Rethink Commerce Blog

Quick Tip to Increase your Affiliate Sales: Look at your Shopping Cart

Posted on April 21st, 2010 by

Nowadays everyone is talking about increasing your conversion rate as the main driver for generating more revenue online. Well, it is, actually :) and it’s up to all entities in the buying process – vendor, resellers, affiliates – to optimize this in order to generate more sales.

From the data we have, the customized shopping carts perform 2.7% better (in absolute value) than the others.This means that if you optimize your order interface, you may generate an additional sale for each 37 sales you’re already generating.

As a member of the Avangate Affiliate Network, you have advanced tools to improve this very important KPI. One of the unique possibilities we offer in our affiliate network is the affiliate order interface customization.

Did you ever wonder how the users act during the buying process? What happens after your visitors are redirected to the shopping cart / Avangate secure servers?

Why customize your shopping cart?

If you’re using buy links directly to the shopping cart on your affiliate website, you should consider customizing your order interface template, at least for the following reasons:

  • Increased trust – when shoppers are redirected to our payment interface, the vendor default template will be used. Some of the visitors may consider this untruthful and, thus, abandon the shopping process.
  • Control the shopping process – you know best (or at least you should have an idea of) what your audience’s needs and website flow are. So, you can serve them the right things in the shopping cart and avoid issues like an inappropriate shopping cart template defined by the software vendor or any other changes in various stages of the shopping cart that might affect your conversion rate.
  • Market the products better – many say that the software vendor is in the best position to market its products. However, there are many examples that prove the opposite – affiliates having more success in selling products than the vendors, given the fact that, for example, they may address specific niches, local audiences and so on.
  • Optimize the shopping cart – give your customers contextual links to your website, recommend them other things or just focus on the buying process – whatever your optimization strategy is, you can put it into practice.

Don’t forget – a very important part of the customization part is continuous testing – you shouldn’t look at this as a one-time operation after which you’re done, waiting for your conversion numbers to skyrocket.

How others do it

Along with some vendor shopping cart examples, here are a couple of customized affiliate order interfaces from our network that have very good conversion rates:

Here’s what they have to say about this:

[…] Of particular note is the optimization that we can now do that we weren’t able to with other companies. On their system, we’ve been able to increase revenue at our antivirus review site by over 20% and conversions over 30%, which are good numbers by anyone’s measure. […] – K. Smith, Co-Editor

As you can see, all of them have something in common – they preserve the layout of the original website, with contextual information added for the convenience of the buyer.

So, my advice is to go ahead and start customizing your affiliate shopping cart. The worst thing that can happen is to increase your commissions! :)

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Cristi Miculi

Senior Manager, Affiliate Services

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Comments (8)

  • Silviu Galut says: May 29th, 2010 at 6:29 pm

    Salut Cristi,

    eu incerc de ceva timp sa invat cum sa castig bani prin cheltuirea timpului pe internet (doresc sa schimb “timp contra bani”), dar nu am gasit o solutie pana in acest moment. Sper ca tu sa ma indrumi pe calea cea buna, avand in vedere faptul ca esti unde esti.

    Cu stima,

    Silviu Galut

  • Tim says: September 2nd, 2010 at 10:51 pm

    Of all the posts and articles I read on a given day. This is one ofe the top.
    Your suggestions on shopping carts are right on.Especially about building trust. That is what is all about in this buisness
    Thanks Tim

  • Improve Your Online Shopping Cart Conversions « Web Designs Tricks & Tips says: October 28th, 2010 at 3:34 pm

    […] Quick Tip to Increase your Affiliate Sales: Look at your Shopping Cart […]

  • Subrato says: February 12th, 2011 at 6:14 pm


    Ok, I am new to Affiliate marketing.
    I don’t have a website and can’t afford one in near future.

    Is there a way, to use promote a product of my choice through Web 2.0 properties, if yes which one would be the best. You think Blogger is a good idea, I am not sure, if they even allow these activities.

    And Yes, I am not expecting 100K/week in sales. Can you give me some realistic number to expect in a month ? As I said, I am a newbie

    Need help.


  • Cristi Miculi says: March 11th, 2011 at 6:06 pm


    If you don’t have a website to promote products, I believe that social media (Facebook especially) could help you. You can, for example, create a page on Facebook with reviews / recommendations for various software products and use, of course, the special Avangate affiliate links.

    Also – you can create a blog on WordPress / Blogger and promote the products there, like on a website. But I really think that social media has a greater impact and you have better chances in generating sales through this method.

    I couldn’t give you a close estimate of how much you should make in a month. From my experience, the starting phase for affiliates (especially beginners) can take from a few weeks to a few years. But I believe that it should be safe to target having at least one sale in the first 3 months from starting your affiliate project (after you have your website / blog / social media page ready and complete).

  • Hendrik says: September 28th, 2011 at 12:24 pm


    I am on your affiliate program as well and have not heard about this way before. I have tried to do a similar thing using another plugin and an iframe. This, however, seems to be more stable.

    I will definitely check it out.

    Thanks for the info :)

    Greetings from Germany


  • Anuj@improve google pagerank says: January 11th, 2012 at 7:03 am

    Excellent tips there mate. In my experience, what I really advice to most is to be as honest as you can be about the product you are promoting, and give a lengthy and exceptional content about it, and let the marketing/SEO side empower its chances of getting sales.

    Email marketing is also one of the best ways to increase affiliate sales, but it takes time to build up your list. It’s important that you keep your focus to really achieve your goals in this line of industry.

  • Cristi Miculi says: March 19th, 2012 at 6:28 pm

    @Anuj – thank you for your comment. Email marketing is indeed a strong “weapon” in growing sales, especially if you find an affiliate with experience in this and a big database of customers :)