VM Affiliate

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VM Affiliate is an affiliate tracking system which allows VirtueMart store owners to easily deploy a full-fledged affiliate program. It is ridiculously easy to install, configure and use, has all the features required of such software, and runs by itself - just deploy it and let it make you money.


What it is

VM Affiliate is a complete affiliate marketing solution designed to help online merchants that run their shops using VirtueMart (and of course, Joomla!™) increase their profits. Affiliate marketing has proven itself as one of today's best marketing methods, both online and offline. So, if you decide to give affiliate marketing a shot, and run your own affiliate program, VM Affiliate does just that.

What it does

VM Affiliate is the software you need to track and commission visits and sales referred by your affiliates. Of course, VMA does way more than that. First of all, it installs via the standard Joomla!™ installer, in a few clicks. After these few clicks, your affiliate program is already published, enabled, and ready to accept and track affiliates, offering them a very nice and friendly interface to manage and monitor their affiliate accounts. On the other end, you, as a merchant, get access to a new menu in VirtueMart's menu bar which allows you to manage and control all aspects of the affiliate program.

Once you have installed VMA and spent some 10 minutes setting your desired commission rates, and deciding on the payout methods you wish to offer your affiliates, you're ready to go. VM Affiliate automatically generates advertising material from your published products and categories, so your affiliates can get to work right away. Optionally, you can also add some pretty banners and text ads.

From this moment on, VM Affiliate takes care of everything:

  • automatically accepts affiliate registrations (if so set)
  • automatically provides affiliates with advertising material
  • automatically tracks affiliate-referred visits and sales
  • automatically commissions affiliates for finalized sales
  • automatically de-commissions affiliates for cancelled sales
This way, you can rest assured you only pay your affiliates exactly what they worth. So, the only thing you need to do is exactly this: pay your affiliates on a monthly basis. VM Affiliate takes care of the rest.


The current version of VM Affiliate is 4.5, and it's compatible with Joomla!™ 1.5, 1.6, 1.7, 2.5 and VirtueMart 1.1 and 2.0.

The code is MVC, therefore very easy to modify to your needs, should you need it. Also, the layout can easily be adjusted via template overrides and CSS files.

VM Affiliate comes in 19 languages: English, French, German, Russian, Italian, Spanish, Portuguese, Dutch, Hungarian, Norwegian, Swedish, Danish, Greek, Romanian, Persian, Malaysian, Hebrew, Croatian and Serbian. Should you need another, the standard INI files are very easy to edit, and contain only 300 lines/1330 words.

What you get

Purchasing VMA gets you:

  • the product itself, with full source code
  • 14 language packs
  • a very comprehensive User Manual
  • the right to use it on all of the websites you own
  • free lifetime updates for any future version
  • free lifetime support via support tickets, forum, e-mail, and phone

Version History (January 18, 2012)

  • added native compatibility with Joomla! 1.7, 2.5 and VirtueMart 2.0

4.5 (July 5, 2011)

