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10 Best WordPress Affiliate Plugins in 2022: How To Use Other People To Promote Your Products and Services

Last Updated on February 10th, 2022

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Affiliate marketing is huge, and increasing numbers of businesses see the merits of using other people to promote their products. But affiliate marketing is not just the reserve of big corporates, as it is surprisingly easy to establish and manage an affiliate marketing program for virtually any business. “But how?” I hear you cry. Easy – use a WordPress affiliate plugin.

In this article, I will tell you everything you need to know about affiliate plugins: what they are, how they can help your business, and I will also tell you about some of the best plugins currently available in 2022.

What Is Affiliate Marketing?

Affiliate marketing is an increasingly popular business model in which companies use other people to promote and market their products (and services) in return for a commission. In fact, the people doing the promoting are typically bloggers, social media influencers, YouTubers, and owners of other websites, although that list is by no means exhaustive.

For example, someone may have a blog about camping. On that blog, they may have an article reviewing a particular tent. If the blogger has enrolled in the affiliate marketing program of that tent supplier, they could include an affiliate link (a web link with a unique identifier that allows for the tracking of generated traffic and sales) to the tent in the review. Then, whenever someone reading the review clicks on that affiliate link, the supplier will know the visitor was ‘referred’ from that particular blogger (the ‘affiliate.’) The blogger will then be paid either for the click or if the visitor makes a purchase, depending upon the terms of the affiliate marketing program.

Affiliate marketing is useful for promoting virtually any product or service. Amazon Affiliates is probably the most popular affiliate marketing program – go to any review site and click on the product links; chances are it will take you to Amazon. In fact, you’ll be surprised by which other companies use affiliates to promote their products – Walmart and Target, would you believe?

What Is a WordPress Affiliate Plugin?

A WordPress affiliate plugin allows you to set up and manage an affiliate marketing program for your business through your website. Basically, it will enable you to:

  • Recruit and manage affiliates
  • Track the performance of affiliates (referrals, link clicks, and conversions (i.e., completed sales) for each affiliate)
  • Create sharable links and redirects for your products
  • Gather and analyze data on your affiliates and the products they are promoting
  • Automatically pay commissions earned by the affiliates

Why Do You Need an Affiliate Plugin for WordPress?

Affiliate marketing is an excellent way of casting your net far and wide and can be much more cost-effective than traditional marketing methods. Furthermore, you have complete control over the terms and conditions of your affiliate marketing program and who can join it.

How To Add an Affiliate Marketing Program to WordPress?

Before you add an affiliate marketing program to your WordPress site, you need to put some serious thought into how you want it to operate. In that respect, there are some fundamental questions you need to ask yourself, including:

  • Who can join the program? Realistically, you only want affiliates in fields relevant to your products.
  • Will commissions be paid per click or per sale?
  • How much commission is to be paid? Will it be a fixed amount, or a percentage of the sale?
  • The ‘cookie duration’ you require? Cookies are usually used to identify the referring affiliate, and you can set the cookie duration within which a sale must be completed for the affiliate to be eligible for their share of the sale. This may only be a day or two for small items, but for large ticket items, it could be several weeks or more.

Once you clearly understand how your affiliate marketing program will work, you can then start looking for a WordPress affiliate plugin to help you run it. If you plan on only having a simply structured program that won’t be promoting too many affiliate products, then a plugin to help with link management and marketing collaterals will probably suffice. However, if your program is more complex, a full-featured plugin with comprehensive affiliate management capabilities will be the better option.

Once you have identified a suitable plugin, it will be time to install and configure it. The configuration settings will vary from plugin to plugin, but will typically cover affiliate registrations and links, cookie duration, commission payouts, analytics, commission payment, etc.

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If a free version of a WordPress affiliate plugin is available – or even a free trial – I strongly suggest you make use of those before investing in the premium version. That way, you will get a good idea if your chosen plugin is the right one for you.

Finally, it is time to promote your affiliate program. That may sound counterintuitive, but if nobody knows about it, they aren’t going to enroll! However, it is easier to recruit a handful of affiliates than to try to directly capture all the sales they may bring. Think of it as a tree – you are the tree trunk, the affiliates are the branches, and the customers are the leaves at the ends of those branches.

