Online Affiliated Marketing

Online Affiliate Marketing is a revenue sharing venture between a website owner and an online merchant. The website owner will place advertisements on his websites to either help sell the merchant’s products or to send potential customers to the merchant’s website, all in exchange for a share of the profits.

Affiliate Marketing Program
An affiliate marketing program is sometimes called an affiliate program, but also may be referred to as a pay-for-performance program or an associate program. An affiliate program is a marketing tool for the e-business that operates it, called merchant or advertiser and a source of revenue for the e-business that participates in it, called an affiliate or associate or publisher.

There are three ways to earn money through affiliate marketing:
1) Pay per Click or Cost-per-click affiliate programs: Every time a potential customer leaves the affiliate website by “clicking” on the link leading to the merchant’s website, a certain amount of money is deposited in the affiliate’s account. This amount can be pennies or dollars depending on the product and amount of the commission.
2) Pay per Lead or Cost-per-lead affiliate programs: The merchant pays the affiliate a set fee for each visitor who clicks through and takes and action at the merchant’s site, such as completing an online survey, registering at the site, or opting-in to receive e-mail.
3) Pay per Sale or Cost-per-sale affiliate programs: Every time a sale is made as a result of advertising on the affiliate’s website, a percentage, or commission, is deposited into the affiliate’s account.

The Amazon Story
The world’s biggest bookstore has one of the most successful examples of an affiliate program (called their associate program). Amazon now has well over 1 million affiliates! That is over 1 million websites actively promoting their products every single second of every single day. Amazon generates over 40% of its revenue through its affiliates program. That is over $3 billion in revenue every single year! As another (somewhat humble by comparison) example, Zeald generates over 50% of its revenue using its own unique affiliates program. Admittedly, not quite billions of dollars but that is definitely millions of dollars of revenue every single year.

Thousands of diverse e-businesses operate affiliate programs: E.g. barnes&nobale, dell,1-800-flowers, rackspace managed hosting etc.

Affiliate Programs as a Marketing Tool
The two major Advantages to merchant
1. Tie marketing effort directly to a lead or sales.
2. The merchant pays only for results.
The two major Advantages to affiliate
1. Additional source of revenue for affiliate who also sells products/services
2. Primary source of revenue for affiliate who offers entertainment or information
Two Approaches to Operating a Successful Affiliate Marketing
1. Acquire a huge and affiliate membership. e.g. The Amazon associates programs have over 1 million members as diverse as:
– RVPart – Sells parts for recreational vehicles and motor homes.
– Dilbert – Site for view cartoons, play games, send electronic greeting cards etc
– Books for Managers – Site for business reviews and lists of the currant top-selling business-related books provided by Business week, The New York Times, the Wall Street Journal, USA Today, and other publications.
– HaperCollins – Its site to promote its authors and their books. However, like many book publishers. HaperCollins sells its books through bookstores and not directly to the public.
2. Acquire a smaller number of highly effective affiliates that have a high volume of website traffic and offer web page content, products and services that are directly related to the merchant’s products and services.

Affiliate Programs as a Revenue Source
Participating in an affiliate program and then getting the most out of your participation involves:
– Selecting the appropriate merchant and affiliate program for your e-business
– Understand the terms of the affiliate agreement
– Add custom links to merchant’s site from affiliate Web pages
– Build traffic at affiliate site to increase click-troughs to merchant site.

Top 10 Tips for Choosing the Affiliate Program That Is Right for You
1. You have to identify a product or service for which there is a need. The product should be such that you would love and enjoy promoting it. You could start by searching for “Affiliate Programs” in the Search Engines.
2. The product or service should be relevant to your website.
3. It is always wise to join an affiliate program that is long standing, safe and secure and has a good reputation in the Internet world. This can be easily verified from the Better Business Bureau or other similar organizations. Visits to Forums and Discussion Groups will also provide you with a lot of useful information.
4. Most affiliate program providers provide a commission of 5% to 50%. The commission you earn for the sale of a product is your main income. So while choosing an affiliate program you should study the commission paid out and decide on a program that pays at least 35% for you to run your business successfully.
5. There should be a proper tracking system in place to record all the clicks and sales made through the text links and banners placed on your website, e-mails and other advertisements.
6. One important factor that is often overlooked is the “hits per sale ratio”. This indicates the number of hits that have to be made to a Text Link or Banner to generate a sale. This will give you an idea as to how much traffic is needed before a sale is made.
7. How often are commissions paid? This is another important matter that should be considered. Most reputed organizations pay their affiliates monthly or when they accumulate a minimum commission of $50 to $ 100 or as indicated by you. You should avoid any program that requires too many sales to reach the minimum amount.
8. Affiliate Programs are generally single tier or two tiers. A single tier program pays you for whatever business you have generated. On the other hand a two tier program pays you for the business you have generated and also a commission for the sales generated by a sub- affiliate, you have sponsored. A two tier program is always advantageous.
9. Long standing reputed organizations provide a whole range of tools and resources such as Banners, Text Links, Brochures, Websites and training for their affiliates. When choosing look out for such organizations because they certainly make life much easier and helps you grow your home based business.
10. Finally, you must read and understand the agreement before you join as an affiliate even if it happens to be the best organization in the world.

