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How To Join Profitable SaaS Affiliate Programs

Africa Aguiar Lería
Africa Aguiar Lería

SaaS Affiliate Programs are a common occurrence in the world of digital commerce. It is a partnership between two interested parties, one of which seeks to gain income through advertising of the other's products or solutions, and agreed upon for their mutual benefit. We can imagine bloggers, social media influencers or website owners willing to present great software to their audience, and earn commissions for new users brought in, but also certain companies specializing in this format of advertising.

Throughout the partnership, both the affiliate and the software company are able to track how the partnership is going, checking clicks, conversions, etc. At regular intervals, disclosed upon the drafting of the agreement, the affiliate gets rewarded for any new business he has helped the company acquire. Affiliate programs are in fact considered one of the best ways of monetizing blogs.

The best SaaS Affiliate Programs work as a way for companies to expand their reach, leaning on the help of communication-savvy affiliates. Programs such as these are a win for everybody, as the affiliate earns for bringing in customers, and the company grows its user base.

Who can benefit from a SaaS affiliate program?

Affiliate programs for SaaS can be beneficial for expert communicators in the SaaS and tech sector. Because of the high benefits it proposes, there are a few elements that are paramount in order to be approved to become a SaaS affiliate.

An ideal affiliate profile usually hinges on several key factors that we can outline here:

  1. A robust online presence: having a pre-existing online presence with significant monthly traffic is essential to be considered for an affiliate partner. Whether that be through a website, a blog, social media platform or other, creating regular, engaging content related to the niche or the industry of the SaaS is one of the, if not the most important, factors to be considered. However, typically the quality of the platform and the content will play a more significant role in the approval process than the size of the audience.
  2. The content’s relevance: the affiliate’s creations should closely align with the SaaS they aspire to promote. As an example, a blog specializing in marketing would be ideally suited to promote automation SaaS, emailing tools, or CMS. One specializing in fitness, however, would not be such a good fit for these tools.
  3. The quality of the audience: while companies seldom look for a specific number of followers, viewers, or clicks, they are very interested in audiences that are engaged, as this proves the affiliate’s capacity to reach customers effectively, and proves that his content interests the users he touches.
  4. Having previous affiliate experience: this is by no means mandatory, however, as with anything, having experience as an affiliate marketer will definitely boost one’s chances, as it proves familiarity with the process and a record of successful promotions.

In a nutshell, an ideal candidate for a SaaS affiliate program is the one who possesses a strong online presence, creates qualitative content which is relevant to the product, has an engaged audience, and maybe has some previous affiliate experiences under his belt. These factors collectively will greatly impact the decision-making process, and ticking several of these boxes will heavily tilt the scales in your favor.

The five essential steps in a SaaS Affiliate Program Journey are here detailed, going from sign up, to promotion and reward.
A successful SaaS Affiliate Program journey is essentially comprised of five steps, beginning always with promotion and finishing with reward.

What can each party gain from such a collaboration?

The beauty of top SaaS Affiliate Programs is they offer substantial benefits, both for the SaaS company and the affiliate involved. Nowadays, the benefits of such collaborations are extending to new areas of service and business, such as for example business models powered by AI. Nowadays, AIaaS is an emerging alternative to SaaS, that will soon present a brand new field of possibilities for affiliate partnerships.

For the company, on the one hand, this model serves as a cost-effective marketing tool based on a pay-for-performance model. It enables businesses to tap into vast networks and audiences through their affiliates, expanding their reach exponentially, without any upfront marketing expenses. The results of this action are increased brand visibility, improved credibility through the affiliate’s endorsement, and a bigger customer base. Finally, the company only pays commissions for the actual conversions, which assures a direct return on investment.

On the other hand, affiliates also benefit extensively from participating in SaaS Affiliate Programs, as it enables them to earn a reasonable stream of passive income. As they leverage their existing platforms and audiences in order to promote valuable SaaS products, they earn a commission for every successful referral or sale. It serves as a lucrative stream of revenue, especially for those affiliates with larger and engaged audiences. Additionally, being openly recognized as a SaaS business partner enhances the affiliate’s reputation as a trusted source of information and relevant online presence to keep up with. Affiliate programs for SaaS offer also flexibility, permitting affiliates to work from anywhere, at their own pace. This makes it an appealing option for those seeking extra income streams, or even a full-time online business.

What you need to know before becoming a SaaS Affiliate

If you’re interested in becoming a successful affiliate, you want to associate yourself with the best software affiliate programs, and there are several mindful tips that can help you find them.

Firstly, be mindful of choosing a SaaS product that is aligned with your content and resonates with your audience. Choosing a relevant product will increase the likelihood of conversions and of your audience appreciating what you share. This is also a key way of building trust with your audience: by sharing something they might be genuinely interested in, they’ll be predisposed to engage with further recommendations. This is a double edged sword, since the opposite is also true: if you were to share something completely different from your normal content and lacking interest, they’ll be distrusting of any future recommendations.