A Word of Caution

I must mention that legislation to protect consumers from deceptive marketing practices is being strengthened globally. Therefore, in many countries, it is now a legal requirement for affiliates to disclose their financial relationship to the products and brands they are promoting. While that onus (usually) rests with the affiliate, it is always a good idea to include it in the terms and conditions of your affiliate marketing program.

My Suggested WordPress Affiliate Plugins

There are many WordPress affiliate plugins out there, which can make finding the right one for your affiliate marketing program a challenge. However, to help you, below are my picks of the best available in 2022. Please note that I have only focussed on plugins that can help you set up and run your own program – I have not mentioned any plugins for the affiliates themselves, as that will be the subject of a future article.

Solid Affiliate

Solid Affiliate wordpress affiliate plugin

Solid Affiliate is a premium WordPress affiliate plugin that will help you create and manage a solid affiliate marketing program. It is purely for WooCommerce, making it ideal for owners of eCommerce stores wanting to promote their products through affiliate marketing. Despite having plenty of advanced features, setup is simple, so getting your program off the ground should be quick and painless.

You can find a detailed review of Solid Affiliate here.

Pros

  • Flexible commission rates
  • Automatic commission tracking and payouts via PayPal, including bulk payouts
  • Coupons for affiliates to offer their own promotions
  • Detailed reports and analytics
  • Dedicated affiliate portal and frontend dashboard
  • Supports WooCommerce subscriptions (allows for recurring affiliate commissions)
  • It can be configured so that affiliates are rewarded only for new customers
  • The plugin is only available with a lifetime subscription which covers unlimited installations for a single (one-time) payment
  • The plugin is supported by a generous 60-day moneyback guarantee

Cons

  • Needs more integrations (only has MailChimp and PayPal)
  • Only suited to WooCommerce-based sites
  • Needs more bulk automation for affiliate tasks, such as adding affiliate groups
  • Cookie-less affiliate tracking is not supported, so affiliates can lose revenue if cookies are cleared in the browser

Price

  • Solid Affiliate costs $149. That is a one-off payment that includes lifetime support and updates. Furthermore, you can use it on as many domains as you wish.

Get Solid Affiliate

AffiliateWP

AffiliateWP wordpress affiliate plugin

AffiliateWP is a feature-rich premium WordPress affiliate plugin that will help you create and manage an affiliate program. It is ideally suited to programs of any size because it allows for unlimited affiliates and has robust affiliate and referral tracking features.

Pros

  • Plenty of integrations, including most of the popular eCommerce and membership plugins
  • Unlimited affiliates and creative (visual resources or text links)
  • Good range of affiliate management tools
  • Affiliate dashboard
  • Integrated referral link generator
  • Real-time reporting
  • A range of add-ons is available to increase functionality
  • 14-day moneyback guarantee

Cons

  • Payments are via a ‘Payout Service’ with fees attached
  • Certain features are only available with the most expensive plan, such as PayPal payouts, some integrations, affiliate portal, recurring referrals, lifetime commissions, etc.
  • Limited site usage (1 to 10 domains depending on the plan purchased)
  • No lifetime plans are available

Price

  • Three plans of AffiliateWP are offered. Personal costs $149.50 per year, and Plus is $199.50 per year, the only difference between them being the number of domains they cover (one and three, respectively). However, the most expensive plan, Professional, covers up to ten domains, includes many more features, and costs $299.50 per year.

Get AffiliateWP

Yith WooCommerce Affiliates

Yith is a freemium WordPress affiliate plugin that, even in its free form, has sufficient functionality to help you establish and manage an excellent affiliate program for your WooCommerce store. However, the Premium plan takes the features list to a different level, with robust affiliate and link tracking tools, plus it is possible to configure the cookie validity duration. Furthermore, you can easily convert your existing users into affiliates.

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Pros

  • A simple affiliate registration process
  • Variable commission rates
  • Configurable cookie validity
  • Automatic commission and refund calculation and payouts
  • Real-time sales and referrals tracking
  • Integral affiliate portal
  • Translation ready

Cons

  • Features are somewhat limited in the free version

Price

  • There are both free and premium versions of Yith. The premium one costs $99.99 per year and includes updates and support plus a whole host of other useful features. Furthermore, it comes with a 30-day moneyback guarantee, so trying out the extensive premium features is risk-free.