Understanding the Affiliate Agreement
The affiliate agreement created by the merchant and agreed by the affiliate, defines all aspects of the affiliate program and typically includes:
– Types of Web sites merchant will accept into the affiliate program
– Types of links allowed and guidelines regarding their use.
– Schedule and payments terms of fees and commissions
– Terms of usage of merchant logo, name and web content
– Technical specification that your web site must meet, if any
– Restrictions on types of content that may appear on affiliate sites
– Requirements for compliance with all government laws, ordinances, rules, and regulations.

Affiliate Tracking Systems
– Allow merchant to control how it credits click-throughs
– Monitor window of time in which affiliate can get credit for a click-through
– Record and store affiliate information
– Provide commission/fee reports

Affiliate management networks
An affiliate management network is a third-party entity that recruits affiliates, manages the registration process, tracks and properly credits all of the fee and commissions and arranges for payment. In return for these services, the affiliate management network collects from the merchant a percentage of each referral transaction’s fee or commission-perhaps as much 30 percent.

Well-established affiliate management networks: Example: Commission Junction, LinkShare [2]

Affiliate tracking technologies
To achieve this we develop a strategic online relationship with advertisers to improve the creation, management, and analysis of online marketing and sales activities. These activities are supported by a scalable and reliable tracking technology. Keeping track of the click-throughs and properly crediting the affiliates is a complex programming task. Companies such as BeFree and ClickTrade sell software that automatically monitors and credits all followed links resulting in a sale. Note that ClickTrade was acquired by Microsoft and is now co-branded as part of Microsoft bCentral.

Some tracking technologies are following:
– Custom links containing affiliate information or affiliate and merchant information
– Tracking cookies
– Third-party tracking software
– Application service provider tracking service
– Sub Domain tracking
– Database record matching.

Affiliate Marketing Risks and Challenges
Affiliate marketing is not without certain risks and challenges primarily form unethical affiliates and the negative perceptions online consumers have about tracking technologies.

Unethical Affiliates
– Cookie stuffing – Multiple cookies placed on visitor’s hard drive during a single visitor affiliate site.
– Spyware – General term used to describe software that has been installed on a personal computer without the owner’s permission, its unknowingly download and install spyware when you download games, screensavers, freeware utilities and so forth.
– Parasiteware – Redirects affiliate links and Replaces content of existing tracking cookies
– Spammers – Merchant is responsible if affiliates use spam to promote sites
– Negative perception of tracking cookies – Many consumers install and use blocking software which includes Block tracking cookies and Delete tracking cookies.

Why Affiliate Marketing Is Profitable for E-Business
If you have been considering an affiliate marketing venture, there are some very good reasons why you should go with this method of generating recurring revenue. Here are some of the ways that affiliate marketing can be a lucrative means of creating income that will be stable and allow you to grow exposure over time.
– One of the first advantages of affiliate marketing for the new entrepreneur is that the startup cost is very low. Most companies that offer affiliate marketing programs do not require any type of monetary investment on the part of the affiliate.
– The second expenses are limited to what you have to pay to connect with the Internet, the software you may need to load on your computer, and a web site where the ads associated with the affiliate marketing program can be placed. With web site hosting such an inexpensive service these days, setting up your own web site for the affiliate ads will be a breeze.
– Another reason that affiliate marketing is such a moneymaker is the fact that there are so many different types of ways to set up the program. You can go with the pay per click option, which works out great when it comes to promoting special offers. Ads that lead to product review sites often are a way to allow product users to go through your portal and leave comments on the items they purchase.

