast. Everything can happen overnight, from industry shifts to emerging technologies to evolving consumer behaviors. Knowing what’s trending allows you to adapt your program accordingly.

Consider experimenting with new platforms or affiliate content formats to maximize your reach and engagement.

For instance, the rise of TikTok short-form video content presents an opportunity to connect with a younger audience. Or the increase in voice search requires you to adapt your content for voice-enabled devices and focus on optimizing for voice search queries.

Affiliates are likely to commit to brands that are sensitive to trends. So, how to stay up-to-date?

  • Follow related publications and blogs. Websites like Affiliate Summit or AffiliateWP regularly provide insights, news, and analyses of industry trends.

affiliate marketing best practices 12

  • Joining affiliate marketing conferences and events, such as Affiliate Summit East or Affiliate World Asia, is another great idea. Here, you can get valuable insights from real-time discussions, industry experts, and networking opportunities.
  • Engage with affiliate marketing forums where affiliates gather to share experiences and discuss trends.
  • Follow thought leaders and influencers. These people are “trend hunters.”. They’ll let you know what’s new in the market in the quickest way possible.
  • Analyze your program’s performance data. You can track traffic sources and conversion trends to identify what’s changing.

What Is Affiliate Marketing?

As a brand, you’re constantly looking for new ways to maximize your presence, broaden your customer base, and boost sales. Affiliate marketing is a powerful method that helps you achieve all of that.

This is a performance-based marketing strategy. It works by leveraging a network of affiliates, i.e., influencers, content creators, or businesses. These people will use their online presence to promote your products or services. In return, they’ll get commissions on successful referrals.

Let’s dig a little deeper!

You’ll approach affiliate marketing by setting up an ideal affiliate program first. It acts like an invitation, welcoming affiliates to join. You’ll include crucial information, such as requirements, benefits, and payments.

After that, recruit relevant affiliates via your website, social media platforms, email, etc. Those passes will conduct content to promote your offerings. It could be writing blog posts, sending emails, or uploading Instagram images.

As you set up your program, you can track affiliate’s performance. Then, you’ll pay affiliates for successful sales, leads, or desired actions, depending on the program rules.

Why Should You Use Affiliate Marketing?

Affiliate marketing is proving its massive impact on the market by showing an annual growth rate of 10% and a ratio of 16% of U.S. internet orders.

More and more brands are sharing a focus on this industry, with the presence of over 11,000 affiliate programs in the U.S. What’s the reason?

Let’s find out why you should join affiliate marketing by listing its benefits.

Audience reach expansion

Affiliates will promote your brand everywhere, from Google to Instagram to TikTok. It allows you to tap into new markets and approach a more extensive base of audiences.

Brand awareness and trust

The fact that influencers and content creators spread the word about your products or services helps increase your brand’s credibility. As a result, it becomes more appealing and reliable to potential customers.

Cost-effective growth engine

Your affiliates will earn commissions when they generate successful conversions. In short, you’ll only pay for the results. This minimizes upfront marketing expenses and ensures a return on investment with every sale.

Scalability and flexibility

Start small and scale up as it brings success. Scalability can happen in various aspects, from niches to promotional channels.

For instance, you can enter the affiliate industry with the yoga niche and promotional efforts on blogs and YouTube. You reward affiliates based on the CPA and CPM models. As your business grows, embrace other niches in the fitness and strength fields. Connect with diverse content creators on social media channels and podcasts. Pay them whenever they lead to qualified sales.

Stronger brand community

As you build affiliate relationships, you tap into greater engagement and loyalty from both customers and partners. This collaborative environment will spruce up your strategies, contributing to the program’s overall success.

Low entry barrier

Businesses of all sizes can engage in affiliate marketing. Know the market, understand your business, and craft an appropriate strategy.


  • What is the best method for affiliate marketing?

The best strategy for affiliate marketing is the one that meets your business value, goals, and resources. It’s not a single method but a compilation of strategic actions in different aspects, including program setting up, affiliate recruitment, promotion, tracking, and more.

  • What are the seven things to know before starting affiliate marketing?

Review seven crucial practices for affiliate marketing:

– Understand your niche and audience

– Set realistic goals and expectations

– Find appropriate partners

– Offer competitive commissions and incentives

– Provide valuable marketing materials and support

– Track and analyze affiliate performance

– Stay up-to-date

  • What are the three main types of affiliates?

Affiliate marketing includes three main types: unattached, related, and involved.

In unattached affiliate marketing, the affiliates have no connection with products. Affiliates in the related type will promote products aligned to their niche and expertise. When affiliates use the products and deeply understand them, they belong to the involved type – a trusted source of information.


The world of affiliate marketing is full of challenges. However, once you’ve mastered these affiliate marketing best practices, you’ll conquer every stage of the journey.

Revise each tactic to see how you can leverage it. Ensure that the applications align with your campaign’s goals and value.

Remember, success doesn’t take a night but long-term practice and improvements. Keep these affiliate marketing strategies updated whenever there’s a change in your objectives or customer behavior.

Now, it’s time to take action and shine!

Ellie Tran, a seasoned SEO content writer with three years of experience in the eCommerce world. Being a part of the UpPromote team, Ellie wants to assist Shopify merchants in achieving success through useful content & actionable insights. Ellie's commitment to learning never stops; she's always eager to gain more knowledge about SEO and content marketing to create valuable content for users. When she's not working on content, Ellie enjoys baking and exploring new places.