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Published on January 26, 2023

Best Automated Affiliate Marketing Software

At first glance, most affiliate marketing software may seem the same.

But we’ve found that each one has unique features that can impact your affiliate program’s success. Beyond price differences, common issues we’ve encountered with many automated affiliate marketing software include:

  • It isn’t fully compatible with your e-commerce or business platform
  • It cannot handle the level of customization your affiliate program needs
  • It requires you to pay for add-ons to run abasic affiliate program

In this article, we’ll analyze some of the most popular automation software for managing your affiliate program.

You probably noticed that the tools are categorized into three groups:

  • WordPress Plugins: These tools allow you to own your data, and you can manage the entire program from your WordPress dashboard. It’s also relatively easy to create your own customizations and build on them.
  • SaaS Platforms: These are third-party platforms, so you’ll log into that company’s dashboard to manage your program. The downside of SaaS platforms is that the company owns your data, meaning they could theoretically lock you out of your databy raising prices (or if they’re acquired).
  • Partner Platforms: These are SaaS platforms, but instead of specializing in affiliate programs, they tend to offer asuite of partner marketing tools, such as referral and influencer management. They are typically more expensive than SaaS platforms and WordPress plugins.

Solid Affiliate – Best WordPress Plugin For WooCommerce Stores

Solid Affiliate is an affiliate marketing plugin built specifically forWooCommerce.

It offers all of the basic features that you’d expect from aquality affiliate marketing plugin, including:

  • Affiliate link and coupon tracking: Track custom links and coupon codes to reward the right affiliates for orders.
  • Affiliate management: Accept or reject affiliate applications and monitor their activities.
  • Advanced commission rate customization: Set custom rates for specific affiliates, products, categories, etc.
  • Automatic PayPal payouts: Automatically pay all pending commissions viaPayPal
  • Refund protection: Never lose money to refunds or fraudulent orders.
  • Automatic email notifications: Automatically notify affiliates about updates and payments.
  • Affiliate portal: Allow affiliates to manage their referral activity and easily access marketing materials.
  • Comprehensive reporting. Get detailed insights into your program’s performance and profitability.

While the features above are table-stakes for any affiliate marketing software, below we’ll discuss afew of the key differentiators that make Solid Affiliate the best choice for WooCommerce users.

Key Differentiator #1: Specialization in WooCommerce and Deep Integrations With WordPress

Solid Affiliate has native integrations with WordPress, which offer the following benefits to you:

  • The setup process is dead simple: Solid Affiliate’s setup wizard is designed exclusively for WooCommerce, so it only takes afew clicks (and zero coding knowledge!) to get your affiliate program running.
  • You own your data: Unlike third-party platforms that own the data(and can shut you down at any moment or raise prices and lock you out of your data), Solid Affiliate users own their data.
  • Unlimited customization capabilities: Given that it’s aplugin, you can simply extend the code to customize it to fit your needs.

While those are afew of the benefits of using aplugin with deep WordPress integrations, Solid Affiliate is also the only plugin that’s designed specifically for WooCommerce users.

This specialization benefits you because:

  • WooCommerce Subscriptions affiliate tracking is included in the basic plan: If you’re using WooCommerce Subscriptions, you don’t have to pay for an add-on.
  • Affiliate commissions are calculated with ahigh degree of accuracy: As Solid Affiliate seamlessly integrates with your WooCommerce data, it calculates the commission for each individual item included in aperson’s purchase (rather than the lump sum purchase). This way, you don’t overpay affiliates for items that aren’t part of your affiliate program.
  • Nuanced features designed specifically for WooCommerce users: Solid Affiliate offers aselection of different features that other plugins don’t simply because they are specific to the WooCommerce platform. For example, you have access to WooCommerce order notes, can set specific commission rates inside WooCommerce, and track refund logging.

Key Differentiator #2: Best Value (Never Pay for Add-ons and Unlimited Everything)

Solid Affiliate is unique in that you can access every feature and you can have unlimited affiliates, payouts, referrals, and traffic at the most basic pricing tier.