Secondly, use your platform wisely! Always think in terms of quality, create the best content you’re capable of, make it engaging and educational to properly inform about the SaaS’s benefits. Authenticity is key in this step, whether you’re creating through a blog post, video, or social media, avoid overtly promotional content, always speak truthfully and from your own experience.

Finally, since the goal is, after all, content that converts, always underline the problem-solving aspect of the SaaS product. How is it going to make your viewer’s lifes easier? Highlight how it tackles common pain points, or improves efficiency for its users. Add your unique tracking link naturally within the content.

Naturally, always understand and thoroughly read the terms and conditions of affiliate partnerships. We recommend you collaborate only with the best SaaS Affiliate Programs that propose fair commission structures, reliable tracking systems, and good support for affiliates. For example, the SaaS Affiliate Program by Cloudimage is such a one.

Discover which are the essential elements to take into account when making your choice of a SaaS Affiliate Program.
There are important elements to consider when you're choosing the right SaaS Affiliate Program for you. Analyse them carefully and don't overlook any step.

Learn about SaaS Affiliate Program commission models

Commissions are the cornerstone of a SaaS Affiliate Program, since without them, we’d just be talking about ambassadorship. That is why they merit special attention and consideration when you’re weighing what the best affiliate program for software is for you.

There are different commission models currently available that dictate how affiliates can earn their rewards. One of the most common models is known as Cost Per Action (CPA) and this is when affiliates receive a fixed commission for each specific action taken by the referred customer. The action could be defined as many things: a purchase, a software subscription, a free trial sign-up. The actions considered reward-worthy are established and disclosed by the SaaS to its affiliates. CPA is a straightforward commission system, it guarantees reward for successful conversion, and it’s a very popular choice for affiliates that are seeking predictability and a certain level of stability in their earnings.

Alternatively, we encounter the Revenue Share (also known as RevShare) model. This model is particularly prevalent amongst SaaS programs. With RevShare, affiliates earn a percentage of the revenue generated by their referred customer over a specific period of time. This earned percentage can range from a one-time commission for the initial sale, to an ongoing commission for the duration of the referred customer’s subscription. The RevShare commission model rewards affiliates based on the customer’s lifetime value, and it incentivizes them to bring in high-quality, long-term customers. It’s a model that perfectly aligns the economic interests of affiliate and SaaS, since they both benefit from the customer’s continued use of the product.

Since both models have their advantages, CPA offering upfront, predictable earnings, and RevShare providing the potential for recurring revenue, how should you choose between them? Depending on your particular needs and goals at a time, you may lean toward one or the other. Those only just beginning their affiliate marketing journey may benefit from CPA offering, since lead quality and lifetime value aren’t taken into account, only conversions, which is an easier target to achieve with limited experience and knowledge. Those who are more advanced, have ample affiliate experience, have figured out the inner workings of the funnel and are confident in their ability to generate high-quality, long-lasting leads, stand to gain more from a RevShare commission system, where the full scope of their work, not only the conversion, is rewarded.

How to compare different SaaS Affiliate Programs

We’ve gone over one of the key elements of choosing the right SaaS Affiliate Program for you: commissions. However, when facing the decision of choosing between a multitude of SaaS Affiliate Programs, there will be many other elements to take into consideration.

To start, researching the company behind the program should always be step number one, and it is a crucial one. Familiarize yourself with their reputation, take a look at their customer reviews, and their financial stability. A reputable company is more likely to offer reliable programs, and it is also relevant that what you recommend to your audience is of the highest quality. Your entire affiliate endeavor rests on the trust you have built between you and your audience, and this cannot be risked by mindlessly sharing unresearched solutions.

Next, assess what specific challenges may arise when promoting that specific SaaS product. You may consider factors such as the target audience’s needs, the level of competition in the market, the uniqueness of the product’s features, and the affordability of its pricing. Understand these challenges to consider how to best craft an effective promotional strategy, and to decide if the particularities of the project fall in the scope of your expertise.

The differences between the SaaS products themselves are also significant. Make sure you’re comparing features, customer support and user experience. A product standing out in these categories is not only easier to promote but will also lead to higher conversions and longer life-cycles.

Lastly, consider the program’s tracking system and their support for affiliates. Make sure there’s a robust tracking system in place that ensures accurate monitoring of clicks, conversions and commissions earned. You also want programs that will facilitate comprehensive training materials, marketing resources and dedicated affiliate managers. A supportive SaaS Affiliate Program makes the journey smoother and more rewarding.

Key Takeaways

To participate in a SaaS Affiliate Program presents an incredibly valuable opportunity, both for the company and the affiliate. As companies benefit from cost-effective marketing and expanded reach, affiliates can enjoy passive income streams, access to high-quality services and a strengthened online reputation.

It’s important to keep in mind that in order to be a successful affiliate, we want to focus on relevance to our audience and create engaging content that highlights problem-solving abilities. With these key elements in mind, one can step into the world of top software affiliate programs confidently, ready to build successful collaborations and generate revenue through effective promotions.


Africa Aguiar Lería