First Thing’s First-Avoid These Silly Affiliate Marketing Mistakes!
While affiliate marketing is a great way to earn a living, the fact is that many people become discouraged and drop out of programs. In many instances, the failure to be successful with affiliate marketing has to do with making a few simple mistakes. Here are some examples of those mistakes and why they should be avoided.
– A low-quality website with no original content and tossing in some affiliate links. While it is certainly true that you need to have a web site up and running in order to participate in an affiliate program, there is also the need to apply some effort to getting the word out about your site. Otherwise, the chances of people visiting your web site and clicking on one of the links are pretty slim.
– Another mistake many affiliate partners make is not choosing products that have some relevance to the content of your web site.
– Keeping your site content and the ads more or less relevant to one another will make it easier to generate revenue, and not fail as an affiliate marketer. Now, this may seem intuitive – but many make this mistake in subtle ways (i.e. they mismatch their customers with products).
– One final mistake that many affiliate marketers make is not sprucing up their web sites from time to time. Keeping the content fresh is one way of building and keeping a loyal reading audience because keeping the same old look and the same old text with nothing new to entice people back is a sure way to limit your chances at being a successful affiliate marketer. The fact is that you do have to proactively promote your site, keep the content fresh, and make sure the ads have some connection to the subject matter of your site.

What You Need Before Getting Started and Affiliated Marketing
While there is not a lot of expense in starting up as an affiliate marketer, there are a few things that you need to do if you really want to make money marketing other people’s products.
Here are some basic tips to help you line up all your things to do before you ever sign up for that first affiliate program.
– One of the basic needs for any successful affiliate program is to have a web site of your own. While it is possible to purchase ad space on sites and to advertise through Google Adwords, this is short term strategy setting up a basic web site that has a particular focus will make all the difference in the world to the success of your program. Keep in mind that your web site does not have to be complicated with a lot of flash media, animation or other fancy bells and whistles.
– In fact, if you plan on focusing your attention on affiliate marketing strategies that target the home consumer, you are better off with a basic site that will load quickly on a dial up connection. After all, dial-up is still extremely popular in a number of locations.
– Online payments are a great way to easily receive your affiliate payments and keep track of your earnings. From this angel, you may want to look into opening an account with one of the more popular online services that send and receive funds. i.g PayPal
– Another important aspect is determining just what your contact information will be, regarding communication with your affiliate program. This would include an email Address and physical mailing address. The email address should be one you have set aside specifically for your marketing business.

How to Pick the Best Product with the Best Payout and Great Demand
– One of the first things to think in terms of when it comes to affiliate marketing is determining where your talents and expertise happen to reside. One of the keys to picking the best products for your particular situation have to do with what you know and how much you know about it. As an example, a person that has worked in telecommunications for a number of years will probably know a great deal about telephony, related services, and technology that are used within that industry.
– Another aspect about setting up with the right products to promote has to do with where you see a niche to fill in. Finding a population or business sector that appears to be largely ignored in the marketing process can provide the inspiration you need to create a successful affiliate marketing program.
– Do not allow yourself to get discouraged simply because everything is not crystal clear as you begin this part of the process. Practicing some patience and giving yourself time to find the right products to promote as part of the program will only serve to make you more dedicated to the success of the program
In the end, you will find the products that will lead to a very successful affiliate marketing scheme and provide you with not only a handsome revenue stream, but also a lot of personal satisfaction.

Recommended Top Affiliate Networks on the Internet
When you decide to enter the world of affiliate marketing, there are a number of markets that are worthy of consideration. Here are three programs that have captured the attention of a lot of people, simply because of their stability and reliability.

1. Perhaps the best known of the three programs is Click Bank: clickbank. There a number of reasons why people find ClickBank such an attractive option when it comes to affiliate programs. One aspect is that the revenue generated by any purchase made through the ad portal is credited to your account within two minutes of the completion of the transaction. Because Click Bank provides such a comprehensive tracking program.
2. pavdotcom is also an excellent choice as an affiliate network. Just as with ClickBank, PayDotCom provides an easy to use affiliate interface that allows you to view your numbers in real time. You can easily track such data as the number of clicks on the ads and the amount of commissions you have made by directing visitors over to the marketplace through the portal on your web site. One of the advantages of PayDotCom is that this program will interface with your PayPal account, which means that vendors can send your monthly commission directly to your PayPal account. It is important to note that not all vendors will use PayPal as a payment method, so you may still receive payments by check as well.
3. shareasale is a third option that is rapidly gaining recognition among affiliate marketers. As a program that is designed to match up to the content of your existing web site, Share sale is free to join as an affiliate.

Rising to the Super Affiliate Level – What Constitutes a Super Affiliate?
A super affiliate is a marketing affiliate that has created a network that provides a high volume of traffic to affiliate products and a high percentage of completed sales from that traffic. The super affiliate is not one who reaches this level once, or even once in a great while.
– Creativity is an hallmark of a super affiliate. The ability to present the same old information is new ways will keep people interested. Super affiliates know how to look at products from a variety of different angles, determine a series of ways to present the product, and then go out and find an audience to match up with each one of those ways. For the super affiliate, there is always one more way to draw attention to a product, and find a larger audience than ever before.
– Another characteristic of a super affiliate is the desire and ability to master technology. This does not necessarily involve becoming an expert in information technology. But it does involve learning enough about existing technology to make good use of avenues already open on the Internet to promote products.
– Making the most of your status as a super affiliate means enjoying the opportunities that come to you through word of mouth; additionally, it means taking matters into your own hands and promoting your status in such a way that you increase your visibility.