This makes Solid Affiliate perhaps the most scalable affiliate plugins as you’ll never have to upgrade to ahigher pricing tier as you scale.

For example, here are just afew of the features that most other affiliate marketing software blocks behind higher pricing tiers (or offers as add-ons) that Solid Affiliate offers in the most basic pricing plan:

  • Pro Affiliate Portal: Your affiliates can easily access and manage their referrals inside aclean, easy-to-use affiliate portal.
  • PayPal Bulk Payouts: Easily pay your affiliates with afew clicks thanks to our bulk payouts integration.
  • WooCommerce Subscriptions: If you charge for subscription revenue, you don’t have to pay extrafor subscription renewal referrals thanks to our native WooCommerce subscriptions integration.
  • Admin Notifications: You’ll receive notifications for critical tasks, like payments, new application approvals, and more.

In addition, because we offer unlimited everything, you’ll pay the same price at 100 affiliates/referrals/payouts as you will at 10,000 affiliates/referrals/payouts. This means you’ll never have to worry about changing to anew affiliate marketing software platform as you scale.

Key Differentiator #3: User Friendly With a2-Minute Setup Process

Many affiliate marketing tools are complex and challenging for anon-technical store owner to operate.

So we wanted to make Solid Affiliate super easy to use. Starting with the setup process, we created asetup wizard that walks you through the simple four-step process. In fact, anyone can get their affiliate program up and running in less than two minutes.

Here’s the super simple four-step setup process:

  • Step 1: Install and activate WooCommerce
  • Step 2: Configure outgoing email settings so that Solid Affiliate can send notifications when affiliates apply or drive referrals.
  • Step 3: Paste in your license key.
  • Step 4: Setup your affiliate portal

To see for yourself how easy the setup process is, check out the video below:

Note: You can always change the address of your affiliate portal if you don’t like the default.

If you use WooCommerce Subscriptions, the setup process is the same. Just make sure the WooCommerce Subscriptions plugin is installed and active on your website.

This way, you don’t have to hire adeveloper or someone with more technical expertise to do it for you.

We also have ahighly responsive customer support team and are always improving the product based on customer recommendations and feedback.

If you want to see for yourself how Solid Affiliate can help you create an automated affiliate marketing program, sign up today risk free! 

How to Create an Automated Affiliate Marketing Program With Solid Affiliate

To give you an ideaof how easy it is to create amore effective affiliate marketing program with Solid Affiliate, here’s aquick product walkthrough.

Step 1: Setup and Install Solid Affiliate

To get started with Solid Affiliate, make sure you have WooCommerce installed on your WordPress site and then follow the simple setup wizard to set it up.

Even if you have zero technological expertise, it should only take about two minutes to execute this process.

Step 2: Affiliates Apply to Join Your Program

Once you’ve installed Solid Affiliate on your WordPress site, you can start accepting affiliate applications.

When affiliates are accepted into your program, this is the exact same page they’ll use to log into their affiliate portal.

Step 3: You Can Approve or Reject Affiliates

When someone applies to your affiliate program, you’ll receive anotification that there are pending applications.

You can simply log into your WordPress dashboard to approve or reject applications.

Approved applicants will then receive anotification that they are approved and can log into the affiliate portal to access brand creatives and track sales data.

Step 4: Manage Your Commission Settings

Most affiliate programs allow astandard commission setting, though you often have to upgrade to ahigher pricing tier to customize commission settings.

However, Solid Affiliate allows all customers – even those on the most basic pricing tier – to set advanced commission settings.

Here are the specific commission settings that all Solid Affiliate users can offer:

  • Global defaults: This is the default commission percentage that will be applied to all referred sales unless otherwise specified with the advanced commission options below.
  • Affiliate commission rates: If you want to give aparticular affiliate adifferent commission rate, you can do so.
  • Product-specific commission rates: If there is aparticular product that you want to offer at adifferent commission rate, you can do so with this feature. You can also exclude particular products from your affiliate program.
  • Product-category specific commission rates: If there’s aparticular category of products that you want to set adifferent commission rate for, you can do so with this feature.
  • Lifetime commissions: If you want to reward your affiliates for every purchase that areferred customer purchases, this feature makes that possible.
  • Subscription renewal referrals: If an affiliate sends acustomer that purchases arecurring subscription, this feature allows the affiliate to earn apercentage of every recurring purchase.

