Even newbies in affiliate marketing know that customer satisfaction is crucial in the success of this business (or any other online or offline business).
It’s for this reason that business owners always strive to provide the best kind of customer service and support.
Now you can’t expect your customers to be satisfied with your business if they’re angry, frustrated, stress out or problematic with your products or customer service.
So you don’t earn the ire of your affiliate customers, make sure that you don’t resort to any of the tactics mentioned below. It’s also a must to optimize your website and create a positive experience for all your customers.
# 1 – Bait and Switch Tactic
One of the most annoying things that customers encounter online is the bait and switch.
In this tactic, a bait is used to lure a customer in. Once the customer is hooked into the bait, the seller or marketer switches it with another option.
For example, to attract your target audience to read a blog post, you will use a clickbait headline that entices them to click and read your post but when they get to it, they see that the article is completely irrelevant to the title.
Another example is when you offer a popular product for a 50 percent discount. But when the customer is about to buy the product, he/she finds out the popular product has been replaced with another one.
This technique can be used for content, products, special offers and so on.
Understandably, it will frustrate and anger your customers primarily because you are misleading them with false information. No one likes getting lied to.
Making use of this technique is the fastest way to lose the trust of your customers.
Of course, you don’t want this to happen. You are perfectly aware that trust is an important factor in the success of any affiliate marketer.
Bait and switch may work in giving you one time sales but it will not set you up for long term success. Instead, it will doom your affiliate marketing business to failure.
# 2 – Hard Selling Methods
In the past, a good salesman was described as the one who would do everything it takes to get a product sold, who would never take no for an answer, and who wouldn’t stop until he/she convinces the customer to make the purchase.
But take note that nowadays, hard selling no longer works for businesses including affiliate marketing.
For one, online consumers prefer to buy products from people they know. If they don’t know who you are and you bombard them with products that you want them to buy from you, they will simply ignore you.
Also, customers never like it when they are being forced to do something they don’t want to do. Sometimes, even if they are in need of the product that you are selling, if they feel pressured, they won’t buy it.
Not only does hard selling drive customers away, this technique also causes them so much stress and anxiety that more often than not, they share negative feedback about your business to people they know.
You don’t want to give the impression that you are an aggressive salesman. Instead, you want to earn the trust and loyalty of your customers and show them that you are more concerned in helping them than with making money.
# 3 – Spamming
If you’re an affiliate branded as a spammer, people are going to avoid you like a plague.
Those you’ve spammed will not only be annoyed but will lose their trust in your business.
Sometimes, even if you do not have any intention of spamming your audience, just the mere mention of the word “spam” already denotes negative impression in their minds.
It has been shown in studies that landing pages that have this phrase “We will not spam you” have a much lower conversion rate and significantly higher bounce rate than websites that do not include this phrase.
Surprisingly, it is your intention to assure your audience that you will not send them any spam messages but still, it will negatively impact your online business.
It’s imperative to stay away from spamming and anything related to it.
When crafting your email messages for your email marketing campaign or your content for social media sites, see to it that you provide excellent quality posts that your target audience will find helpful and valuable.
Never bombard them with ads.
Posting too frequently should also be avoided. Post or send messages only once or twice a week. Anything more than this can already be flagged down as spamming.
# 4 – Biased Product Reviews
When you’re working as an affiliate, one of the most common types of content that you will use to promote your affiliate products is the product review.
As the term implies, a product review is an extensive review of a specific product, highlighting its features, benefits, drawbacks, and steps for using.
Affiliates make use of this type of content to feature the product that they are affiliated with, hoping that the information presented about the product will convince the audience to purchase it using the affiliate’s links.
This is the most common way an affiliate generates his/her earnings.
It’s usually an effective method, but only if an affiliate writes the review with no bias whatsoever.
Yes, this can be a challenge since you’d probably want to convince your customers to buy the product so you can earn your commission.
But if you intentionally leave out details such as the product’s drawbacks, side effects or any other negative aspect just so you can get the customer to buy the product, your customers are bound to find out.
When they do, they will immediately lose their trust in you. They’ll see that you are not after helping them and enlightening them about the product, they will see that you’re just after making money.
