CASE STUDY

Stio x Clique + Impact

successful affiliate program migration

Stio Enjoys a 25% Hike in Sales

THE SITUATION

An affiliate program with growing needs

Stio offers beautiful, functional products for those steeped in mountain life. The outdoor apparel aficionados partnered with Clique Affiliate in 2015 to optimize its underperforming affiliate program.

The brand’s unique direct-to-consumer business model gave them a competitive edge and increased publishers’ interest in their affiliate program. The previous affiliate network did not have the tools to match the program’s popularity. The team contended with high costs, complex program management, and limited partnership control.

The search for a new management solution required the agency to identify the challenges preventing growth in the previous affiliate network.

Pain Points

  • Clique Arrow small

    Limited reporting capabilities prevented a deeper insight into the customer’s purchase journey, contribution to non-attributed sales, and channel incrementality. Furthermore, data manipulation was time-consuming, and creating customized reports was a tedious task.  

  • Clique Arrow small

    Imprecise attribution meant the team could not accurately identify each partner’s or channel’s contribution to conversions.  

  • Clique Arrow small

    Restrictive commission terms hindered the opportunity to optimize the rewards strategy for top-performing partners. 

  • Clique Arrow small

    Unrestricted coupon codes promoted the spread and use of other digital channel codes not intended for affiliate promotion—resulting in manually reversing these sales monthly.

  • Clique Arrow small

    Outdated recruitment tools made the process of discovering new partners manual and labor-intensive.

     

The impact.com platform provided the tools, services, and features to meet Stio’s growing needs

STIO-lockup-120x60-GreenBlack

Stio is an outdoor apparel and mountain lifestyle brand based in Wyoming. The company inspires a connection with the outdoors through beautiful, functional products infused with mountain soul. Its product range—characterized by performance, quality, and versatility— equips customers for epic alpine pursuits and the quieter moments of mountain life.

Clique_Lockup

Clique Affiliate is an affiliate marketing agency working exclusively with passion and lifestyle brands. Founded in 2012, the agency creates highly profitable and tightly optimized affiliate programs for notable clients. Clique Affiliate’s success is testimony to its team’s commitment to delivering the highest quality of service backed by tried-and-true strategies and forward-thinking innovation.

SOLUTION

A management platform to drive program growth

  • 1 (2)

    Completed top-tier partner migration in 4 days and data integration within hours with Shopify

    The agency team used impact.com’s Shopify plugin for tracking and data integration. The impact.com app is a no-code plugin, meaning the team could integrate and end-to-end test without needing web development expertise. The process, which previously took several weeks on the previous network, was completed within a few hours.

    Before migration day, the impact.com support team assisted Stio’s top revenue-generating publishers with a seamless platform transition. Additionally, the team leveraged the following resources and services to facilitate an efficient, painless migration to impact.com:

  • Untitled design (4)

    A dedicated Onboard Success Manager 

  • Untitled design (4)

    PXA training sessions 

  • Untitled design (4)

    24/5 in-app chat support  

Nicole Cordingley   Alta, Utah sidecountry
Stio_Mens_Elise-Sterck
  • 1 (3)

    Gained insights into partner incrementality with the powerful Optimize reporting suite

    The team accessed impact.com’s robust Optimize reporting suite to address the lack of visibility that previously hampered them. Key reports included:  

  • Untitled design (4)

    The Contribution report gave insights into each partner’s contribution as an Introducer (first-touch), Closer (last-touch), or Influencer (other points in the conversion path).

  • Untitled design (4)

    The Leapfrogging Summary report offered a look into the final partner interactions in a conversion path within a specified time window.

  • Untitled design (4)

    The Crediting Concerns Report provided information on shopping behavior and attribution. The team optimized contracts/IOs to align with program KPIs with this data. 

  • 1 (4)

    Recruited top-tier partners, such as Outside, using automated Discovery tools

    Stio leveraged impact.com’s Discovery tool to automate a once-manually-run partner recruitment strategy. Features, such as the Extended Search, introduced large media partners and publishers, including Outside, Gear Junkie, and Active Junky. 

    Additionally, the team tapped into impact.com’s curated Recommendations to target recruitment efforts around holidays and special events, like Father’s Day and Memorial Day—maximizing audience reach. 

  • 1 (5)

    Regulated the spread and use of coupon codes with innovative technology 

    The Match Expression Tool Regex ensured media partners received credit for all referrals using their codes. At the same time, the Promo Codes Exception list combated the spreading of exclusive coupon codes on other websites. Additionally, the team used Paid Search Monitoring to police trademarked keywords and Stio coupon violations. 

  • 1 (6)

    Optimized the compensation strategy with tailor-made commission terms

    Innovative and flexible commission options by impact.com allowed the team to optimize the partner rewards strategy. 

  • Untitled design (4)

    The Switch Contract functionality rewarded publishers providing featured coverage with limited-time commission increases. 

  • Untitled design (4)

    The Referral SharedID tool saved money on unwarranted commission payouts. The team could set rules preventing commission when a specific coupon site within the sub-affiliate network refers an order.

  • Untitled design (4)

    The Group-Based Commission model helped create IOs based on the publisher’s business model. The team could apply program terms of service, restricted product SKUs, and restricted coupon codes to IOs. 

Stio_Women_Gabe-Rogel

In Their Words

“impact.com has leveled up our affiliate program in a few areas. We’ve reduced costs, streamlined program management, and improved partnership control. The platform’s everyday usability is a timesaver by simplifying data manipulation, enabling faster data pulls, and providing intuitive reporting templates for one-off needs.”

Cole Soldwisch
Performance Marketing Channel Manager
Stio

"Our complex strategy for the Stio affiliate program required a technology platform that could deliver granular reporting, actionable attribution, new partnership discovery, customizable commissioning, and tracking we could trust. impact.com not only delivered but exceeded our expectations. The impact.com team has supported us from the beginning, providing agency support, training, certification courses, and help docs to help deliver our vision for the Stio program. We’re thrilled with the results and partnership!"

Brian Boyd
Owner
Clique Affiliate

OUTCOME

An platform that cut costs and facilitated steady growth

Increase In Sales
%
Drop In Commission Expenses
%
Decrease In Total Expenses
%

Sales Growth + Cost Reduction

After migrating to impact.com, Stio implemented a highly effective, cost-saving strategy that facilitates affiliate program growth. The team accessed the right tools to streamline program management and the control to automate the partnership life cycle stages. The outdoor apparel brand saw significant improvements across key metrics:

25% increase in sales year-over-year

0%

7.5% decrease in total program expense

0%

8% reduction in commission expense

0%

1.4% drop in average cost percent of revenue

0%

10% lower action cost reduced

0%

$2 rise in ROAS

$0

Ready To Take Your Program To The Next Level?