With access to so many different commission settings, you can customize your affiliate program to maximize profitability and effectively incentivize affiliates to promote your products.

Step 5: Affiliates Start Sending Referrals, and Solid Affiliate Automatically Tracks Them

Now that you have affiliates referring customers, Solid Affiliate automatically tracks sales from each affiliate’s link and stores the datain the dashboard.

It offers adetailed breakdown of each referred order with information like:

  • Affiliate ID
  • Order Amount
  • Commission Amount
  • Referral Source

Step 6: Pay Your Affiliates

When it’s time to pay your affiliates, Solid Affiliate makes the process super easy.

First, you can use the PayPal integration to pay your affiliates in bulk with just afew clicks.

In addition, Solid Affiliate offers adetailed breakdown of how each commission amount was calculated. For example, it calculates the commission percentage for each individual product and then shows you that breakdown rather than simply applying ageneral percentage to areferral’s total order value.

This detailed commission tracking improves commission payment accuracy and helps reduce affiliate payment disputes.

Step 7: Protect Yourself From Refund Fraud

You’ll neve have to worry about refund fraud as Solid Affiliate has fraud detection capabilities that automatically rejects refunded orders and kicks it out of the payment calculations.

In addition, Solid Affiliate is designed to only pay affiliates after your store’s refund window has closed.

For example, if you have a30 day refund policy, you won’t be prompted to pay affiliates until 31 days have passed since the purchase date.

To see for yourself how Solid Affiliate can help you create astreamlined affiliate marketing strategy try it out for yourself today!



AffiliateWP – Best WordPress Plugin For Easy Digital Downloads

AffiliateWP is another popular affiliate marketing plugin for WordPress, and it works well with Easy Digital Download. While AffiliateWP has aWooCommerce integration, we do not recommend it. AffiliateWP is owned by the same company that owns Easy Digital Downloads.

AffiliateWP offers all of the standard features you’d expect from aWordPress affiliate marketing plugin, including:

  • Affiliate tracking
  • Real-time reporting
  • Referral link generator
  • Payout logs

However, many essential features are only offered as add-ons or at significantly higher pricing tiers. Some of these features include:

  • PayPal payouts
  • Affiliate portals
  • Direct link tracking
  • Lifetime commissions
  • Recurring commissions
  • Tiered referrals

All of the above features are included on Solid Affiliate’s basic pricing tier, which makes AffiliateWP much more costly as you scale.

Solid Affiliate also provides athorough breakdown of how each commission was calculated whereas AffiliateWP simply shows the total commission amount.

For example, let’s say you set custom commission rates like 20% for product A, 15% for product B and excluded product C. In this case, it can be tricky to understand how the commission total was calculated, which can make it difficult to resolve commission disputes with affiliates as you won’t know how the total was calculated.



SliceWP –Best Freemium WordPress Plugin For Non-WooCommerce Startups

SliceWP is another affiliate plugin with anative WordPress integration that is compatible with ecommerce and membership platforms like Easy Digital Downloads and MemberPress. There is also aWooCommerce integration but if you’re using WooCommerce, then Solid Affiliate is far and away the best option.

You’ll find the standard affiliate marketing features, including:

  • Affiliate link tracking
  • Affiliate dashboard
  • Customizable email notifications
  • Auto-approve affiliates

Unfortunately, most of the more advanced features (and even some basic features) are only available as add-ons. For example, here are just afew of the add-ons you must purchase separately:

  • Affiliate coupons
  • Custom commissions rates for specific affiliate
  • PayPal payouts
  • Social sharing links
  • Multi-level affiliates
  • Lifetime and recurring commissions

As you can see, it allows you to create avery basic affiliate program, though you’ll probably have to upgrade as you scale.