The Super Affiliate Marketing Tactics Exposed!
So what is it that allows a super affiliate to make hundreds or even thousands of sales when you struggle to make 5 sales of the same product? Why is that super affiliates rake in the cash while you struggle to get by? Think about this carefully: you are both selling the exact same product. The only possible difference is the tactics you use to market it. Below, we have included a couple tactics that we should use to sell more like super affiliates. Try to incorporate them into your strategy.

Tactic #1: Play the Long Game
Whenever some new launch is coming up, they will throw together a promotional website; and try to direct traffic to it using pay per click search engine advertisements or solo ads. But there is a major flaw with this approach: almost without exception, people will purchase a “big launch” product from an Internet marketer they already know this is why you have to play the long game, rather than focusing on each individual launch, prepare an approach that will work consistently for years to make more sales.
Tactic #2: Steal from Super Affiliates Whenever Possible
Many super affiliates are also big name Internet marketers. They have public personas that we can follow quite easily. We can find their user ld’s, blogs, mailing lists and their web site’s. Through this approach we can learn from each of them.
Tactic #3: Ignore Talk; Look for Revealed Preference
Talk is just that: talk. Many Internet marketers will talk about all sorts of different methods you can use to make money. They will tell you to advertise using Google AdWords or to build a list or to create viral reports. While some of this information may be useful and legitimate, we should ignore what they say and watch what they do. This is called “revealed preference.
Tactic #4: Make Friends with the Seller
Believe it or not, the seller wants you to be successful, too. So contact him ahead of time, make friends with him; and see if he has any particular advice for you on selling the product. Keep in mind that he talks to a lot of affiliates on a regular basis (especially around big launches) and has the best understanding of the tactics they actually use.

Become a Supreme Affiliate Marketing: Additional Supreme Affiliate Marketing Tips
If you want to make a six figure income – and possibly a seven figure income – then you have to do something that is truly different than what you are doing now. The big question is “how can I do this”? Here’s following suggestion:

Tip #1: Start Acting Like a Business Owner
If you want to be a successful affiliate product marketer, you have to find people who can augment your weakness (and, trust me, no matter how smart you are, you have plenty of weaknesses). Additionally, affiliate marketers do not work in isolation. Most of them are friends with the marketers they sell products for; and this gives them far more leverage and information than you have access to. So start thinking of yourself as a business owner, rather than a completely self-sufficient Internet marketer.
Tip #2: Concentrate on Regular Sales
Regular sales are easier to quantify and predict; and, for this reason, it is far easier to continually ramp up small, regular sales until you are making hundreds of thousands or millions of dollars each year. So don’t worry if you’re the top affiliate for some major new product launch. Instead, focus on regular sales and regular increases in sales.
Tip #3: Do What They Do – Not What They Say
Observe the channels of marketer through which he promotes his product. Watch carefully to determine what methods he’s using to make sales, so you can replicate his successes, rather than chasing after dreams he’s written about.


We may conclude that choosing an Affiliate Program that is right for you might be time consuming but a worth while process. Going through the above whole process will also be a learning curve for new entrepreneurs who are serious about starting a successful home based business. So there is an opportunity for business students and young entrepreneur to develop a simple website with limited budget that can be arranged easily through their own personal savings. This website can be developed with only $100 to $200 (Approximately). You can increase your business growth through adopting the approach where you can affiliate your business with different websites having relevancy with your business and internet heavy traffic as well.

Finally there’s no single path to affiliate marketing riches – and that’s a good thing. Instead, there are many pathways through which you can make your millions. So scout carefully, look for functional methods you can use, and implement them in your own efforts. You may be surprised with the results. But whatever you do – don’t continue to use strategies that haven’t worked in the past. Always think like super affiliates because they use a range of tactics and adopt different ways in order to consistently outperform other affiliates. But one thing you should always play the long game and build lists, create forums, and secure a captive audience in advance of product releases.


The Author indebted to Ms.Umera Imtinan, Lecturer Comsats Unversity,Lahore for her suggestion to write this article.


