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Avantlink Leads the Way in Affiliate Marketing Tools - The Review

The Avantlink affiliate network was founded in 2006, and has seen significant growth, and success since.

Founded by Scott Kalbach, on the principals of innovation, service and quality, he’s delivered that and much more, by focusing on affiliate marketing tools that help pave the way to success.

That’s one of the major drivers in the success of their network. The vast array of affiliate tools they have available for their affiliates.

However, to become an affiliate on the network, you need to bring your existing professionalism to the table. It’s not a network for anyone, and you will need your own website.

Every application will be manually approved for acceptance into the platform. Once you’re accepted, you’ll then have to apply to each merchant individually for approval to partner with their brand.

Avantlink is a “cost per sale” affiliate network, meaning you’ll only be paid a commission a per sale basis. You don’t have lead generation or anything else that can make your job easier. It’s strictly an e-commerce affiliate network, where website owners, and bloggers can join the network, hook up with merchants in exchange for a commission of the sales generated.

The average commission on Avantlink is around the 10% mark, which is pretty standard for selling tangible items as an affiliate. Although, there are programs, and other incentives that can see that commission rate increased.  

 

Getting through the application

When you first apply to the network, one of the things you have to do first is verify your application. While most networks, or any other program for that matter, usually do this with an email confirmation link, it’s not that straight forward with Avantlink.

What they request you do, prior to having your application reviewed is to insert JavaScript on your home page, for verification purposes.

Unfortunately, that didn’t happen for us, and the alternative verification method had to be used. That was to download an HTML file supplied, and upload that to the root folder of the website through FTP. So if you’re uncomfortable with coding, you might find that this network isn’t the simplest to get going with.

The owners are technical and that’s probably a primary driver to their success. The reason being the vast amount of affiliate tools they have available. They’re pretty much leading the way in the affiliate technology, for tracking, analytical, and marketing purposes. For those who aren’t great with technology, you could find yourself lost in the arrange of tools they have available.

Looking back at the initial application process, the first indicator to their technology was the application. Something that not everyone is going to be familiar with the process, nor comfortable with coding, FTP, and JavaScript implementation.

Your first experience with the coding is right at your review process.

It’s worth noting that you should read over their application acceptance criteria, where they clearly state what they do and don’t want to see in their applications.

 

The developers dream

This is more in line with Avantlink. Rather than be suited to every affiliate marketer, they’re more of a niche affiliate network, focusing on affiliates with the skills to develop their own application software, using the Avantlink API.

Developers who are able to use the API and create tools for other affiliates to use, can earn more as the apps are downloaded from the Avantlink app marketplace, earning the developer a commission on each sale their app helps generate.

Pretty smart in the part of Avantlink as it gets more apps developed for their marketplace, without the (sometimes huge) capital that’s often required.

 

Who else is Avantlink suited to?

Apart from developers, any affiliate involved in selling tangible items, or have a content rich website suitable for a store to be added into the mix would be ideal for the Avantlink affiliate network.

They do lead the way in the affiliate tools they have available, but not everyone is going to be knowledgeable to utilise each of their tools, as some of them can be perplex. That said, they do offer support both through their own network, and they are active on social media, with a supportive community of affiliates as well. So you’re not going to be stuck for too long if you do run into some technical difficulties with some of their affiliate tools.

The focus Avantlink appears to take for their network is bring innovative solutions to the affiliate marketing industry, helping to take care of the advertising side of things, while affiliates on the network focus on their marketing campaigns, publishing content, building a community, and marketing the inventory of products they have available on their site.

That’s where Avantlink specialise. Providing the tools to make affiliate marketing that bit easier, and less time consuming, freeing up more time for affiliates to get involved in their marketing campaigns, generating traffic, and building a following.

 

Payment methods and details

  • Minimum payment threshold - $25

  • Payout cycle - Monthly

  • Method of payment - Direct deposit, cheque and PayPal, although the options will vary by location.

 

The affiliate toolbox available to Avantlink affiliates

  1. Merchant ads

The merchant ads area in Avantlink is where you get your advertising creatives. Whatever affiliate program you’re an approved affiliate for, you can filter each of them in the merchant ads section. This allows you to pull up all the creatives for individual campaigns at a glance, without having to sift through a variety of merchants to find the one you’re looking to promote.

It keeps things more organised, as eventually, the longer you’re with Avantlink, the more merchants you’re going to be approved for. It gives you a broader earnings potential, as you will have a variety of merchants available.

The merchant ads centre gives you five options for your creatives.

  1. Flash

  2. HTML only

  3. Image

  4. Text

  5. Video

You also have a filterable option where you can further narrow your search to find only the merchant ads where there are coupon deals available, or not.

One of the neat things in here is the tracking tools. Each of the merchant ad generators, for any of the five types can be arranged into your own groups. It can help you track which ads are more beneficial for your website, allowing you to refine your advertising to generate the best returns.