However, if you want afree affiliate marketing tool, you can use its limited free plan to get off the ground.



Post Affiliate Pro – Best SaaS Platform For Affiliate Networks

Post Affiliate Pro is aSaaS platform (rather than aWordPress plugin) that lets both ecommerce and SaaS companies create and manage affiliate programs. While it isn’t anative WordPress plugin, it offers integrations with most ecommerce platforms like Shopify, BigCommerce, Wix, Squarespace, and WooCommerce.

The downside of using aSaaS platform that only integrates with your store is that all of your datais owned by Post Affiliate Pro, meaning they could lock you out of your dataat any moment (e.g., if they raise prices or are bought by another company).

In addition, because it isn’t seamlessly integrated with your store, it won’t be able to execute tasks like automatically adding order notes to the product order in the WordPress dashboard.

Nevertheless, if offers most of the basic features you’d expect from an affiliate tracking software, including:

  • Impression tracking
  • Various affiliate link styles
  • Fraud protection
  • Direct link tracking
  • Reporting dashboard and payouts history
  • Basic commission options (by action, group, lifetime, multi-tier, etc.)

From the management perspective, it offers the following features on its most basic pricing tier:

  • Unlimited affiliates
  • Multiple currencies
  • GeoIP
  • Mass payments

Unfortunately, it blocks alot of relatively basic features behind higher pricing tiers or only offers them as add-ons. Here are just afew of those features:

  • Affiliate sale tracking codes
  • Audit log
  • Recurring/split commissions
  • Smartlinks
  • Limited tracking requests per month at each pricing tier
  • Affiliate subscriptions

So if you sell subscription based products or plan to track alot of requests, it can quickly become expensive.

Post Affiliate Pro also offers an affiliate network program that supports network owners, merchants, and affiliates.

If you’re running aSaaS business, it might be an excellent option for running your performance marketing campaigns.



FirstPromoter  – Best SaaS Platform For SaaS Companies

FirstPromoter specializes in affiliate and referral marketing for SaaS companies. So unlike other software on this list, this solution doesn’t work with ecommerce sites.

FirstPromoter comes with the basic features you need to run asuccessful affiliate program for your SaaS company like:

  • Unlimited visitors
  • PayPal payouts
  • Product SKU and plan level rewards
  • Link and coupon tracking
  • Branded promoter dashboard
  • Personal referral links
  • Email marketing automation
  • Multi links and sub-ID tracking

The downside is that it lacks some basic features. For example, fraud detection is only offered on the highest pricing tier (enterprise).

It also limits affiliates and promoters at the basic pricing tier and basic users don’t have access to one-click automated PayPal payouts.

However it does offer plenty of other helpful features.

For example, you can also set up two-sided bonuses that reward both affiliates and their referrals.



Tapfiliate – Best SaaS Platform For Companies With Limited Affiliates

Tapfiliate is aSaaS platform (rather than aWordPress plugin) that allows both ecommerce and SaaS companies to create and manage affiliate programs.

For ecommerce users, it offers integrations with most ecommerce platforms, including Shopify, BigCommerce, and WooCommerce.

Like other SaaS platforms you won’t own any of your dataand you’ll have to manage the program through their dashboard.

In addition, it locks white label customization, triggered notifications, and specialized commission settings behind higher pricing tiers.

Some of the noteworthy features that it promotes include its tiered affiliate offerings and brand asset manager, which lets you share branding and promotional materials with affiliates. It also offers unique social mediaadvertising options for affiliates.



LeadDyno  – Best SaaS Platform For Advanced Lead Tracking

LeadDyno helps ecommerce and SaaS businesses build affiliate programs with features like:

  • Affiliate marketing campaign tracking: Track orders from different marketing channels like email marketing campaigns, referral links, social mediacampaigns, paid ads, and more.
  • Marketing drip campaigns: Create drip campaigns to engage your affiliates and keep them actively promoting your products or services
  • Bulk pay affiliates: You can use its PayPal integration to pay affiliates with one click and customize payment intervals.
  • Reporting dashboard: Track your campaigns with adetailed reporting dashboard that shows you who the top performing affiliates are and drill down to individuals. You’ll also see total commissions, and real time stats for affiliates, leads, purchases, and visitors.

