Chronicling my experiences with ruby on rails, web application development/management.

Saturday, March 14, 2009

Creating a Rails Plugin - thoughts behind Active_Affiliate

I'm about to launch a new whizbang plugin. Really excited about it as i think it will add something to the Rails community and show that i have learned SOMETHING over these last 18 months.

I just wanted to document the thought process for this plugin, without talking about the code. Hopefully you find it interesting, or even helpful

Thought Process

I started with the premise that if you run a successful web app, that charges a membership/account fee, you will need some way to bring in new customers. Affiliate programs are a way to leverage the Internet Marketing initiative and your app.

There really are just two main players in the affiliate space, commission junction and Linkshare. There isn't anything wrong with these programs and chances are you'll need them too, but hosting your own affiliate program and managing it how you want, was a dream i wanted to fulfill.

Since i code in rails, and there was no solution, i created one. Here are some of the features.

  • Affiliate Signup through a route /affiliates

  • Affiliates get their own unique code

  • Primitive banner ad generator that will populate link with their code

  • Affiliate code tracking put in session variables, and saved on customer purchase, through your checkout/signup sheet.

  • Currently, paypal id's are needed so the user can get paid.

  • Reporting for both the Affiliates and App Management.

I'll be updating active_affiliate on github as features are implemented.

No comments:

Post a Comment