1. Napier Albert. “Book: Creating a Winning E-Business”, 2nd edition, p256-257
2. Article, “Affiliate marketing”,”.
3. Article, “Affiliate Marketing Strategy for E-Business”, “”.
4. Article, “Affiliate tracking”, “”.
5. Online Book, “Super Affiliate Marketing Secrets: Gain the Edge You Need to Become a Super Affiliate Marketer” “free-ebooks”.
6. Internet Article, “Top 10 Tips for Choosing the Affiliate Program That Is Right for You”,””

Make an Incredible Income With Affiliate Marketing!

The Internet has been making more people rich in the last 20 years or so than any other business platform on the planet. It’s truly extraordinary how easy it is to make money online using affiliate marketing. What is affiliate marketing you ask? The short answer is it is using you (called an affiliate) as the marketing vehicle for the millions of products out there that need buyers.

As an affiliate marketer you are essentially a salesman selling great products that you believe in or have an interest in (you can choose from literally millions of affiliate products), but there are no conventional “sales” jobs involved in selling them.

Select A Product

The first step is to select a product to promote from literally millions of products and services that exist on the Internet. There are usually 2 types of affiliate programs with similar yet different concepts. Both concepts are designed to make affiliate sales but how you get there is a little different for each.

Affiliate Program Concepts

Which one is best? They both have their place in the online marketing arena. Each affiliate needs to make that decision for themselves as to which concept serves their needs the best … The one common thread both concepts have is you will need to join whichever program you choose by providing identifying information as to who you are (name, address, email, social security number, etc.) and how you want to be paid (mailed check, direct deposit, PayPal, some programs may offer others too).

Your affiliate link is how you get paid (make a commission) for referring potential buyers to the product website. By using your affiliate link for referrals, the product website then knows which affiliate has sent the buyer to the website. If the potential buyer does in fact purchase a product from that referral, the sale is tracked and credited to the referring affiliate.

The first concept is you have a single product or service where that one item is offered by itself. Usually the author or a reseller (someone who has the rights granted by the product owner to sell the product themselves) offers an affiliate program for the product. To become an affiliate you will need to join and be assigned a unique affiliate link and password to your account. The link will both identify you as an affiliate for that product and also identify which affiliate you are so they know who to pay for a sale. You will need to keep track of what affiliate link goes with each product you sign up for as each product will have a different affiliate link.

The second concept is having one affiliate program wrapped around numerous individual products and/or services. This type of affiliate program has numerous advantages over the single product program:

  1. Only one account for all commissions to accumulate (this is a huge advantage as you will see a little later)
  2. One account, one password to keep track of for numerous products and services
  3. Numerous products and services to promote with one account
  4. New products are added regularly into the one account
  5. High volume activity and usually a support staff exists which provides quicker support responses
  6. No need to worry about getting paid. These sites exist by keeping their affiliates happy. This may or may not be the case for an individual running an affiliate program

“Down Side” to Affiliate Programs

There are couple of “down side” points to make about affiliate marketing. Payments for credited referral sales (earned commissions) are usually not paid right away. There are good reasons for this practice by those running affiliate programs:

  1. When a sale is made at a website, the buyer is usually given a money-back guarantee period of time, usually 30 days, to use and evaluate the product to make sure it meets the users needs. If the buyer requests a refund of the purchase, then the affiliate also loses their commission for the sale. Payments to the affiliate are usually delayed until after the refund period has expired so the product owner is not “left holding the bag” for already paying a commission on a sale that has now been refunded.
  2. Commissions are usually paid on a regular payment cycle, normally monthly. What you earn in one payment cycle is usually not paid until the next payment cycle. This way all commission payments can be handled at one time and is not a full time job paying daily or even weekly.

The main “down side” to affiliate marketing is that most, if not all, affiliate programs set a minimum dollar amount you must reach in commissions before they will cut you a payment. This usually ranges from $20 – $50 or more in some cases. Breaking this down in simple, easy to understand terms is best served by an example.

Say for example you sign up for an affiliate program that has a $30 minimum payout level and the product sells for $49 with a 50% commission. You do all of your work and generate a sale from your affiliate link. OK, you have made a $24.50 commission (it will actually be a little less as you are paid on the net sale, after all processing expenses are paid) … You get that paid to you on the next payment cycle, right? Not exactly … You see, your commission does not reach the $30 minimum payout the program sets before they will incur the expense of cutting you a payment.

So what now? Well, you have to wait until you make another sale to get you over the minimum before you get your commission on the first sale. This could actually carry over for months before you actually get paid. In some case, you may never reach the minimum if you do not make more than one sale. In that case, your commission remains in “limbo” forever.

And to make matters worse, this minimum payout level applies to each individual product for which you are an affiliate. Different products are owned by different people and the earned commissions for all products do NOT accumulate to get you over any minimum payout level.

