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  1. #1
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    Am I paying enough affiliates to sell my software?
    I created an eBay software for buyers. I think it offers some nice features that other programs do not offer (most of the other popular ones focus mostly on sniping). So far I'm getting good feedback from people trying it out and I just recently got my first paid customer.

    Currently I'm concentrating on selling it myself so I can show that it converts (as advised on this forum) but I want to have my affiliate details set sooner rather than later.

    I charge $20 per year for the software and offer affiliates either 30% of annual subscription or 20% for life. Is this enough to attract good affiliates?

  2. #2
    OPM and Moderator Chuck Hamrick's Avatar
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    What is your competition charging and what are they paying affiliates?

  3. #3
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    There is only 1 program I found that offers very similar functionality to my software and it has more options. They charge $70 one-time payment. It's install #2 below.

    Other than that, there are a lot of snipers (I think all the ones that are web based provide sniping service only) so my software competes with them as well but offers other functionality that I believe adds value. This is not every program out there. Those are the most popular ones that I was able to find:

    Online #1 (Sniper Only)
    No affiliate program
    Free basic service. $6 per year for premium. Makes money through adds

    Online #2 (Sniper Only)
    Offers 3 free snips for each person referred
    Charges per snipe - 1% of final price ($0.25 min - $9.95 max)

    Online #3 (Sniper Only)
    Affiliates get $10 per customer
    Annual subscription is $50 or 10 snipes are $20

    Install #1 (Sniper only)
    Can't find affiliate program
    Costs $15 for first year. $10 after that

    Install #2 (Sniper, BIN scanner, Ending auction scanner + more)
    I found one place where it states affiliates get 25% but could not confirm on website
    Costs $70 one-time payment

    Install #3 (Sniper Only)
    Can't find affiliate program
    Costs $20 first year. $10 after that

    If my software takes off and I have customers who want it and are willing to pay extra for it, I could add web based sniping in the future, where software could synchronize with server so user PC does not have to stay on.

  4. #4
    OPM and Moderator Chuck Hamrick's Avatar
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    Looks like there is very little competition. You seem less competitive on flat commission for the one clear affiliate program. But you are less expensive. I would suspect that there are few affiliates promoting that program but could be wrong. Look at a traffic number like Compete or Quantcast to see what they get for unique monthly visitors. Do they use an affiliate network?

  5. #5
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    Yes, they use ShareASale.

    Compete shows them as 11,200 unique visitors and rank of 141,700.
    Quantcast shows 14,800 people and US rank of 96,700.

    For the last few days, I've been questioning my pricing strategy. Originally, $20 sounded good compared to what others offered. I thought that if I price it much lower, I won't make money and if I price it much higher, I won't get subscribers. $20 sounded like a good number. Now I'm thinking that maybe, I should price it higher (around $30). Any thoughts on that?

  6. #6
    OPM and Moderator Chuck Hamrick's Avatar
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    Are you sending paid search traffic to your site? Sounds like the competition is low so you should be able to do so at a reasonable cost.

  7. #7
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    Yes, I started doing paid advertisement. I've set up AdWords and started experimenting with that, I set up Facebook Add and started running it. So far I'm bidding low so my adds do not show very often and in the last week, I only got handful of clicks.

    I'm also experimenting with download site for pay per download but so far I'm not getting much traffic. I think the keywords I set up do not get enough exposure. I just added broader keyword yesterday "ebay" so we'll see how that goes.

    Finally, I have reddit add scheduled for 3 days starting Thursday, where I'm sending it to homepage through affiliate link so I should be able to see what kind of conversion I get and get detailed tracking (how many people click the add, how many create free account, how many actually start the software and finally how many become paid subscribers).

    The competition for sniper is not that low as all those online sniper services plus some other ones I didn't mention are advertising. Competition for the other features is fairy low but not many people search for it.

  8. #8
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    I've decided to raise the price of the software to $29.95 per year. I believe the software is worth the price for what it offers and if I see that it's too much, I think it would be easier to lower the price later on rather than try to raise it. I probably will need to send out e-mail to people who already created free trial accounts and offer them old price.

    Also, I decided to raise the affiliate commission to 40% of first year's subscription or 25% for life. Hopefully this will be enough to attract good affiliates and it will make up for higher price.

    I hope this move was not a mistake. What do you think about it?

  9. #9
    Outsourced Program Manager Chris -  AMWSO's Avatar
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    One thing to consider is what you want your public offer to be and what do you want to offer your best partners, if your max offer is 40% then you leave yourself no room to negotiate with your partners, or to offer incentives.

    Life time commissions are always attractive, especially if the software is useful and has a very painless renewal process.

    Cheers

    Chris
    Affiliate Marketing by AMWSO. Skype - chrissanderson ::: TEL 1-720-336-1784 ::: www.amwso.net
    Join our affiliate programs :Vaper Empire, Iolo, Art of Tea, or See ALL our Programs here

  10. #10
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    Thanks Chris. I gave myself room to give incentives to customers who tried the software out for 30 days and did not subscribe but I didn't think about affiliate partners.

  11. #11
    OPM and Moderator Chuck Hamrick's Avatar
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    What are you using for affiliate tracking?

  12. #12
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    I created my own affiliate tracking using cookies/database tables.

    Once customer comes to my website using affiliate link, I create a cookie that's good for a year. When they create a free trial account, I associate affiliate ID with that customer in the database.

    I created a members page where affiliates can log in and see all the people that came to the website using their affiliate link (date, first name, part of IP address, etc). They can also see who created trial account and finally who became paid subscriber. That info is updated in real time.

    I've tested it with my eBay about me page and everything seems to be working. Starting tomorrow I'm running a reddit add with a brand new affiliate ID so I'm hoping that it will be a good test as I'll be able to compare number of clicks with website hits, accounts created and subscribers (if there are any).

    Also, once I get a few active affiliates, I'll ask them to test the entire process, including payment and I'll issue them refunds.

  13. #13
    OPM and Moderator Chuck Hamrick's Avatar
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    You may have issues getting affiliates to join without a known tracking system. I guess its worth promoting and you can buy an ad here cheaply.

  14. #14
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    I'll definitely consider promoting here once I get some paid customers and when I think the affiliate program is ready.

    If I can't find affiliates who want to use my homegrown system, I'm thinking that I could offer alternative with lower commission. The reason I decided to do my own tracking was because when I calculated the cost, I think it was coming to over 10% and I'd rather give that to affiliates.

    Doing the tracking myself was not complicated. What I didn't consider was trust. If affiliates don't know you or are not sure if they'll get paid, they will be hesitant to join. Do you think this was a bad move and something that's really going to be a turn off for affiliates? At this stage, I could still change it.

  15. #15
    OPM and Moderator Chuck Hamrick's Avatar
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    You have no street credibility. If some simple promotion gets you sign-ups and sales then run with the white label.

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