You can also set customized commissions like apercentage or dollar amount, one-time or recurring, and type of referral (visitors, leads, or purchases).

However, it’s more than just an affiliate tracking software. It also allows users to:

  • Affiliate recruitment email marketing automation: Use one of their pre-made email templates that lets you automatically invite people to join your affiliate program.
  • Build an affiliate website: Each affiliate who signs up for your program receives their own customized website with your branding.
  • Lead management: You can send drip sequences or add new leads to your CRM.

If you plan to offer both affiliate and referral programs for your SaaS company, LeadDyno might be agreat option.

Perhaps the biggest downside of LeadDyno is that while its initial pricing tier is relatively cheap, it severely limits unique visitor tracking. So if you’re anew business owner just starting out with little traffic, it might make sense, but it will quickly become expensive as you scale.



Impact – Best Partner Platform For Partner Relationship Automation

Impact helps businesses recruit and manage referral partners. While Impact supports traditional affiliate partners and ecommerce, it’s focused on helping SaaS brands and enterprises build contract-based relationships with influencers, agencies, and industry partners.

Impact hosts these commercial and legal contracts on its platform so that brands and partners can track their contracts without using third-party software or legal repositories.

Some of this software’s most attractive features include:

  • Cross-device tracking
  • Full-funnel reporting
  • Affiliate landing pages
  • Multiple conversion goals and reward levels
  • Customizable user dashboards
  • abuilt-in CRM to manage relationships with partners


Unfortunately, Impact does not offer pricing information and is likely more geared towards enterprise companies rather than small and medium sized businesses.


Ambassador – Best Partner Platform For Global Brands

Ambassador calls itself an all-in-one relationship marketing solution, meaning it offers solutions for affiliate, referral, influencer, and partner marketing.

So if you’re just looking for asimple affiliate marketing software, it might be overkill. However, if you want an all-in-one partner marketing solution with afocus on global expansion, it’s probably agreat option.

Diving into the product itself, it offers:

  • Branded customer portals: Add your own logo and branding to the ambassador portals.
  • Personalized landing pages: Create abranded landing page for your ambassador program that communicates your products and services.
  • Custom share links: Allow ambassadors to create their own custom share links to offer to their followers.

It also offers anumber of datainsights, including:

  • A/B testing campaigns
  • Conversion rate monitoring
  • Customized reports
  • Fraud detection

It integrates with various CRMs and Stripe, though you can also build out your own custom integrations thanks to its REST API and webhooks.



Choosing the Best Affiliate Marketing Software for Your Business

There are plenty of automated affiliate marketing software solutions available, but we found that most of them:

  • Block important features behind higher pricing tiers (e.g., advanced commission options, PayPal bulk payouts, etc.)
  • Don’t specialize in aparticular platform (e.g., doesn’t specialize in WooCommerce)
  • Offer poor user experiences (e.g., technical or complicated setup processes)

So we decided to build Solid Affiliate to be the solution to all of these problems.

Specifically, Solid Affiliate:

  • Offers all features at one basic pricing tier and offers unlimited everything (affiliates, tracking, creatives, etc.)
  • Specializes specifically in WooCommerce
  • Offers adead simple user experience thanks to the setup wizard that allows you to get up and running in less than 2 minutes. Zero technical expertise required.

We also work alongside our customers to offer more advanced customization options to fit any edge case and you’ll always receive aprompt response from ateam member.

To see for yourself how you can use Solid Affiliate to skyrocket your affiliate sales, sign up for Solid Affiliate today. If you aren’t 100% satisfied in the first 30 days, we’ll give you your money back – no questions asked.

So get your affiliate program started today!

Looking for the best affiliate plugin for WooCommerce?

Solid Affiliate is available for download without any extra premium addons or hidden fees. We offer straightforward, all-inclusive pricing.