Any minimum payout level problem is solved when using affiliate sites instead of individual affiliate programs (this is the huge advantage referenced earlier). Each sale you make under the umbrella of the affiliate site is accumulated into one qualifying pool so you only have to make cumulative commissions to meet the minimum payout level to get paid.

To qualify for your commissions, you could make sales of 2 different products and the earned commissions from both are combined for you to reach the minimum payout level. Yes, this is huge … Instead of having 10 different sales individually setting in 10 different affiliate programs, none of which meet the minimum for you to get paid, now you have those 10 sales commissions added together to get you over the minimum payout level and now you get paid for all 10. I hope you see the huge advantage the umbrella type of affiliate programs offer.

How To Get Your Affiliate Link Online

The beauty of affiliate marketing is that unlike a salesman in the real world, you are not trying to convince anyone of anything. You just register a domain (which is recommended but not required) and put up a product review minisite, a one page website that describes and promotes all the features and benefits of the product being promoted.

Although a product review site is recommended for the best results, it does require that you do have some web space on the Internet. Hosting accounts are available for just a few dollars a month so this should be within anyone’s reach that has a true desire to be an affiliate. Many review sites can be placed on one hosting account. In fact you could well have thousands of review sites on one hosting account.

If you do not want to create product review sites, there are alternatives. Some affiliate sites offer you pre-made products and websites and are available for free for your use if you join their affiliate program.

Promoting Your Product

The seller in essence does all the conversion work; you just have to send targeted traffic to the sales page.

Here are a few ways to promote your affiliate link:

  1. Article Marketing: Write an article describing the features and benefits of the product
  2. eMail Marketing: Use your article as an advertisement in ezines or mailing lists
  3. Classified Ads: These are available all over the Internet for free
  4. Pay Per Click Marketing: Choose the best place for your ads
  5. Many of the larger affiliate sites offer training and promotional materials for your use for free

You are only limited by your imagination on how to market your affiliate link. Be creative. Step “outside the box” and create a new way that works for you. You can also research Online Marketing by searching the Internet. Online Marketing is a huge field and there are tons of informational products already written on the subject. Take advantage of that and you are on your way to financial freedom.

Making Money

Affiliate marketing is all about making money for both parties and often the commissions on sales (buyers you send to the site through your affiliate link) are 50% or higher! Some of the better affiliate programs pay as high as an 80% commission on every sale you make.

Although the product owner handles the product delivery, customer service and virtually everything else beyond your referring targeted potential buyers to them, including overhead, you get paid the same amount if not more as they do on the sale! Your only overhead is your domain (usually under $10 a year) and web space (a few dollars per month) if you decide to do review sites.

You can use the many free advertising venues such as online classified ads, article submission sites and more to refer traffic to your affiliate link site, however you would be missing out on building a much higher income potential because you would not be able to push these articles up in the search engine rankings as easily as if you had a domain. Getting traffic from search engines is the gold mine of affiliate marketing!

Thank you for your time and interest in learning more about affiliate marketing. Choose your affiliate programs and products carefully and wisely. We hope we have provided some insight into what to expect if you decide to enter the affiliate marketing arena. We wish you the best in planning your strategies and implementing your plan.

Just remember, if you keep doing what you are doing now, you can expect to keep getting the same results. We urge you to challenge yourself, move off your comfort zone and try something new. It can be very rewarding both in satisfaction and financially…

You do not have to want to become a full time marketer to enjoy affiliate marketing. Use it for a little extra Christmas money or to put a little spending money in your pocket you can just blow on something you have been wanting.

Step “outside the box” and give it your best shot.

Affiliate Marketing on the Internet – Your Questions Answered

This article is perfect for those who are looking to start out with Internet Marketing, as well as those who are new to it, and want to know more about what exactly is affiliate marketing.

I’ll attempt to answer all questions you have about affiliate marketing in this article.

What Is Affiliate Marketing?

I’ve seen lots of people asking this question – I’m going to answer this question in layman terms here, so everyone can understand.

Affiliate marketing is where you’ll be promoting other people’s products and services to potential customers and get paid commission whenever someone purchases the products and services you recommend.

Is Affiliate Marketing Legitimate Or Is It A Sham?

Of course affiliate marketing is 100% legitimate.

Lots of people have managed to generate millions of dollars from affiliate marketing every year and you can do the same as well. 😉

It is definitely not a sham…

What Are The Advantages Of Affiliate Marketing?

Some of the advantages of affiliate marketing include:

No need to bother about inventory

No need for you to have a warehouse to store products. It is done by the merchants.

No need to set up payment processing

No need for you to set up payment processing as well – as it is also done by the merchant. All you need is to sent potential customers to the merchant’s website, and everything else will be taken care of.

