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  1. #1
    Join Date
    January 29th, 2008
    AM advice
    Hi There,

    I am new to these forums and hope I am posting in the correct place.

    We are looking into hiring an affiliate manager. I have been reading up on ABW (an excellent resource) and on the whole affiliate management concept.

    My partner and i would like to know if we can budget and afford an affiliate program. My question to the managers and merchants who have successful affiliate programs who use managers is:

    How long is does it take for a program to start seeing sales results once it has started? Not necessarily showing profits, but a nice stream of sales. How long does it usually take for for a program to show profits?

    Lets assume that our website is up to snuff and that we are a small niche market.

    I would appreciate any advice, as we have no clue as to how much we need in order to begin to budget for our program and a manager.


  2. #2
    Moderator MichaelColey's Avatar
    Join Date
    January 18th, 2005
    Mansfield, TX
    I moved your thread here to the "Becoming A Merchant" forum.

    There's some good discussion about the amount of time it takes to ramp up programs in this thread. It often takes a good OPM 6-12 months or longer to start generating good results.

    As for whether or not your site is up to snuff, there are a lot of things that aren't obvious and that a good OPM can help you identify. I'm sure you'll hear from some after posting here. If you're more interested in doing it yourself (or at least educating yourself so you can make an OPM's job easier), read through some of the links in my signature.
    Michael Coley
     Affiliate Tips | Merchant Best Practices | Affiliate Friendly? | Couponing | CPA Networks? | ABW Tips | Activating Affiliates
    "Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world." Nelson Mandela

  3. #3
    Newbie Rolet's Avatar
    Join Date
    October 13th, 2007
    Kansas City, Mo
    I would be more than happy to discuss your site and potential program with you.

    There are many of us OPM's on the board and each can offer you information. If you are interested in speaking, please email me at ajanssen at rolet dot com

  4. #4
    Outsourced Program Manager Stephanie Harris's Avatar
    Join Date
    October 11th, 2006
    New York
    I agree with what Michael said - we tell our clients to be prepared for a six - twelve month ramp up period, more or less depending on the vertical and the response that the program gets in the marketplace. It is also super-important to be realistic about the kind of revenue your site currently does and assume an average of an additional 10% in affiliate sales. That is an industry benchmark that we use to give a rough idea of what the affiliate channel will generate for a website.

    Also, many OPMs will look at your current site revenue to see if you can afford their services and if the program is viable from their point of view. In other words, if your website is still getting off the ground, many OPMs will like to see more growth in the overall sales of the website before committing to an affiliate program because there are monthly retainer fees to worry about in addition to paying commissions. And these sunken fees are something that you'll be expected to pay even in the ramp up phase to compensate the OPM for their work. You'll want to make sure that if you are thinking of becoming a merchant and starting an affiliate program that you can cover these costs even when your affiliate program is not generating much each month.

    Like Rolet mentioned, you have a great selection of OPMs on ABW that can give you a great overview of what you can expect and whether you are at the point in your business where you're ready to take on an affiliate program. If you are interested in discussing this further, my contact information is on my auto-sig.

    Good luck!
    Stephanie Harris
    Schaaf Consulting
    p/f: 323.386.2338
    AIM: stephschaafco |
    Our Programs: Baby Catalog | Blue Bee | Constant Contact | CourseSmart | ForMeToCoupon | Homestead | InTheSwim | Ipsos Survey Panel | | Moosejaw | Mrs. Prindables | Payless ShoeSource | simply youth ministry | | Specialty Pool Products

  5. #5
    Full Member ske9963's Avatar
    Join Date
    January 3rd, 2006
    At least 4-5 months to see some results, I would think
    Ma, where the beer? :escape:

  6. #6
    OPM and Moderator Chuck Hamrick's Avatar
    Join Date
    April 5th, 2005
    Park City Utah
    I ask these leading questions before continuing a conversation on launching a program:

    What is your overall site conversion, average order?
    What is your monthly revenue?
    What marketing are you already doing?
    What is your marketing budget and what is the affiliate program portion.

    If you are not already generating revenue with a reasonable conversion then you shouldn't consider an affiliate program. If you are driving traffic to your site and it isn't converting there is no magic threshold where it will suddenly convert.

    I remember driving 2000 unique visitors a month to a site and not converting. So, we added an affiliate program and drove 20,000 uniques per month and guess what? It still didn't convert!

    Affiliate marketing is not the first step to online marketing, its one of the last. It also not branding!

  7. #7
    Join Date
    January 29th, 2008
    Thank You
    I want to thank everyone for taking time to reply to my question. I need to sit down with my partner and review our budget for the next year. Once again thank you for your help !!!!

  8. #8
    Outsourced Program Manager John Jupp's Avatar
    Join Date
    January 23rd, 2005
    Quote Originally Posted by ske9963
    At least 4-5 months to see some results, I would think
    May as well pin the tail in the donkey.

    Whats the niche.
    Whats the product range
    Whats the demographics
    Whats the Geographics
    Whats the delivery cost
    Whats the delivery time
    Whats the payment solution
    Whats the site design like
    Whats the business plan
    Whats the long term aim

    Need to know all that and loads more before even putting together a plan for anyone.
    Flambi Media Limited - USA/UK/EU Affiliate Management Expertise

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