Get Yith WooCommerce Affiliates

SliceWP

 SliceWP

SliceWP is an excellent freemium plugin for creating and managing an affiliate program on your WordPress site. The free version is very usable, offering a good feature set, while the premium plans add all the extras you may need as your program gains momentum, such as customizable affiliate registration forms, PayPal integration, and social sharing. The premium plan also includes access to a dedicated support team to address any issues you encounter quickly.

Pros

  • Integrates with most popular eCommerce platforms, including WooCommerce
  • Slick user interface
  • Good array of features in the free version, although the premium plans have many more
  • Fixed or percentage-based commissions
  • Robust affiliate registration and management features
  • Unlimited affiliates and creatives
  • Premium plans have a 30-day moneyback guarantee

Cons

  • Premium plans are more expensive than some competitors and only include limited licenses (1 or 10 domains depending on the plan purchased)

Price

In addition to the free version, SliceWP is available in three premium plans: Basic ($99/year), Pro ($169/year), and Pro Plus ($259/year). Basic and Pro each cover a single domain, while Pro Plus covers up to ten. The premium plans come with add-ons that increase functionality, plus developer support. Lifetime plans are also available.

Get SliceWP

Post Affiliate Pro

Post Affiliate Pro

Post Affiliate Pro is an easy-to-use WordPress affiliate plugin with an extensive toolbox for managing affiliates, tracking referrals and sales, and generating reports. The plugin supports over 220 integrations, including content management systems, eCommerce platforms, and payment gateways. Furthermore, the higher paid plans also include a site replication feature that allows you to create personalized pages for each of your affiliates on your site.

Pros

  • An expansive range of marketing, tracking, and management  tools
  • Detailed reports
  • Integrates with most popular eCommerce platforms, including WooCommerce
  • Slick user interface
  • Unlimited affiliates and creatives
  • Over 220 integrations and 125 plugins included
  • 14-day free trial available

Cons

  • Tracking requests (impressions, events, clicks, and sales) are subject to monthly limits, with extra charges once those limits are exceeded
  • Very expensive compared to other plugins

Price

  • Post Affiliate Pro plans start from $97 to $477 per month. Yes, you read that correctly; those prices are per month and not per year. Therefore, this plugin will probably only suit established businesses with complex affiliate marketing requirements.

Get Post Affiliate Pro

Easy Affiliate

EasyAffiliate wordpress affiliate plugin

Easy Affiliate is a powerful plugin that includes robust affiliate tracking and management features that will help you run a successful affiliate marketing program. Set up is simple, and the plugin will soon have you monitoring clicks and sales brought in by your affiliates and managing their commission payments. Furthermore, Easy Affiliate integrates with many other solutions, such as WooCommerce, PayPal, and MemberPress.

Pros

  • One-click payouts with no transaction fees
  • Real-time reports
  • Integral affiliate dashboard (customizable)
  • Shopping cart integration to manage both one-time and recurring payments from gateways like PayPal, Authorize.net, etc.
  • Fraud detection and advanced security features
  • Supports PayPal one-click and bulk payments, and also offline payments
  • 14-day moneyback guarantee

Cons

  • No lifetime subscriptions are available
  • Limited site usage (1 to 5 domains depending on the plan)
  • The Basic plan does not include all features

Price

  • Easy Affiliate is available in three plans: Basic ($99.50/year), Plus ($149.50/year), and Pro ($199.50/year), each covering 1, 3, or 5 domains, respectively. However, the Pro plan has the most features, including fraud detection, custom commission rules and levels, etc.

Get Easy Affiliate

WP Affiliate Manager

WP Affiliate Manager

Suppose you don’t have any spare budget to play with. In that case, you will be chuffed to know that WP Affiliate Manager is a free WordPress affiliate plugin that has some great features to help get your affiliate marketing program off the ground. You can have any number of affiliates and creatives, plus it integrates with many eCommerce solutions, including WooCommerce, PayPal, Stripe, and MemberPress, although some integrations do require a free or premium add-on.

Pros

  • Easy management, tracking, and payment of affiliates
  • Real-time sales and referrals tracking
  • Integral affiliate portal where users can sign up to your program and manage their membership
  • Flat-rate or percentage-based commissions
  • Translation ready
  • Customizable affiliate registration
  • Paypal commission payments, with the option for manual adjustments (e.g., for bonuses)
  • Good range of free and premium add-ons to extend the functionality
  • Good documentation
  • Free

Cons

  • You will need to pay $39 (single site) or $97 (multiple sites) if you want technical support

Price

  • WP Affiliate Manager is free, although you need to pay for the technical support as already mentioned. Also, the premium add-ons attract a charge – see the plugin website for prices.