You can make lots of money from affiliate marketing

Take digital books for example – most of these merchants pay out up to 75% for a sale of a digital book – for example, if you manage to refer a sale for a digital book worth $40, you’ll receive a commission of $30 – it’s as simple as that.

You can sell to anybody around the world

There’s no boundaries on the Internet – your website or promotion will be seen by everyone around the world – this means that you have a chance to sell to anybody around the world! This is unlike a physical business, where you can only (in most cases) sell to people within the country where the business is located.

What Is The Difference Between Affiliate Marketing & Multi Level Marketing (MLM)?

In affiliate marketing, the amount of money you will make will depend on the amount of sales you make – and the merchant will pay you a certain amount of commission based on every sale. There are no downlines in affiliate marketing – you work directly work the merchant.

However, for Multi Level Marketing, the amount of money you’ll eventually make will depend on the money you make as well as the money your downlines make. The more number of downlines you have and the more money they make, the more money you’ll make in turn. It is impossible for you to profit a lot from Multi Level Marketing if do not have a good downline. I personally am not into Multi Level Marketing so I can’t comment any further.

Affiliate Marketing – How Quickly Can One Start Making Money?

My answer to this question is – it all depends on how much time and effort you want to put into it.

You need to follow the right steps and strategies – there are many people out there who claim that they can help you make millions of dollars overnight – most of these are scams, so please do not believe them.

It is possible though to make millions of dollars over a period of time – you need to first establish yourself on the Internet community as someone people can look to for answers on a certain subject/topic – and once you’ve built that trust with people, you can be sure that the community will buy whatever product/service you promote (and that’s when you’ll see millions of dollars coming in)

Does Anyone Really Make Any Money On The Internet Or Is It Just A Dream?

To be honest with you – when I was first introduced to this Internet Marketing business in late 2006, I, too, was also very skeptical as to whether this whole thing is genuine or is it nothing but scam.

After some persuasion, I decided to try it out and I was lucky enough to learn from the right Internet Marketing gurus (I was also scammed by some) who taught me the right techniques and strategies to profit from Internet Marketing as an affiliate marketer.

What Can I Sell To Make Money As An Affiliate?

You can choose to sell either physical products (e.g. televisions, cameras, books, computers, etc.) or digital products (e.g. digital books, MP3s, etc.).

If you are interested in selling physical products, you may wish to sign up as an affiliate for Amazon (where you can promote anything on the Amazon website and get a commission of about 4% – 8% per sale), or an an affiliate in Commission Junction, Performics (In Commission Junction and Performics, you can find many companies where you can promote products for – such as Sony, HP, etc.)

If you are interested in selling digital products, you can sign up as an affiliate for Clickbank where you can sell digital books on any topics such as business, health and fitness, personal development, marketing, etc.

In addition, you can also make money by giving out free memberships to people, free products (like free game consoles, free gift cards, free ringtones, etc.) or when someone requests for a free financial quotation, etc. – Here are some of the networks you may want to sign up – MaxBounty, ClickBooth, CPA Empire.

How & When Will I Receive My Payment?

Most of the affiliate networks (such as ClickBank, Commission Junction, Performics) issue out payments by check, and most of them issue out payments once every month. However, there are some (like ClickBank) that issues out payment every fortnightly.

Once you’ve received the checks, you can just bank them in your country’s local bank the same way you bank in normal checks. However, the checks might take a little bit longer to clear – between a week to approximately a month, depending on the bank – my suggestion is to check with them directly.

Is There Any Way To Track The Number Of Sales I Generate As An Affiliate?

Yes, all affiliate programs will have an option for you to see how many sales you’ve generated as an affiliate, as well as how much you’ve made over a period of time – such as in a single day, in a week, in a month, or in a year.

You’ll also know when payments are being sent out.

How Do I Get Started With Affiliate Marketing?

Ask yourself these questions – “what am I interested in?”, “What do I like to do in my spare time?” – For example, you love playing golf during the weekends, and you have an affiliation for it, then that’s what you should start off with – selling golf products as an affiliate.

Still continuing with the example of golf, you can either sell digital books on how to improve your golf swing, or you can sell golf clubs, golf balls, etc.

Next, you’ll need to find a merchant in the golf niche that has an affiliate program so that whenever somebody you referred to purchases something from the merchant’s website, you’ll be paid a certain amount of commission.

How you can find merchants in the golf niche that has an affiliate program is very easy – just head over to Google and type in the following:

[your area of interest] affiliate program – using the example of golf, you’ll type the following into the Google search:

golf affiliate program

Google will return a list of websites with merchants that offer an affiliate program. Visit those sites one buy one and sign up for their affiliate program. Normally, you do not need to pay to sign up for their affiliate program.

