4 Ways Affiliate Marketers Can Prepare for the Holiday Shopping Season

Kristen IndiharAffiliate Marketing

How Affiliate Marketers Can Prep For Holidays

If you’re an affiliate marketer, it’s easy to get overwhelmed with preparing for the holiday season. 

To ensure you enjoy the magic of the season, we created a cheat sheet on how to adjust your marketing strategy for the rest of the year. We promise by the end you’ll be in the holiday spirit and out of the holiday stress.

How Affiliate Marketers Can Prep for the Holiday Shopping Season

 1. Be Aware of Important Dates

First things first, add these dates to your calendar to determine how you’re going to adjust your Q4 marketing strategies for these major holidays:

Single’s Day: Thursday, November 11th:

What started as a Chinese holiday in the ’90s, single people celebrate by buying themselves something nice.

Pre-Thanksgiving: Before Thursday, November 25th: 

Although 38% of holiday shoppers start in October, another 23% start purchasing gifts before Cyber Week. Use this opportunity to reach customers before the competition.

Cyber 5: Thursday, November 25th – Monday, November 29th:

It’s crucial to have a sound strategy in place for these five days. Rotate various discounts each day, and position your biggest deals on Black Friday and Cyber Monday.

Giving Tuesday: Tuesday, November 20th:

Giving Tuesday takes place on the Tuesday after Thanksgiving each year and encourages people to give back. Promote your brand by having your company get involved.

Green Monday: Monday, December 13th:

eBay created Green Monday which is considered the biggest online shopping day in December. It’s the second-biggest online shopping event of the season after Cyber Monday.

Super Saturday: Saturday, December 18th:

Also known as “Panic Saturday,” this is the last Saturday before Christmas Eve when shoppers hurry to finish their list. Use this time to promote rush shipping.

Boxing Day: Sunday, December 26th:

An official public holiday in the UK, Boxing day is celebrated with sporting events, and yes, even more shopping.


Many brands continue to push sales as they clear out inventory and prepare new products for the post-holiday season.

2. Know What to Offer and When

People expect more savings this time of year, but you don’t have to bend over backward to get the sale. Create a campaign using these strategies to make your customers happy without losing revenue:


Sales get competitive this time of year, and if you’re not offering a deal you could lose conversions. This doesn’t mean you have to sell everything at half-off. Offer incentives in exchange for shoppers’ emails so you have new-to-file leads after the holidays.

Gift With Purchase:

Shoppers love hearing “free” when they hunt for presents. Offering a gift with purchase can lead to a 44% higher conversion rate. Go through your inventory and find seasonal products you can utilize.

Free Shipping:

If it’s not in your budget to offer everyone free shipping, create a promotion where shoppers need to meet a threshold to get free shipping. Calculate what they need to spend to make it worthwhile for your business.

Rush Shipping:

We’ve all been those last-minute shoppers. Rush shipping easily converts more shoppers by easing the stress of packages arriving on time.

3. Leverage Technology Partners

To prepare for holiday traffic, it’s important to review your affiliate program and optimize your affiliate marketing strategies. Consider using a technology partner like UpSellit that will ease your workload and help you brainstorm new ways to engage customers when it matters most.

Adapt & Optimize Conversion Strategies

Ask yourself key questions to narrow down what needs to change to accomplish your goals. Are you targeting a new audience? What are they expecting? What seasonal promotions will you offer to convert sales?

Communicate with your technology partner to align your seasonal marketing strategies and have all your bases covered. Here’s a list of strategy suggestions that are especially relevant this time of year: 

Use Urgency Tactics:

Using a countdown timer or low stock alerts can help increase sales by 60%. If shoppers know a deal is only around for a limited time, they’re more likely to convert.

Stay Top of Mind With Remarketing:

To keep shoppers organized, send them personalized emails. Remind shoppers of shipping deadlines, and tie in back-in-stock notifications so they can cross more off their list. They’ll be receiving a lot of seasonal emails, so make sure yours stands out. 

Utilize Shopper’s Wishlists:

It’s easy for shoppers to get lost as they browse through hundreds of products and services online. Save their cart and create a wishlist to remind them to come back to your website. 

Play Into Seasonal Marketing:

People want to feel in the holiday spirit! Create a holiday shopping experience on your page and emails with festive designs and gamification.

4. Align Your Affiliates

Once you’ve mapped out a plan, communicate to your affiliates with plenty of time to make sure they have everything they need. Give them updated marketing materials, fill them in on promotions, and provide assets for social media to promote your brand. 

It’s also important to pick and choose which affiliates are best to utilize depending on their role in your program. You can even consider increasing what affiliates can earn. Some advertisers offer a higher commission rate for the season to incentivize their partners. Use your affiliate program to your advantage, and network with your contacts to see where you can extend reach this season.

Time to Plan!

You’re officially ready to get in the holiday spirit! We promised we would leave you feeling at ease, so you can return to singing carols and planning your own holiday parties. You have all the tools you need to succeed this holiday season.

Want More Holiday Insights?

We know how important this time of year is for brands. If you’re still hungry for ideas and insights you can Contact Us, or check out our holiday shopping infographic to brainstorm even more winning ideas for your team.

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