You don’t have to save these ads to your computer, the way some other networks would have you do. All you do here is select the type of ad you’re looking for, generate the code for it, and allocate it to whatever ad group you set up.

The codes will be generated for you to copy and paste onto your own site. The options you have for the codes are:

  • Standard HTML links

  • Dynamic/JavaScript

  • URL only – (naked links)

All of which are generated, ready to copy and paste to your site, and you’ll be ready to start promoting.

The video ads are a pretty neat feature, but they aren’t widely popular with the merchants. For those who do have them, they are a neat feature. Instead of searching for a particular merchant, you’re best to search all merchants you’re approved for to find video ads, and if they are available, they’ll be a neat addition to your website content.

Video advertorials are a great way to make your content more interactive, engaging with your audience more, and increasing your click through rates, so if you are approved for a merchant with video ads available – be sure to capitalise on them.

For coupon codes, it’s best to use JavaScript integration, as these will update automatically on your website.

 

  1. Paid Placement

Paid placement is a super cool feature on Avantlink. It gives you a double fold method of earning. With this feature, you’re able to offer a paid placement on a section of your site. In essence, you’re selling advertising space in a prime location of your site.

The best part – You get paid the rate of pay per day for the advertisement. The advert is also affiliated to your account. This way, if you have a high traffic website, or a single page that’s beneficial to advertisers, you can rent this out for a fixed daily fee, as well as earn a commission on sales the advertisement generates.

 

  1. Datafeed manager

One of the most powerful features of Avantlink is more advanced. It’s the ability to use raw datafeeds from each merchant, and use that as a database for your own website. When your visitors search for a product on your domain, the raw datafeed files can pull up all the products you’re affiliated with, allowing you the ability to run a comparison-shopping website.

Ideal for adding brand categories to your shopping site. An additional datafeed service is the web service, which allows a more advanced option for customising the store using CSS codes.

The bonus here is that you can set your store up once, and it’s automatically going to update. This lets you spend your time more effectively on marketing your site, engaging with your audience, and content publishing to increase your reach online.

 

  1. Dynamic Deal Feed

The dynamic deal feeds is just using RSS feeds to pull real time data on coupons and other promotional deals. Similar to the datafeed managers, it’s a set and forget update that goes onto your website through dynamic code, generated from your affiliate dashboard, and then you can manage that from within your Avantlink account. These can be set up for each merchant you’re approved for.

The other way you can use this tool is to let your readers subscribe to the RSS of whatever merchant you’re promoting. That way your visitors can let updated on the deals, without actually going through you’re affiliate website. The deals are sent via their RSS subscription.

 

  1. Product Ad Widget

The product ad widget, referred to as PAW for short is a tool that lets you hand select the products you want to display on your website. This is an essential tool for your blog pages, and other stand-alone pages on your website. If you’re going to do a review page, or a page discussing a specific group of products, such as “cycling helmets” as an example. You can use the PAW tool to select different groups of products to display on your webpage, at whatever content section is appropriate to add the product in at.

You can also promote multiple merchants from the one product ad widget.

 

  1. Avantlink App Market

This is a handy feature for app developers. The Avantlink app market is a marketplace where developers can upload their own affiliate tools to the network for Avantlink affiliates to utilise for their affiliate promotions.

Any sales generated through an application earns a commission of that sale.

For developers there is real potential to earn significantly more revenue through Avantlink as the marketplace gives thousands of affiliates access to use that app, encoded with your affiliate links to earn a percentage of the sales accrued.

It’s a handy place to find some useful tools making it easier to advertise, but it’s more beneficial to the app developer as it’s another way to boost your revenue from the Avantlink affiliate network.

 

  1. Custom Link Builder

This is the one you’ll probably be using most as it lets you deep link into any merchant page, that you’re approved to promote. You’d simply find the page you want to link to, add the text you’re wanting hyperlinked, and then have the custom code generated for you.

The custom link URL is one of the options you have. This is the raw URL and it’s not always the prettiest.

bit.ly, tinyurl, and goo.gl have been integrated into Avantlink to create custom URL shorteners.

 

  1. Affiliate Link Encoder

This is referred to as ALE for short and it’s more beneficial for those website owners with a vast amount of content. Instead of going back through all your previous content pages, assigning affiliate links to whatever keywords are appropriate; you can instead use the Avantlink affiliate link encoder.

What this does is lets you assign an affiliate link to certain keyword phrases. So if you had a mention of running shoes, a number of times on your website, you could use the ALE tool to turn each of those keyword instances on your domain, into affiliate links.

Instead of going through each page individually, you can create the affiliate link within your Avantlink dashboard, and then edit your theme with the code generated to convert multiple keyword occurrences, site wide, with just the one snippet of code inserted into your website template.

 

  1. Avantlink WP Plugin

For affiliates using WordPress, this is the ultimate tool that lets you manage your affiliate promotions, directly from your WordPress dashboard.

