We live in the age of sharing.
Events, photos, articles, feelings, food—it seems like just about everything is better when shared.
Then again, that’s just what’s trendy right now.
“If all your friends were jumping off a bridge, would you do it too?”
I’m sure that almost every child on earth has heard some variation of this sentence at some point in their lives.
I’ll admit, I heard it several times from my parents when I was young.
While the phrase itself is rather cliche, the point our parents were trying to make was clear: Just because everyone is doing something, doesn’t make it a good idea.
That’s why we’re always a little skeptical, even when an affiliate network is very popular.
But do we trust this company just because everyone else does?
Today, we’re going to answer those questions and see whether this affiliate marketing network is the right choice for you.
Who’s Behind ShareASale?
ShareASale has been in business for more than 17 years, and they’ve worked hard to become one of the top names in the business.
They’re constantly making improvements to their program, and working towards making both merchants and affiliates happier.
They themselves boast of holding a reputation as an honest and fair company, and their actions support those words. They provide excellent customer service, efficient tools and accurate reporting.
As of January 2017, ShareASale was acquired by Affiliate Window (now known as Awin), an international affiliate network. For now, the two companies continue to run separately. However, there may be some very lucrative opportunities for international affiliates coming in the near future.
ShareASale Review: 13 Things We Love and Hate
What We Love
1. Reputable Company
When you see a company that’s been in the business for so long and is still successful, then there must be a reason behind it. ShareASale has a reputation online and offline as a respectable company, and both merchants and affiliates sing its praises.
More than that, ShareASale is now directly connected with another colossal company in this industry. Ever since the acquisition by Awin, ShareASale seems to be gaining ground.
2. Free and Easy Signup
Signing up for ShareASale is a simple, five-step process that can be done in a matter of minutes. ShareASale has made sure that signing up isn’t complicated for new publishers.
3. Easy to Use for Affiliates with Multiple Websites
If you’re an affiliate marketer who owns several websites and would like to monetize all of them with ShareASale, you’re in luck! This network makes it very simple for owners of multiple websites to apply to different programs.
You’ll have the chance to input all of the websites that you currently own, listing them in order of importance. In this way, you won’t need to sign up multiple times for every merchant program that you apply for. Apply once, and all of your websites will be active for that program!
4. Incredible Variety of Merchants
Whether your field of expertise is tech, weddings, apparel, fitness, automotive, gifts, productivity or practically anything else, ShareASale has you covered. In fact, they boast over 40 different categories, filled with over 4,800 different merchants! That’s an incredible number, and it’s growing every day.
Many of these merchants are big names in their respective fields, including Viator, WP Engine, Mod Cloth, Jillian Michaels, the NBA Store and more! ShareASale has a good mix of large brands and small businesses as merchants, so you’ll have plenty of variety when choosing which programs to join.
5. Efficient Search Functions
With more than 4,800 merchant programs available to you on ShareASale, how are you going to find the one that fits your business the best?
Introducing ShareASale’s fantastic search options. You’ll be able to filter your searches based on certain keywords, category merchant EPC, sale commission, merchant status or even how long they’ve been a part of ShareASale.
More that than, ShareASale has a feature that helps you sort through the best of the available merchants, called a PowerRank. This allows you to look through the top 100 merchants currently on ShareASale.
With these tools, you’ll easily find your perfect affiliate program!
6. Responsive Customer Support
Customer support is a major complaint for almost all of the other big-name affiliate marketing networks. Thus, this point is an even greater plus for ShareASale.
This affiliate network prides itself in great customer support for both merchants and affiliates. If you have any doubts, you can contact them by phone or email. From 9:00 AM to 6:00 PM Central Time, ShareASale’s customer support team is ready to answer your questions.
More than that, new affiliates will receive a welcome kit that helps them dive in to affiliate marketing. Affiliates also have the option to watch training webinars that will help them improve their skills.
Additionally, you’ll find a comprehensive FAQ section on their website, which will probably provide an answer to most questions.
7. Customized Deep Linking
Nobody likes super-long links, and sometimes those extra numbers and letters that are part of your affiliate ID will make visitors wary to click.
ShareASale eliminates this problem by allowing you to fully customize your affiliate links. You can create shortened URLs, which are much more attractive to users. ShareASale also gives you handy social tools which allow users to share your affiliate link with others!
8. Reliable Monthly Payments
Part of the benefit of working with such a large company is the fact that you get your payments exactly when you expect them.
On the 20th of each month, ShareASale will send your affiliate earnings directly to your bank account. They’re able to send money to banks in many different countries, so this is also a benefit. If you prefer, you can receive a check or be paid through Payoneer.
9. Variety of Reporting Features
For your affiliate marketing business to run successfully, you need to see exactly what’s going on with your affiliate links. ShareASale allows you to do that.
With general reporting features, ShareASale gives you an easy-to-understand overview of how your affiliate links are working for you. Additionally, you can create customized reports that show you exactly the metrics that you want to see.
ShareASale’s tracking is all in real-time, so you’ll be able to see clicks and sales as they happen. You can also use their clickstream feature to see the steps that each user takes to get to your affiliate link, and later to a purchase.
What We Don’t Love
10. No PayPal Payouts
This is a common complaint among the larger affiliate networks, but it should still be noted that we don’t like it.
11. High Payout Threshold
ShareASale’s payout threshold is $50 for affiliates. This is quite a bit higher than most of its competitors, which may be a turn-off for newer affiliates. However, larger affiliate marketing businesses won’t find this to be a problem.
12. Threat of Fees and Account Deletion
It has been said that ShareASale will debit your account $25 if you don’t reach the $50 threshold, and you may risk account deletion if your balance is below $25. Again, this is a bigger problem for newer affiliate marketers who may not have a good amount of sales yet. This isn’t something that larger affiliate marketers will need to worry about.
13. No Notification of Program Deletion
Some affiliates with the ShareASale affiliate network have complained that certain merchant programs were deleted from the network without warning. Since affiliates had no notification of the deletion, their affiliate links were suddenly useless. This is a rather large problem that ShareASale should take care of.
However, if affiliates stay on top of tracking and reports, they’ll be able to tell if something is wrong with one of their links.
From what we’ve discussed above, it looks like joining ShareASale isn’t the equivalent of jumping off the bridge just because everyone else is! (My mom will be so pleased.)
Digging deeper into the information, we’ve seen that there are solid reasons behind ShareASale’s success in the world of affiliate marketing. In this review, you’ve learned how ShareASale takes good care of its affiliates through responsive customer support and timely payouts.
They also excel at integrated search features and customized deep linking, as well as helpful reporting. And with their huge variety of merchants, you’ll always have something to promote in your niche!
ShareASale may have its faults, but it certainly stands out as one of the top affiliate marketing networks currently available.