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Marketing Monday: Loyalty Sites

We discussed affiliate marketing before as well as coupon codes, including the pros and cons of using coupon codes for your online store (see below in this blog).

One type of ecommerce marketing that poses similar advantages and challenges is working with loyalty sites.

Loyalty sites (sometimes also called incentive sites) such as eBates, are a specific type of affiliate marketing. They give and fund an incentive to customers with cash back or by awarding certain loyalty points (or a combination of the two) if they click the link and make a purchase. They fund this incentive with the commissions earned as one of your affiliates.


Should you start working with loyalty sites?

One of the biggest advantages is exposure – eBates, for example, has over eight million members. Wouldn’t you like to have your online store featured in their e-mail?

A problem can be if there are only very small numbers of new customers responding, and that there are more people who are already familiar with your online store or brand who are just looking for a discount.

Also consider that a new customer coming through a loyalty site will likely identify the good deal with the loyalty site in the first place. So this client will probably be less likely to come for a repeat visit to your online store directly (but will instead be loyal to the loyalty site).

Especially be beware of loyalty sites that incorporate a toolbar or browser button that alerts their customers if they are eligible for a discount. Even though they didn’t drive the traffic to your site, you will still need to pay commission in this case!


Be sure to look at the possible drawbacks of loyalty sites. These specific affiliate networks can help, however, with driving a lot of traffic to your website.

Apart from eBates you could consider GoodShop and give your image as a socially responsible business a boost (they donate a part of the commission to charity).

Take a look at our pages on affiliate marketing and coupons and decide how and if these Ecommerce Marketing methods fit in your overall marketing strategy.

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