You will need to obtain your authorisation key from Avantlink, but once you’ve set that up, you’re good to go.

Once you’ve installed it, you can simply run your product searches as you’re about publish and cut out the time it takes jumping between the two accounts.

 

  1. Deal of the Day

The deal of the day widget is good for those with return visitors. It updates automatically every day, giving your site visitors the best deals available for all the merchants you’re approved to promote.

With this widget, your readers are going to be guaranteed the ultimate best deals available from your approved partners. Usually a minimum of 30% discounts. It’s also customisable for banners, text, or both.

 

  1. Avantlink API

For more advanced users, the Avantlink API can be used to tap into the existing raw codes within the network inventory. This lets you create custom applications to pull whatever type of feed you’re looking to use on your website.

You can use the API request builder to configure the type of adverts you want to create. It can be used to create a sponsored page of different advertisers, by using the API request to call whatever codes you’re looking to extract and use on your website, for a custom affiliate feed.

 

  1. Product Content Widget

The product content widget is one of the most popular affiliate tools within the Avantlink network.

With this tool, you can pull the following data to display on your own website.

  • The product details can show a brief summary of the product you’re displaying

  • Any coupons or promotional codes can be included in the content

  • If reviews are available, this can also be displayed within the content

  • For any related product videos, such as video advertisements, this can be included too

  • For affiliates approved for multiple merchants with the same product inventory, you can include a comparison feature in your product content widget.

To help increase your conversions, and provide your visitors with the best shopping experience, you have the ability to set up a related products, helping to increase time on site, as well as boost your conversion rates.

 

  1. Deal Feed Syndication

This is going to be useful for affiliates approved for multiple merchants. Instead of allowing only an RSS feed for your website, you can have a solo page to display links to “subscribe to feed” for each merchant. If you’re approved for ten merchants, you can add ten different feeds for your site visitors to get the deals they prefer to receive updates on, rather than subscribe to your entire site feed.

 

  1. Contextual Ad Tool

The contextual ad tool is a handy feature for Avantlink affiliates. It lets you add a widget to the sidebar of your website, all of which are related to the content of your page. Regardless which page, or post your visitors land on, the ads will rotate to relate to the theme of the content.

 

  1. Third Party Tools

Exclusive to Avantlink is their certified third party tools, tested by the network, and proven to be reliable. Any featured third party tools are available here, helping make your affiliate marketing campaigns much simpler to manage.

 

Overall view of the Avantlink Affiliate Network: B

Given that it’s a CPS affiliate platform, with commissions averaging a decent 10% payout, with plenty of products and merchants available, across a variety of different niches, it’s certainly worth giving this one a shot.

Provided you can get your website approved. This is a network that prides itself on top tier quality. The affiliate tools they provide are top of the line, and the purpose is to help the affiliate marketer focus on the content creation needed to help shoppers enjoy their experience.

If you can enrich the e-commerce space with valuable content, in a presentable manner, then Avantlink will be inclined to partner with you. If on the other hand, you have a site that isn’t really engaging with your target audience, and solely a place for throwing affiliate links around, then this probably isn’t going to be a good match.

To be a match with the Avantlink affiliate network, it’s mainly about being value orientated. That said though, they do appear to have carved their own niche out of the affiliate network platforms, by being more attractable to app developers, who can contribute to the Avantlink app marketplace.

Their own store of sophisticated affiliate tools that help affiliates manage their campaigns more efficiently. Any network that can do that, with a sound reputation behind them, are worth putting the time in to establish a working partnership with, helping you grow your commissions, with the array of tools Avantlink available.

B
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Avantlink.com - Overview

Avantlink Leads the Way in Affiliate Marketing Tools - The Review

Member's grade =
-
Price: 10% payout on average

Overall Verdict: B

Given that it’s a CPS affiliate platform, with commissions averaging a decent 10% payout, with plenty of products and merchants available, across a variety of different niches, it’s certainly worth giving this one a shot.

Provided you can get your website approved. This is a network that prides itself on top tier quality. The affiliate tools they provide are top of the line, and the purpose is to help the affiliate marketer focus on the content creation needed to help shoppers enjoy their experience.

If you can enrich the e-commerce space with valuable content, in a presentable manner, then Avantlink will be inclined to partner with you. If on the other hand, you have a site that isn’t really engaging with your target audience, and solely a place for throwing affiliate links around, then this probably isn’t going to be a good match.

To be a match with the Avantlink affiliate network, it’s mainly about being value orientated. That said though, they do appear to have carved their own niche out of the affiliate network platforms, by being more attractable to app developers, who can contribute to the Avantlink app marketplace.

Their own store of sophisticated affiliate tools that help affiliates manage their campaigns more efficiently. Any network that can do that, with a sound reputation behind them, are worth putting the time in to establish a working partnership with, helping you grow your commissions, with the array of tools Avantlink available.