# 5 – Slow Loading Website
Nothing infuriates an online user like a slow loading website.
By slow, we mean a loading time of more than five seconds.
If you think about it, five seconds is not that long. But due to the extremely short attention span of online users and the increased desire for instant gratification, many would immediately lose their interest and leave the website if it does not load instantly.
A slow loading website will not anger your affiliate customers as much bait and switch or spamming. It may also not be enough reason for customers to spread negative reviews about your business. But this does not mean that you should just overlook this matter.
Every second delay in the loading of your site makes you lose three or four potential customers.
You might not realize this but the slow performance of your affiliate site could be losing you a lot of earnings.
Needless to say, it’s important to speed up the website’s loading time.
# 6 – Poor Website Navigation
Poor website navigation is just as bad as a slow loading website.
Online users like things organized and efficient.
When they enter your site and they find it difficult to figure out or they cannot find what they are looking for, there’s a big chance that they will lose interest and hit the exit door right away.
It’s a must to ensure proper navigation system.
Organize your menu accordingly. Have a search box in your website so that users can enter their query and immediately find what they need.
# 7 – Lack of Transparency
As mentioned earlier, customers never like being lied to.
But that’s not all. They also don’t like being misled into thinking something that is not true, even if it’s not blatant lying.
For example, if you are an affiliate for fitness programs, and you run a weight loss blog. You do not mention in the blog that you are an affiliate. But you don’t say that you are not either. You just go on in reviewing the program, featuring its benefits to get your audience to buy your product.
You did not lie because there was no part in your content that denied that you are an affiliate. But the fact that you did not disclose it is something that will cause your customers to lose their trust in you.
Make sure that you practice transparency in all aspects of your affiliate marketing business, starting from the affiliate disclosure.
Let your audience know that you are an affiliate and that when visitors buy products using your affiliate links, you will earn a commission at no extra cost to them.
Other than this, you should also be transparent with everything else about your business so as to gain and not lose your customers’ confidence in you.
# 8 – Insufficient Product Details
This is particularly true for product reviews, tutorials, demonstrations and comparison posts.
If you will write content for your site about any topic including your products, you need to include all the information necessary, from the major features to the smallest details. All these have an effect on the customers’ buying decisions.
If there’s any detail missing and it turns out a pertinent detail that the customer is looking for, this will surely cause frustration and stress.
# 9 – Unrealistic Claims Leading to Unrealistic Expectations
This is another cause for customer dissatisfaction–unrealistic claims.
What’s wrong with unrealistic claims?
It’s blatant dishonesty, a good reason for customers to lose their trust in you.
When you make claims about your products that are too good to be true, there’s a possibility that you’ll get them to buy the product, but once they find out that they’ve been lied to, they will not only get mad, it’s also highly likely that they will complain about you online.
This can ruin the online reputation you’ve worked so hard for.
If there is anything about the product that you are not sure about such as the claims that are being made by the merchant or the product owner himself, double check and verify.
Never disseminate any information that you are not 100 percent sure about.
# 10 – Slow Response to Messages
Another common cause of customer dissatisfaction is inefficient communication.
If you notice, on your business’ Facebook page, there’s a part there that indicates your response time.
The quicker the response time is, the higher your rating is.
And this is because customers always appreciate prompt and efficient communication. They like it when you respond instantly to messages and hate it when it takes forever for them to get answer to their questions.
This is why, expert always advise affiliates especially the newbies to respond immediately to all questions and concerns. If you find it difficult to manage all the messages, it would be a good idea to delegate this task to a PR person in your team. But if you can do it yourself, it’d be better as this would save you money, and at the same time, show your customers that you are a hands on business owner.
It’d also be a smart move to install a live chat box on your blog or site so that you can respond instantly to messages.
# 11 – Delay or Inaction for Issues and Complaints
If there is any problem or issue, customers also expect that you will attend to these right away.
Delaying or procrastinating about these will surely anger your customers. In fact, this is more annoying than slow response to messages. Usually, complaints are urgent and the customers are expecting immediate attention.
All these things will surely anger your affiliate customers so it’s best to steer clear of these methods and mistakes as much as possible.