Merchants Pave Their Own Way

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I came across an interesting thread today at the ABW forum from a merchant who had decided to strike out on his own (away from networks) and manage their own affiliate offering.

Under the title "Leaving the networks and Paving Our Own Way”:

“After spending some time as merchant in a few of the popular affiliate program networks, we have decided to go out on our own and offer a truly unique affiliate program. The concept is simple, provide our affiliates with the tools they need (creatives, text ads, tracking links, dynamic co-branded pages) to bring new customers our way, and in return we deliver a $25 to $100 commission for each sale.”

While there’s a lot of value in letting affiliate networks do the recruiting legwork and develop the infrastructure necessary for tracking and managing affiliates, it is possible (in my opinion – we’ve done this internally ourselves) to develop an affiliate program and promote it to those within your industry. So here’s the question, if you’re a merchant, what’s stopping you from “paving your own way”? If you’re an affiliate network, how do you convince merchants to stick with it?

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