  • completely re-thought and re-developed from scratch
  • very clear, organized code, following all latest coding standards; all code has become MVC, thus easily customizable; layout is as well, easily customizable through template overrides
  • absolutely all core files modifications were removed; as of version 4.5, VM Affiliate does not modify any system file, beit Joomla! or VirtueMart; VM Affiliate still integrates seamlessly with VirtueMart (as in previous versions), by using a smart helper plugin
  • tracking is now bulletproof, thanks to the highly advanced helper/tracking plugin, which ensures perfect tracking, out-of-the-box
  • installation package is now a standard package installable via Joomla!'s backend installer, in 2 clicks
  • language files are now, as well, standard Joomla! INI language files, packed in standard installable packages
  • dozens of bugs were fixed (or better put, not implemented again)
  • all frontend now validates to the W3C XHTML Strict standards, as well as all generated advertising material
  • added offline tracking functionality; offline affiliates and associated advertising can now be tracked with VM Affiliate;
  • added coupon based tracking; a form of offline tracking, which allows affiliates to hand out their usernames as discount coupons, which are automatically tracked by VM Affiliate, while also providing discounts for the customers that use them
  • Product Ads now display prices including taxes, the way VirtueMart does
  • Product Ads now display the discounted prices the way VirtueMart does
  • commissions are no calculated after any discounts have been deducted from the order subtotal
  • the E-mail Campaign feature now supports HTML e-mails, allowing affiliates to place actual banners in their e-mails
  • the backend mass e-mailing feature, to affiliates, now also supports HTML e-mails
  • added support for GIF, animated GIF and SWF (Flash) banners
  • banners have been moved to a frontend folder
  • added standard Affiliate Program Terms text, upon installation, that automatically includes your website information
  • all advertising material is now previewed in modal boxes
  • added "Affiliates" button in VirtueMart's backend control panel, for easier access to the affiliates administration section
  • added protection against situations where affiliate links rank higher on search engines than your own website; now, referral visits that come directly from search engines are not tracked
  • all incoming referral visits are now 301 redirected, for better SEO performance, and to avoid penalty for duplicate content
  • added a very comprehensive, illustrated PDF User Manual that covers installation/uninstallation, configuration and usage of VM Affiliate
  • many other minor additions and bug fixes

4.0 (September 24, 2008)

  • added compatibility with Joomla! 1.5.x
  • added new tracking module, which ensures tracking throughout the Joomla! website, not just VirtueMart
  • completely re-designed affiliate panel, with better style and functionality
  • added e-mail campaign feature, so affiliates can advertise the website, via e-mail, directly from the affiliate panel
  • added e-mail notifications for events such as new affiliate registration, sale made by affiliates, etc.
  • added support for Text Ads; administrators can now set up text ads, that appear in the affiliate panel
  • added Category Ads; along with existing Product Ads, affiliates can now also easily get ads, with pictures, that link to product categories
  • added Statistics, in both frontend and backend, in the form of charts, for traffic and sales performance
  • banners and text ads are now organized into size groups, which you can easily define
  • many more minor additions and bug fixes

3.0 (February 11, 2008)

  • added installation script
  • added User Manual
  • added Search function on Link Calculator
  • added Pagination on Link Calculator
  • added complete payment method manager (disable, enable, remove and add payment methods)
  • added about page, plus links to VMA F.A.Q., Forum, User Manual
  • added ability to set Affiliate Program Terms, to which affiliates must agree upon registration (if so set)
  • added Link Manager (ability to publish/unpublish product links that appear in the Link Calculator)
  • added Banner functionality (Banner Manager in the backend for uploading/managing banners & banners tab in the frontend where affiliates can copy their banner codes)
  • added Multi-Tier functionality (administrator can set up commissions from up to 5 affiliate levels)
  • added automated PayPal payment with IPN notification
  • added Initial Bonus setting (affiliates can receive an initial deposit upon registration)
  • added Affiliate Program page with informations about the affiliate program
  • added Traffic Log in the backend
  • added Traffic Log, Sales Log and Payment History in the frontend
  • added Statistics in the backend
  • filtered credited and displayed orders by whether they are confirmed or not (only confirmed orders are now credited/displayed)
  • ability for VMA users to use their own language files (by manually uploading language files)
  • currency now uses shop's settings (symbol, position, decimal sign, etc.)
  • completely redesigned the Link Calculator (see manual for changes)
  • redesigned the Settings page using tabs
  • moved the tracking code from Joomla! to VirtueMart (the code is now Joomla!-independent)
  • reduced the number of modified VirtueMart core files (only two VM files are now very briefly modified)
  • integrated the payment popup as a backend page
  • optimized ALL code (more compact code, faster and prefix-independent queries, added comments)
  • many other small bug fixes and improvements

2.6 (August 25, 2007)

  • added internationalization support
  • redesigned the Affiliate Area using tabs
  • fixed compatibility issues with IE (png transparency, etc.)
  • fixed a couple of other medium severity bugs
  • fixed logout issue with SEO enabled
  • fixed the link calculator (unpublished products don't show anymore)
  • fixed the link feed string setting
  • removed coupon support (too hacky)

