SiteGround Affiliate Program is Closing in India: All Details

I’ve been a Siteground affiliate for two and a half years now.

I’ve made well over $4000 by promoting their shared and WordPress managed hosting services.

Siteground has been my go-to choice for anyone willing to start a blog. I myself, have a Siteground shared hosting account.

Recently, I received an email from Siteground’s affiliate team. Which informed Siteground is suspending affiliate operation in India and low performing regions like it.

It says:

We would like to inform you that sadly, we’ve decided to discontinue the Affiliate program for your region and we will permanently suspend your SiteGround affiliate account on November 5, 2020.

Update: The Siteground affiliate program has finally closed for Indians. You can not register as an affiliate with an Indian address.

Why close operations in your region?

Taking this decision was not easy for us as we have many loyal affiliates like you who have partnered with us for years. Unfortunately, due to a combination of poor performance indicators and the growing regulatory complexities in some regions, it becomes ineffective to support the program there.

Poor performance indicators

The affiliate relationship is a pay-for-performance model, where we pay for every sale we generate through our affiliate partners.

The commission rates typical for the hosting industry, which we offer to our partners, are among the highest out there and traditionally they exceed the value of the initial sale.

This is why we closely monitor KPIs such as referred accounts’ lifetime span and value and renewal rates, which determine our ability to secure a fair revenue share for our partners and the long-term sustainability of the program.

Unfortunately, our latest analysis indicates that overall, the sales coming from your region have deteriorating KPIs, including among others alarmingly low renewal rates, higher cancellation rate than program averages, and short life span of the referred accounts.

Regulatory and tax complexities

Another negative trend that we have been monitoring in your region and several others is the heavier regulations and growing tax complexities that impose an additional financial and bureaucratic burden on the program.

All these factors impose a growing financial risk for us and we can no longer guarantee the sustainability of the program in the long run.

That is why we have taken the hard decision to discontinue operations in your region and several others.

What does this mean for you?

  • In 14 days time we will suspend your affiliate account which means that you no longer will be able to log into your Affiliate area. If you are a SiteGround client as well, you will still be able to access the User Area but you will no longer have access to its Affiliate section.
  • Your outstanding affiliate sales, accumulated prior to the account suspension, will be processed as per our standard terms and conditions. All approved commissions will be duly paid out to you. No commission will be due for sales generated after the suspension date.
  • We kindly ask you to remove all SiteGround-related information, including banners, logos, reviews, and links from your website prior to November 5, 2020, to prevent generating new affiliate sales and violating the SiteGround Affiliate ToS. As per section 9 of our ToS, we revoke your right to use our trademark and other brand items.

Finally, we would like to say a big thank you for partnering with us and recommending SiteGround! We wish you lots of success with your initiatives in the future!

The SiteGround Team

My Thoughts on The Siteground Suspending Affiliate Program in India

I’d love to see the KPI data. It’s hard to believe affiliates from India have a high churn rate.

Based on my personal experience, my referrals to Siteground have a 92% retention rate. In the previous quarters, I’ve referred 21 customers and only 1 of them canceled. That too was a cloud hosting customer.

My conversion rate is about 8% on average, and on good days way above 15%.

Siteground doesn’t have any coupons to offer a free trial. Which means it can’t be that coupon sites are sending low-quality leads.

This year in June, Siteground increased its pricing across all plans. It’s a huge bump.

Most beginners will compare Siteground to BlueHost and Hostgator, at least for a while. And when they see Siteground priced at almost double, they surely would not make a purchase.

Not to mention the ridiculous renewal rates. The initial pricing of Siteground’s basic hosting plan is $6.99/month. But when you renew it after the first term is over, the pricing becomes $14.99, which is more than double the initial hosting price.

With hundreds of web hosting options, it’s easy to guess not many people stick to Siteground once their first invoice term is over.

This isn’t the Indian’s fault. It’s simply Siteground decided to increase pricing and left the market it dominated. Their pricing structure needs to be fixed.

Blaming Indian affiliates is a step, that sounds like a desperate move to make up for the losses. Which isn’t a good thing.

My affiliate sales fell drastically after the price change, and it was inevitable. It wasn’t a huge contributor to my monthly income, in fact, it isn’t even 5% of my quarterly affiliate revenue.

So this suspension isn’t a huge issue. I’ll still recommend Siteground, as long as they have their reputation live up to their performance.

Siteground is an amazing web hosting service. Their support is second to none among shared hosting providers.

I’d like to understand what tax implications were put on Siteground in terms of affiliate commissions and payouts. This could be a significant factor.

What are your thoughts on Siteground closing their affiliate program in India? 

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  1. Rufat Bayram says:

    You and all Indians apparently don’t understand anything and you are greedy and exploiting all the affiliate programs. Yes, your KPI is low, not only with SiteGround but probably with all hosting companies. You are not willing to pay for the service you like and the customers you recommend the service to buy for 1 year and never renew, they just change hosting to something more affordable and then complain about service quality? Why did you change your last provider if it was working well for you? I will tell you why, because you are a cheapskate and you don’t value the service you are using, not paying its ACTUAL PRICE! Only jumping from discount to discount. Hosting companies are at a loss when they pay affiliate commissions and their customers don’t renew. Sooner or later, every hosting company will follow SiteGround’s lead and no one will work with you guys from India. Go and use some local $1 hosting service, because India’s KPI is one of the worst in the world for sure!

    1. Well, I’m actually paying $350 to Kinsta, which is about $100 extra from WPX – leaving the benefits I had with WPX such as extra website hosting and quick support. Leave the overage charges, extra money to Gsuite and extra hosting cost for my other websites.

      As for the KPI, we don’t have the raw data. My conversion rates are well over 27%. But the retention rate is undiscolsed.

      As far as I see, the industry is dominated by Indian writers and webmasters, and India is a prominent source of traffic for most websites.

      Peace ✌🏻

  2. Thanks for this information, I wasn’t aware of this. It is a piece of bad news for an Indian affiliate marketer.

  3. Sanjeev P says:

    The affiliate marketer has kept his part of the bargain by bringing in a paid customer. If SiteGround is unable to retain that customer or get them to renew, then it is as much their fault as anybody else’s. Doubling the charges at the time of renewal is not a smart strategy at all unless you are a monopoly. One can hardly blame the customer for moving away to others who are offering a similar or better service at a better price point. I think SiteGround is making a mistake as India is where the demand is. But then, it is their business and their decision. They are not the only service provider in the market.

    1. Fair point – the retention rate is largely dependent on the merchant’s customer onboard operation. If your after-sales experience is weak, nothing will help.

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