Go Direct to Make More Money From Your Affiliate Links

SplitShire_9434-768x512When it comes to monetizing your fashion blog with affiliate marketing, there are a couple of ways to get started:

  1. Work with a company directly by applying to their program—usually via their own software or through a large network like ShareASale.
  2. Join an affiliate aggregator – such as Skimlinks or Shopstyle Collective – to promote thousands of companies with a single login.

As someone who’s been involved in the affiliate industry for nearly a decade—as both an affiliate and an affiliate manager—I spend a lot of time analyzing sites to see how bloggers approach the above scenarios.

In most industries, bloggers work directly with companies and use aggregators as a secondary technique. However, the fashion industry is unique because most bloggers, including the biggest ones, mainly or exclusively work with affiliate aggregators.

And it makes sense, doesn’t it? With the high volume of products being featured on fashion blogs, aggregators are an attractive choice for any time-strapped blogger who wants access to a variety of programs, without having to deal with multiple logins or link management.

The thing is, there are some surprising benefits to working directly with a company that you may not know about.

Here’s why you should consider going direct:

  • No Fees—Aggregators usually take a percentage of your commission, whereas when you work directly with a company, there are no fees. In fact, the companies pay those fees straight to the network where they host their program. While many aggregators negotiate higher commission rates for certain programs, when you crunch the numbers to include their fees, you’re earning the same or less than what you would if you go direct.
  • No Minimums—Some aggregators won’t accept your site if your traffic level or social media following doesn’t meet a certain threshold. When joining a company’s affiliate program directly, those requirements rarely exist so you don’t need to worry about how established you are before applying. Grab my affiliate application guide to learn more.
  • More Programs—I know of several companies with high commission rates that only work directly with affiliates, such as Shopify. You won’t want to miss out on these incredible opportunities by exclusively working with aggregators.
  • Relationship Building – Affiliate managers love building relationships with their affiliates. By going direct, you can build up a rapport that can lead to some pretty sweet perks including higher commission rates and exclusive landing pages.

Exciting, right?

To help you explore the non-aggregator path, here are 17 affiliate programs you can join directly as a fashion blogger:

Cupshe

Commission: 15% per sale

Cookie Length: 30 days

NET-A-PORTER

Commission: 6% per sale

Cookie Length: 30 days

ModCloth

Commission: 7% per sale

Cookie Length: 45 days

Kiyonna

Commission: 8% per sale

Cookie Length: 60 days

Stella Valle

Commission: 30% per sale

Cookie Length: 90 days

Maurices

Commission: 4-8% per sale

Cookie Length: 30 days

Reebok

Commission: 7% per sale

Cookie Length: 30 days

Zazzle

Commission: 15-17% per sale

Cookie Length: 45 days

Alternative Apparel

Commission: 6-8% per sale

Cookie Length: 30 days

MyTheresa.com

Commission: 10% per sale

Cookie Length: 30 days

Zulily

Commission: up to 10% per sale

Cookie Length: 7 days

Rent the Runway

Commission: 7% per sale

Cookie Length: 30 days

Etsy

Commission: 4% per sale

Cookie Length: 30 days

Target

Commission: 5-8% per sale / $4-6 per guest registry creation

Cookie Length: 7 days

Madison Reed

Commission: $20 per sale by new customers / $10 for affiliate referrals

Cookie Length: 30 days

Gymboree

Commission: 8% per sale

Cookie Length: 30 days

My Little Jules

Commission: 7% per sale / 1-3% two-tier commissions

Cookie Length: 60 days

What other fashion programs do you like working with directly? I’d love to hear your thoughts in the comments below.

[Photo via SplitShire]

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  1. Lisette

    Amazon affiliate network is the oldest on the market with the highest conversion rates so that’s probably worth including as they’re the largest retailer in the world!

    Reply