Surfmyads Rides the Waves of Change into the Next Affiliate Phase
May 20, 2022
Coupon publishers have been a major player in the affiliate ecosystem since the dawn of the apply coupon button. So how does a coupon site stay top of mind when it comes to not only coupons, but also cashback, content, search monitoring, and important initiatives like sustainability? Surfmyads has managed to do just that by launching numerous products and brand initiatives over the last few years that have helped them evolve into an exemplary and versatile partner.
We caught up with Kendyl Young, Senior Account Manager at Surfmyads to learn more about what's new with the team and how they're adapting to a changing channel and a whole new world of marketing.
Kendyl Young, Senior Account Manager, Surfmyads
CJ: Tell us a little about Surfmyads.
Kendyl: Surfmyads.com, Inc. was founded in 2006, making us one of the original pioneers of the digital coupon landscape with our US-focused brand Promocodes.com and our CA brand Coupons.ca. In fact, our UK voucher site Codes.co.uk, was one of the first UK coupon sites ever established by an American company.
The Surfmyads group has now expanded into 12 markets, each a unique individual brand catering exclusively to the users and merchants of that region. At its core, Surfmyads is focused on helping users make the most out of their purchases and discover new brands, as well as helping merchants tap into new audiences.
CJ: What problems does your business solve?
Kendyl: The foundation of Surfmyads will always be to promote the best deals and help our customers gain the maximum benefits from their purchases via coupons and cashback. With current events driving up inflation, gas prices, and the increasing costs of basic goods and services, customers are turning to shopping online and hunting for the best deals when even the slightest of discounts or cashback can make a difference.
CJ: How has your business model evolved and changed over time?
Kendyl: Going on 20 years in the coupon space, we’ve perfected our business model and are constantly evolving with our customers' needs and interests. In today’s climate, coupon and cashback search volumes are growing rapidly across all verticals. More users than ever are shifting from traditional brick and mortar to shopping online, but most importantly today's customers are shopping with their hearts in addition to their wallets. Sustainability and charitable actions are values cherished by all of us in the Surfmyads family, which is why we’ve worked hard on initiatives that uplift our partners who are actively making a difference in the world. Additionally, we've been super busy with launches! In the last year alone Surfmyads has launched our Premium Cashback program, a Toolbar Extension, Sustainability Initiative, Coupons that Care Initiative, and our affordable Search Monitoring tool, Evet Guard.
CJ: Who’s your audience? What do they care about and what’s their shopping behavior like?
Kendyl: Our audience knows exactly what they’re looking for. They’re repeat customers because they know that Surfmyads is a dependable source for the best and most up-to-date deals on all of their favorite brands. As consumer behavior has been rapidly evolving, today’s customers are highly informed and loyal to brands that align with their shared interests and values. Surfmyads is deeply devoted to shining a spotlight on our partners that have committed to—quite simply—making the world a better place. This is one of the driving reasons we launched our Coupons That Care and Coupons from Sustainable Brands initiatives in 2021, and the increased conversion rates speak for themselves.
CJ: Last time we spoke in 2018 it was about global expansion efforts. What are the markets that Surfmyads is operating in these days?
Kendyl: Surfmyads has expanded globally since 2018 and we're now thriving across 12 country markets. We also have several countries in the pipeline as we continue our growth internationally! Here’s the full list of our current international brands. As part of our global expansion, Surfmyads is a 100% remote company with team members stationed all over the world and covering every timezone. This sets us apart from other coupon sites as we have individual brands and account managers catering locally to their respective countries.
While Promocodes.com continues to lead as one of the most recognized and credible coupon sites in the US market, we’ve also seen tremendous growth in the UK. Codes.co.uk is well-established and quickly becoming one of the most prominent voucher sites across the entire UK market as we’re seeing over 2x YOY merchant revenue growth. Canada (Coupons.ca) and Australia (Discountcode.com) are also expanding rapidly and we're very eager to connect with new partners that cater and ship to these markets!
CJ: What are some unique trends you’ve been seeing in the markets you currently operate?
Kendyl: Increased interest in sustainability is the number one trend we’re seeing across all industries. Customers care about where and how their products are being manufactured. It’s absolutely crucial for brands to take this into consideration when making decisions from the top down. The Coupons from Sustainable Brands section of our US homepage is the perfect opportunity for brands to call attention to their eco-friendly efforts and attract new customers that are looking for sustainable brands to shop with.
Further, customers are seeking transparency. The average consumer wants to know not only where and how a product is made, but also which companies are benefiting from their purchases. This is why Surfmyads always includes a disclaimer on the merchant pages with which we have an affiliate partnership and are earning commissions.
CJ: Let's talk about the features and categories you've launched recently. Can you tell us more about them and why you’ve decided to focus on these areas?
Kendyl: Last year we launched our Premium Cashback program and I encourage all of our current and future partners to join. In light of current events, more customers are searching for cashback opportunities exemplified by our new user signups which are exceeding 500 per day. The cashback launch has lifted conversion rates across all of our verticals and for a limited time, we’re offering up to 80% of our CPA back to the consumer.
Again, our Coupons from Sustainable Brands initiative is dedicated exclusively to our eco-friendly partners. It’s a content piece written by our editors to showcase green efforts and projects from our advertisers. Last but not least, our Coupons That Care initiative is another place where we highlight brands doing their part to uplift their communities—including everything from tackling social justice issues, working with local charities, or making an impact on causes they care about.
CJ: What trends do you see arising within affiliate or the digital space and how are you handling them?
Kendyl: It’s not enough to exist solely as a coupon collective so Surfmyads created our sister company Evet Guard to meet the needs of our partners in unprecedented ways. The affiliate industry is becoming increasingly competitive and as a result, some publishers have turned to debatable practices like unauthorized brand bidding. Concern over illegal bidding is growing as brands are struggling to manually monitor TM+ program compliance. Evet Guard is a simple, automated solution to the problem and helps to bring more transparency to the industry.
Our search monitoring application pricing starts at $49/month and protects partners from unauthorized TM+ bidding for a cleaner, fairer search space.
CJ: Where do you see the future of digital media?
Kendyl: With the continuous rise of inflation, consumers are going to become even more price-conscious and diligent in their searches for coupons and other ways to save money. Historically speaking, periods of recession or high inflation drive strong traffic to savings websites and it’s going to become essential for retailers to work closely with trusted and established coupon partners. Brands will need to carefully reevaluate where their marketing budgets are being allocated and adjust their strategies toward the most cost-effective solutions. This will shift attention away from traditional media outlets and towards the affiliate channel, where retailers have a guaranteed ROI and only pay publishers based on actual sales.
We’re also seeing an increase in new agencies and affiliates entering the space. The competition benefits all of us as we see more and more first-time retailers entering the affiliate channel. Growing investments in the affiliate channel will inevitably lead to more publishers seeking to take advantage of and test the boundaries of retailers' T & Cs. Compliance will become more difficult to police and tools like Evet Guard will be a necessity for retailers, agencies, and networks to protect their trademarks.
CJ: Any success stories you’d like to highlight?
Kendyl: Our partner CupShe is extremely satisfied with their Event Guart subscription. Cupshe was able to quickly and easily clean up their ad space from unauthorized bidding and get publishers in line with their Trademark T & Cs. In addition to the launch of cashback and content initiatives, this year we have overhauled our SEO and completely updated our website. The new features and design have improved user experience and we’ve seen a dramatic increase in CTR and CR. In 2021 we also added several new and experienced team members to the Surfmyads family that have been successfully expanding partnerships and driving growth in new markets.