Get WP Affiliate Manager

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Ultimate Affiliate Pro

Ultimate Affiliate Pro

Ultimate Affiliate Pro is a premium WordPress affiliate plugin that offers a big bang for your bucks. Priced at only $69, it brings you features typically found only on more expensive plugins, such as affiliate rankings, unlimited affiliates, banners, tiered commissions, and many more.

Pros

  • Impressive feature list for the money, including robust affiliate enrolment and management tools
  • Ability to add custom currencies
  • Good documentation, including video tutorials
  • QR codes for affiliate links
  • PayPal and Stripe commission payments
  • Wallet feature to allow affiliates to spend their earnings on your site
  • Range of integrations, including WooCommerce
  • Library of registration, login, and account templates

Cons

  • The plugin only includes six months of support

Price

  • Ultimate Affiliate Pro is sold through Code Canyon and costs $69 per year. That includes all future updates plus six months of developer support, which you can extend to a full year for an additional $24.

Get Ultimate Affiliate Pro

Coupon Affiliates

Coupon Affiliates wordpress affiliate plugin

As you will have undoubtedly guessed from the name, Coupon Affiliates is a unique plugin in that it creates a coupon-based affiliate program for your WooCommerce store. Affiliates offer coupons for your products to their audience and receive a commission for each one that converts into a sale. In addition, both you and the affiliate will be able to track the performance of each coupon and fine-tune the marketing strategy accordingly.

Pros

  • Quick and easy way to establish and manage your affiliate program
  • Coupons are an effective and proven method of generating sales
  • The plugin has excellent tools for managing affiliates, coupons, and payouts, including reports and analytics
  • Multi-currency support
  • Integral affiliate dashboard
  • 7-day free trial and 14-day moneyback guarantee

Cons

  • The plugin only works with WooCommerce-based stores

Price

  • The price of Coupon Affiliates depends on a) the number of domains you wish to cover and b) whether you need a monthly, annual, or lifetime subscription. For example, a monthly subscription for a single site will cost $9.99, an annual subscription for three domains will cost $191.88, while a lifetime subscription for twenty-five sites will set you back $1,439.99.

A skinny free version of Coupon Affiliates is also available in the WordPress plugin directory.

Get Coupon Affiliates

Refer a Friend for WooCommerce

Here’s a freemium plugin that is slightly different from the ones I have mentioned so far. Refer a Friend for WooCommerce allows you to reward your customers with coupons whenever they direct their family and friends to your website. The plugin generates custom links for registered customers, who can then share them as they wish (via email, social media, etc.) in return for a coupon for each sale they attract. In fact, it’s basically a great way of using the general public as affiliate marketers to promote your products!

Pros

  • Provides a fee/cheap and straightforward solution for fledgling eCommerce businesses to capture a broader market
  • No commissions to worry about, just coupons, which are automatically generated and issued by the plugin
  • Analytics to show the performance of each referrer
  • Coupons are redeemable in your store, so no cash payouts are needed
  • The premium version includes configurable coupon rules, e.g., minimum purchase, whether or not they can be combined with other offers, etc.

Cons

  • None found

Price

  • The premium version of Refer a Friend for WooCommerce costs $47 for a single site license, rising to $199 for unlimited domains. All premium licenses include one year of updates and developer support.

Get Refer a Friend for WooCommerce

What’s Your Favorite WordPress Affiliate Plugin?

Affiliate marketing is an excellent way of getting other people to do your marketing for you in return for a commission. It is basically ‘pay-as-you-go,’ something which is a real advantage for all businesses, but particularly smaller ones that don’t have a massive advertising budget to play with. Establishing an affiliate program is more straightforward than you think, and a WordPress affiliate plugin can make implementing it easy too.

Are you already using affiliate marketing to promote your products through your WordPress site? If so, are you using a plugin? Which is your favorite? And if you have yet to venture into affiliate marketing, I hope this article has given you some inspiration.

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I'm a former construction industry professional who came out of the writer's closet and am now totally comfortable with my creative side. My pronouns are smart, creative, witty, and dependable. I have written content in a number of niches including WordPress, plus I'm a blogger and affiliate marketer. If you'd like to know more about how I can help you, please head over to my website.