2.5 (April 3, 2007)

  • added sign up feature
  • added link calculator on frontend
  • added general sales page
  • added MD5 encryption for passwords in the database
  • added settings page with various settings
  • added sale registering for PayPal IPN
  • added ability to syncronize Joomla! logins with affiliate logins
  • added session cookies for logins
  • added ability to enable or disable affiliates
  • added 'Remember Me' cookie on login
  • added 'Lost Password' option for affiliates
  • fixed multi-sale registering
  • fixed e-mail function
  • fixed search functions
  • fixed many other minor bugs

2.1 (December 30, 2006)

  • added individual commission rates
  • added ability to assign coupons to affiliates and track them
  • fixed some minor bugs

2.0 (December 1, 2006)

  • added sales information
  • added payment option
  • added payment log
  • added reset option
  • added commission rates settings
  • added frontend for affiliates
  • fixed the top buttons
  • fixed many other minor bugs
  • improved the affiliate listing

1.0 (September 5, 2006)

  • first version


Here are VM Affiliate's most important current features:

  • Online tracking – VM Affiliate automatically detects the affiliate ID from incoming links, and tracks referral visits and orders
  • Offline tracking – VM Affiliate supports tracking of users referred through offline advertising efforts, such as printed material. The user can type the username of the referrer, or select his name from a list
  • Coupon-based tracking – Your affiliates' usernames can become discount coupon codes which can be tracked. Thus, an affiliate can hand out the coupon to a person, which gains a discount, while the affiliate earns a commission
  • Multi-tier tracking – Commonly referred to as MLM – Multi-Level Marketing enables your affiliates to refer other affiliates, which leads to more marketing, thus greater profits, for both the merchant and the affiliate! VM Affiliate can track and commission up to 5 tier/levels
  • Automatic commissioning – VM Affiliate automatically assigns the corresponding commissions to the corresponding affiliates, only if the order is finalized (confirmed or shipped). Likewise, if a commission is given to the affiliate, but then the order is cancelled, the commission will be deducted from the affiliate's balance
  • Affiliate Panel – VM Affiliate provides a complete affiliate panel for affiliates, where they can see their earnings, visits, orders, have access to advertising material, monitor their referred traffic, conduct an e-mail campaign, or update their personal information
  • Affiliate Management – Goes without saying that you have full control over your affiliates. You can add, remove, edit, enable or disable them, and edit their preferences
  • Advertising Material – VM Affiliate allows you to upload banners (either images, animated GIFs or flash SWF files), create text ads (either normal text or HTML), or manage the automatically generated product and category ads
  • Affiliate Program Configuration – Without any bloated settings, you can specify key preferences of your affiliate program, regarding tracking, registration, payments, and so on
  • Default Terms & Conditions – Don't feel like writing a huge terms & conditions text? Don't worry! VM Affiliate provides such a text by default, automatically customized using your site's name and address. So you can just review it and make sure it meets your needs
  • Payout Method Management – You can add or modify existing payment methods that you like to offer to your affiliates. You can pay them by PayPal (semi-automatic), Check, Bank Transfer, or you can easily add your own payout methods, or edit existing ones
  • Logs & Statistics – Easily monitor, review and filter through traffic, sales, payments, or affiliate program's performance. VM Affiliate logs and provides access to all this information
  • MVC Framework – Following Joomla!™'s development standards, VM Affiliate uses the MVC architecture for the frontend Affiliate Panel, which enables you to easily modify the layout of your affiliates' panel, and preserve this layout, even if you update VM Affiliate in the future
  • Multi-language – At the moment, VM Affiliate is available in 19 languages. Need another? VM Affiliate uses standard INI files, which are very easily translatable. Only 300 lines, or 1330 words
  • Hack-free – VM Affiliate achieves all the tracking and integration without modifying a single VirtueMart file, and without requiring any custom code. The smart tracking plugin takes care of everything


Backend: Affiliate Administration

VM Affiliate 4.5
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