5 Best WooCommerce Affiliate Plugins (2020) – Create Your Own Program
Looking to create an affiliate program for your WooCommerce store? In this post, we’ll share the best WooCommerce affiliate plugins to help you do just that.
Launching your own affiliate program is a great way to grow your store. You can have an army of loyal promoters out there driving traffic to your store – and it’s also a nice backdoor to get some inbound links going for SEO, too!
With a WordPress affiliate plugin, you’ll be able to set this up quite easily. The plugin will automatically handle tracking visitors and assigning commissions. Plus, your affiliates will be able to view everything from their own frontend dashboards. Depending on the plugin, you might even get some tools that help you easily pay out commissions when needed.
Keep reading for our picks for the best WooCommerce affiliate plugins in 2020 and beyond…
Five Best WooCommerce Affiliate Plugins
Here are the five plugins that we’ll be looking at, in no particular order…
- Ultimate Affiliate Pro
- YITH WooCommerce Affiliates
- ShareASale (a kind of bonus)
If you’re in a rush, the first two are the best choices for most stores!
AffiliateWP is probably the best-known WordPress affiliate plugin. It makes a great option for your WooCommerce store for two big reasons:
- It has an excellent feature list that can most likely do everything you need it to.
- It comes from a reputable and well-established developer, which means that it should continue to receive maintenance/improvements in the future. The company behind AffiliateWP is the same company behind Easy Digital Downloads, Restrict Content Pro, and some other popular plugins.
Whether you’re using WooCommerce or not, AffiliateWP comes with:
- Reliable referral tracking, even if you’re using caching
- A front-end dashboard for all of your affiliates
- Real-time reporting for both you and your affiliates
- An option to create dedicated coupon codes and connect them to affiliate accounts
- Customizable commissions. For example, you can use flat-rate, percentage, apply different rates to different products or affiliates, etc.
- Custom cookie expiration times
- Customizable affiliate URLs
When it comes time to make payouts, AffiliateWP includes an easy-to-use payouts service that lets you quickly pay affiliates to their bank accounts or debit cards in more than 30 countries.
As you’d expect since it’s on this list, AffiliateWP also has a dedicated WooCommerce integration. It even automatically integrates with some WooCommerce features. For example, if you refund an order in WooCommerce, AffiliateWP will automatically reject that commission.
All in all, if you’re looking for the overall best WooCommerce affiliate plugin, this is a great one to start with.
Price: AffiliateWP starts at $99 for the Personal license. However, most stores will probably want to go with the $249 Professional license because it gives you more flexibility with affiliate commissions and helps you streamline payouts. It’s worth checking if you can squeak by with the Personal license, though.
Ultimate Affiliate Pro is the most popular WooCommerce affiliate plugin at CodeCanyon, where it’s racked up almost 10,000 sales while maintaining a stellar 4.65-star rating on over 220 reviews.
Like AffiliateWP, it’s not limited to WooCommerce, but it does include a built-in integration for WooCommerce stores.
It lets you choose from a variety of different structures, like giving commissions for:
You can set different rates for different affiliates or products. You can even offer multi-tier commissions to let people earn from referring other affiliates, give performance bonuses when affiliates reach certain metrics, and more.
To help you quickly pay out commissions, Ultimate Affiliate Pro has built-in integrations for both PayPal and Stripe.
Other notable features include:
- Custom coupons that are linked to affiliates
- Front-end affiliate dashboard with reports
- Email marketing service integrations
Price: $59 with standard Envato licensing (lifetime updates and six months of support)
Unlike the previous two plugins, YITH WooCommerce Affiliates is exclusively for WooCommerce stores. It also comes in both a free and premium version, which is nice if you’re on a budget. However, most stores will probably want to go with the premium version for access to all of the features.
With the free version, you can:
- Use a shortcode to allow affiliate registration or turn regular WordPress users into affiliates
- Automatically match affiliate commissions with WooCommerce order statuses and cancel commissions for refunded orders
- Create a storewide commission rate. For example, “20% of sales”
- Offer a front-end affiliate dashboard
With the premium version, you’ll get more control over commissions and how they work. For example, you can set different commission rates for different products or affiliates. You can also create dedicated coupons and link them to commissions.
You’ll also get a lot more features around payouts. For example, affiliates can request to withdraw commissions and you can also set up automatic affiliate payouts on certain days or when certain thresholds have been reached.
For those reasons, you’ll almost certainly want to go with the premium version for anything more than a very basic affiliate program for a small store.
Price: Limited free version at WordPress.org. Pro version starts at €99.99 for use on a single site.
It’s also not technically an affiliate marketing tool – it’s more focused on referral marketing. Referral marketing shares a lot of similarities with affiliate marketing, but it’s a little more focused on encouraging regular customers to earn a commission or other reward for sharing your products. Learn the difference.
You can offer different rewards like cash commissions, discounts on products, gifts, and more. You’ll also be able to encourage action with forms/popups at different parts of your store.
While I think this referral marketing is a unique approach (especially for niches that could do well on social media), the one downside of ReferralCandy is pricing. Because it’s a SaaS tool, you’ll need to pay an ongoing monthly fee for as long as you want to use ReferralCandy, which is different from the one-time purchase that you’ll find with WordPress plugins. ReferralCandy also charges a commission rate for your referrals.
Price: ReferralCandy charges you a flat $49 per month fee plus a tiered commission based on your referral sales. You can use a calculator on the pricing page to see more details about how much you’ll pay in commission.
5. Bonus: ShareASale
ShareASale is not a WooCommerce affiliate plugin – it’s a standalone affiliate network. However, if you’re willing to go the network route, you can easily integrate it with WooCommerce thanks to an official ShareASale WooCommerce Tracker plugin.
It might be worth looking at if you’re willing to go the network route, but I won’t go into too much detail here because it’s not really a plugin – it just sets up the tracking for you.
Many other affiliate networks also offer dedicated WooCommerce integration options, so you can explore your options here. I only singled out ShareASale because it’s the network that I have the most experience with.
However, because affiliate networks are commission-based, you’ll typically pay a lot more than you would to create your own affiliate program. However, the upside is that you get access to a huge pool of potential advertisers.
Price: You’ll pay a one-time $550 fee to join the ShareASale network as a merchant. Then, you’ll pay 20% of the commissions you dole out, with a minimum of $35 per month. For example, if a commission to an affiliate is $5, you’ll also pay $1 (20% of that commission) to ShareASale for a total of $6.
Which Is the Best WooCommerce Affiliate Plugin?
All of these plugins have something to offer. However, if you’re still not sure where to get started, here are some suggestions.
First off, if you want the best overall plugin, I think that starting with AffiliateWP is a great decision. It has all of the features that you need and it comes from an established developer, which means it should be around for the long haul.
If the $99 (or, more likely, $249) for AffiliateWP is out of your budget, then Ultimate Affiliate Pro from CodeCanyon makes a good budget option. At just $59 with lifetime updates, it’s tough to argue with this one from a value perspective.
Finally, if you’re more interested in referral marketing than affiliate marketing, ReferralCandy is an interesting option to check out. Though it’s a little pricey compared to these plugins, it has a unique feature set that could work very well for some stores.
Do you have any questions about choosing the best WooCommerce affiliate plugin for your store? Let us know in the comments!