Once the merchant approves you to be their affiliate, they will give you a unique link (known as your affiliate link), which you’ll have to give to your potential customers to visit to purchase products/services that you’re promoting (the reason is because you’ll only be paid commissions if your potential customers purchase the products/services through your affiliate link)

That’s how you can get started with affiliate marketing.

Affiliate Product Marketing – Do I Choose The Product First Or Niche?

I would say you should look for your niche first. There’s no point in choosing the most profitable product to promote but you know nuts about that product – it will be very difficult for you to be able to convince potential customers for that particular product to buy from you as well.

Affiliate Marketing On A Zero Budget – Is It Possible?

Absolutely. Let me show you how.

First of all, it’s free to sign up to become an affiliate for the merchants. Next, you can make use of a free blogging website such as Blogger to set up your website to promote products for the merchant.

Once you’re done with your blog, you need to drive traffic to it (no traffic = no sales) You can make use of free traffic generation methods such as MySpace, FaceBook, Friendster, etc. to drive traffic to your website.

You can also drive traffic by placing advertisements on free advertisement sites like usfreeads, or write articles around the product/s that you’re promoting and submit them to the various article directories – such as EzineArticles, Article Dashboard.

By using the methods above you’ll be able to receive tonnes of traffic to your website, and get some sales.

So there you have it! A nutshell of how you can do affiliate marketing on a zero budget. 😉

How Do I Drive Traffic To My Website?

There are many ways to drive traffic to your website – both paid and free.

Let me go into the paid methods first – you can advertise your websites on the various search engines such as Google, Yahoo and MSN. For these paid search advertising, you’ll have to pay whenever someone clicks on your advertisement to go into your website.

Next, for free advertising, there’s lots of ways for you to drive traffic to your website (I’m going to list some of them here):

1. Write articles and submit them to the various article directories – in the author’s byline, include a link to your website.

2. Participate in forums in the area where you’re promoting products in (for example, if you’re promoting golf products, then you should visit golf forums). Some of these forums will allow you to put a forum signature – which is a link that’ll appear at the end of all your forum posts – include a link to your website there.

3. Sign up for social networking websites – such as MySpace, FaceBook, Friendster, etc. and connect with people in your niche area.

4. Post a free advertisement in free advertising networks such as usfreeads.

How Can I Market Affiliate Products Without A Website?

You can make you of advertising sites such as usfreeads, or you can pay to advertise on the various search engines such as Google, Yahoo and MSN.

Is It Possible I Use Only Pay Per Click Search Engine Marketing In Affiliate Marketing And Succeed With It?

Yes, you can use Pay Per Click Search Engine Marketing alone in affiliate marketing (I’ve done this before and made quite a lot of money from it).

However, you need to be equipped with the right skills in order to be able to create profitable campaigns.

Which Is More Profitable? Affiliate Marketing Or Google Adsense?

Here’s my answer – both can be very profitable – if you do them right. I won’t go into Google AdSense here but in essence, as a newbie, you should pick one (either affiliate marketing or Google Adsense) and focus on it.

Should I Use Landing Pages / Squeeze Pages With Affiliate Marketing?

First and foremost, for those of you who do not know what a landing page / squeeze page is, it’s basically a page that is used for the purpose of collecting your potential customers’ first name and email address in exchange for something – it could be a free report, free email training course, free audio program, etc. It has the intention of eventually leading the potential customers to the products/services you’re promoting.

As to whether or not you should use a landing/squeeze page with affiliate marketing will depend on your marketing effort – some of them build one to build his/her list so as to be able to sell to them in future (as the saying goes “the money is in your list”). But remember this – do NOT build a list and just send them emails to ask them to buy the products/services you are promoting – it’s probably going to turn them off. You have to give them VALUE, such that they’ll open up your email when they see them in their inbox instead of sending them to the thrash can.

There are people who did not use a squeeze/landing page – they would just send potential customers directly to the product sales page.

So it all depends on what your marketing strategy is – my advice is, try both of them out, and see which one works for you better.

What Is URL Masking In Affiliate Marketing?

URL Masking is basically hiding your affiliate URL and make it shorter. Let me give you an example – if you are promoting a ClickBank product, your affiliate link will look something like this:

Does the above link look very long and bulky?

One look at the URL people will know you’re trying to sell them something as an affiliate.

Here’s where URL masking comes in – to hide your affiliate id as well as to make your link shorter.

You can make use of free services such as TinyURL or PinURL.

What these sites does is that they’ll turn your long URL into a short one – such as – isn’t this URL much shorter and easier to remember? Also, your affiliate id is hidden from people.