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How to configure and use your Affiliate module?

The affiliate module included in your store allows you to provide special users ("Partners") with the ability to earn commissions by directing visitors to your site from banners and/or links that they place on their websites. You pay them a percentage or a flat rate when a sale is made. All sales and commissions can be carefully monitored using the affiliate admin panel.

How is this module working?

- First you would need to create your affiliate plan(s)

- Then you need to create some text links and/or graphic banners that will be used by your Partners, these will remain saved on your store database.

- Any visitor to your site can go to your affiliate page (/partner) and register for Free to become a partner of your store.

- Once you receive their application, you review it and if you decide to approve the application, you will then assign one of your affiliate plan to that "partner".

- Once approved, 'Partners' can LOG-into their account and access the banner/link section. There they can grab either a text link or banner link which basically are portion of HTML code that contain a URL to connect back to your store BUT also and most importantly this HTML code contains a unique code ID that is 'their' Partner ID.

- Then, using this html code they install these links on their site

- If one of their site visitors click on any of these links to visit and make a purchase in your store, their commission account will be credited with either a flat or percentage of the order depending on how you configured the plan that they have been assigned to.

Finally, either regularly of when their account reaches some threshold, you will issue a payment for your partner. Usually after the return period for products sold is over.

Enable the affiliate module

To enable your affiliate module, you should first select the ‘modules’ option from the ‘OTHER SETTINGS‘ menu section:
then select the Affiliate module checkbox and click the [save] button at the end of the page.

Create an affiliate plan

In order to create an affiliate plan, first select the ‘Affiliate plans’ option from the ‘AFFILIATES’ menu section.
The Affiliate plan creation interface will display :
Add a new plan, for example ‘Aff_Plan_01’ and click the [Add] button. The plan will be added to the list:
Click on the [Modify selected] button to update and configure the affiliate plan:
On this interface you need to input your plan setting. You can chose to allow commission for only some products, or by category or by setting a basic commission rate for all products. Of course you can use a combination of all these different options. Make sure to click the [Update] button in each of the corresponding section where you make changes.

Create links and banners

To create links and banners, you should first select the ‘Banners’ link from the ‘AFFILIATES’ menu section. The following list of banner link option will display:
Chose the type of banner that you want to add, for example ‘Graphic banner’, the following interface will display:
Make sure to provide accurate sizes (width, height) otherwise the banner may look awkward. Please note that the ‘Redirect URL ’ field is optional. This URL is the URL of the landing page for that banner. If you leave that field empty then the landing page will be the home page of your site.

Assign a plan to a partner

Once a partner has registered, an email notification will be sent to you and the partner. You can then go into your users list to find his profile, review it and assign him an affiliate plan if you decide to approve the profile.
Once approved the partner can find banners code in his account that will include his ID and use them on his site to generate affiliate traffic to your site. If the partner does not have any site he can provide his ID to site visitors. His ID can be input at checkout time and the affiliate benefit of the sale will be credited in similar way as if the  visitor came from his site.

Management and Monitoring

Once you have created your affiliate plans and approved some partner registration it is time to manage and monitor your affiliate program.

Several options and links are available from the ‘AFFILIATES’ menu section:
# Partner commissions : This section can be used to assign an affiliate plan to a definite partner or group of partners. You can also find out what affiliate plans are assigned to what partners.

# Partner orders : This section may be used to search for orders placed by customers referred to the store site by partners.

# Partner accounts : This section provides information about partner accounts. You can find out the amount paid to a partner using the following search criteria:
- commission,
- the amount approved for payment but not paid,
- the unapproved orders commission amount and
- the limit according to the affiliate plan assigned to a particular partner.

# Payment info uploading : You can use this function to upload information about the payment of commissions to partners. The data to be uploaded should formatted using a CSV file.
- The first column in your CSV file should contain orderid - a unique order identifier.
- The second column should contain a partner commission payment flag for this order, the value of which can be either "Y" or "N" ("Y" signifies that the partner commission was paid for this order, "N" - not paid).

For Example:

# Multi tier affiliates : This section allows you to set commissions for the partners who promoted the partnership program of your store and whose links were used by a certain number of visitors to register as your new partners. Commission rates for this kind of partners are calculated based on the commissions of the affiliate partners attracted by them. You can define up to four level of multi-tier affiliates commission.

# Affiliate statistics : This function is used to display banner system efficiency statistics. The statistics include clicks, banner exposures and clicks to exposures ratio.

# Advertising campaigns : Your affiliate module allows you to track third-party online advertising campaigns in which your store may participate. This section provides an interface that you can use to create, modify and track affiliate advertising campaigns.


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