The outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic has challenged the business world in many ways. It has sent shock waves down the organizations and consumer behavior on a massive scale.
With all kinds of organizations trying to brace the impact that coronavirus will have on their business, everyone is looking for the escape route and trying to ensure their business continuity, including the affiliate industry.
Two things are happening in the affiliate marketing industry. Firstly, most marketers are denying the claims of the entire industry being affected and secondly, companies are increasing their spending in a wild hope for the revenue to bounce back because of eCommerce being a viable point of sale.
Now that people are avoiding crowds and trying not to leave their houses for good, eCommerce is on its way to becoming the new normal.
Here is how the Coronavirus has impacted the affiliate market:
- The confusion around the future of the eCommerce industry also highly puts the affiliate industry in question. As far as the theory of people not physically going out and buying products is in place, online sales should skyrocket. But, at the same time, the availability of skeletal crew due to the fear of exposure to the virus makes it a bottleneck in the supply chain.
- The limitation of income triggered as a result of people losing their jobs also puts the spending capacity of the customers in question.
- Delivery services are highly affected because of the decline in the number of delivery personnel available to do the job. Everyone is trying their best to avoid human contact.
- With work from home and remote learning becoming the new normal, people are willing to invest in affiliate products such as software, online services, courses, etc., more than ever now. Well, this is good news for the affiliate industry.
- Ad performance has become a very decisive factor, more than ever. With the drop in organic traffic, various affiliate offers will see a decline/rise in their operation.
For example, companies specializing in organic and handmade e-commerce beauty products are thriving. Their affiliate programs are witnessing huge changes and their signup rates are exploding, all thanks to the most coveted hand sanitizers.
Now that we have an over-the-surface understanding of what is happening in the affiliate marketing industry as a result of the COVID-19, let’s talk about some tips that will help affiliate marketers capitalize on affiliate marketing in the current Coronavirus situation.
Tips for affiliate marketers to deal with the COVID-19 crisis:
1. Learn about the shifts in eCommerce due to the outbreak
As we have talked about the shifts in the affiliate market above, everyone operating in this market needs to be aware of the changes happening around and the development of new trends and patterns.
Now is the time for pushing your product’s blog promotion and social media marketing to the extreme because you want people to listen. So, as an affiliate marketer, you must stay tuned and be on a lookout for news updates around your vertical from different sources.
2. Figure out what sells better
Whatever used to sell better pre-COVID-19 might not cut the deal now. There is an extreme change in the buying trends and behavior now and hence, affiliate marketers need to do some research and find out what is going to sell the most now.
Right now, people are staying indoors and they are excessively consuming digital content, trying to learn a new skill, and/or trying to stay close with their loved ones; digital courses, online memberships, dating deals, fitness content sound like the point of grace for affiliate marketers right now.
For other examples, yoga mats and home gym equipment are selling like crazy. Here is more:
- Online education courses
- Skill development courses
- Hobby/DIY courses
- Make money from home products/services
- Freelance services
- Dating and adult products/services
- Health online
- Work from home supplies such as printers
- Communication software
- Gaming and streaming services
However, based on your geographical region of affiliate sales, this might differ. So, make some solid research and figure out what works best for you.
3. Take the supply chain into consideration
If you are panicking at the moment because your affiliate market has come crashing down or is not performing at all, think of the supply chains. It is important to understand that the crumple has been brought by the breakdown of the supply chains.
Prolonged shipping times are discouraging people from buying things online, affecting the overall affiliate sales. Non-essential goods are not guaranteed to get delivered on time and that is a major bummer for the customers wanting to receive their parcels at the earliest.
Not everyone can work from home and this has affected production and distribution. Partial or complete shutdowns of businesses have also contributed to things not working the usual way.
It is best to exercise some patience and figure out alternative revenue streams for survival at the moment.
4. Online education products/services are a key focus area
As mentioned above, affiliate marketers can find solace in selling online educational products and services. eLearning is booming at the moment and everyone is looking to learn something new and be productive in the quarantine lockdown.
School courses and making money from home courses are quite trending and can fetch good affiliate commission for affiliate marketers.
Hence, this becomes a keen focus area. It is also a great time to nurture and brush your own affiliate marketing skills as well and become an expert at what you do.
5. Software for communication is huge in pandemic times
People are locked inside their houses and they are forced not to leave; as tragic as this might be, it is a great opportunity for selling communication software as an affiliate product.
Online learning classes have become a big hit and everybody is trying to sell their skills in the format of online classes. Affiliate partnerships with online class providers is a great move if you can find one.
E-learning products also provide marketers a chance to negotiate on the commission if sales are well delivered.
6. Reduced commissions should be dealt with
People are not willing to spend more at the moment, owing to the uncertainty in the economy. This applies to businesses as well as they struggle to ensure business continuity.
For affiliate marketers, this means reduced affiliate commissions. Businesses from around the globe are also suspending their affiliate program and reducing the referral fees for their products.
This requires affiliate marketers to stay patient and look for alternative programs to get their cut for commission.
7. Re-assess your affiliate marketing strategy
Amidst all the crises, it is important to remember that this is not going to be the case forever. Once we recover from the pandemic, there will be potential for new opportunities to make the money we lost.
However, to survive, it is equally important to re-assess one’s existing affiliate strategy and adapt to the change of the trends.
8. Employ your affiliate business contacts
We bet you developed many affiliate contacts over time in your duration as an affiliate marketer. And now is the time to communicate with them to further establish business contacts and cooperation.
It is the time to engage with new partners, discuss affiliate trends, and figure out a strategy that can work and help you survive the pandemic’s economic impact.
A word of hope: Affiliate marketing business
The outbreak of the pandemic COVID-19 is a very tragic occurrence for the entire world. The unprecedented impact will definitely change the way we go on with our lives and do our businesses.
With the global business community under immense pressure, including the affiliate world, it is flexibility and adaptability that are going to help us sail our boats out of this storm.
It is important to prioritize our health and families right now while also trying to stay financially afloat.
With much patience and help from what we have discussed above, we sincerely hope that we will together navigate the impact and emerge safely at the other side once the pandemic bids us the deserved farewell.
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Kiera Hayes is a passionate Blogger and Marketer. She enjoys reading and writing articles whenever she gets time from her work.