Online affiliate marketing is a fast and easy way to start an online business and make money on the internet. Affiliate marketing simply means that you promote someone else's product or service and get a share of the profits made from your promotion. The key to success is finding good and profitable products or services to promote, provided by reliable merchants.
Fortunately there are a few decent affiliate marketing services that will help you find profitable products as well as collect the commissions for you from the merchant when a sale is made (see below).
What you do as an affiliate (also called publisher, or reseller) is display ads, text links, or banners on your website or blog, or in an email campaign. Then you get paid a commission by the merchant (advertiser) when a visitor takes a specific action, such as making a purchase, subscribing to a service or giving contact information.
Commissions range from as little as 2% for high ticket items up to 75% of the selling price for ebooks, software and other types of digital downloadable goods. For referring a lead (prospect, potential customer) to a merchant, you are paid a fixed commission whether the lead do business with the merchant or not.
Most affiliate merchants pay out commissions once a month or once every two weeks. Some even pay instantly as soon as a sale has been made (it goes automatically through the PayPal payment service). So, online affiliate marketing can create a continuous stream of income when done right.
The greatest advantage of affiliate online marketing is that there is no hassle mailing goods to customers, taking payments etc. You just send customers to the company, and the company sends you money in return. Clean and easy!
There are thousands of companies that would like you to promote their products or services, and there are hundreds if not thousands of business affiliate programs designed to make it easy for people to promote them and eventually make money.
You can market the product(s) through your own website or blog, or just by advertising your affiliate link, or email your subscriber list if you have one. Although it's possible to do online affiliate marketing without a website of your own, I do recommend that you set up one, for several reasons.
Your own website is a useful 'tool' when doing affiliate business. Firstly, some merchants require that affiliates own a website to be approved. Also, some "ready made" affiliate business programs imply that you have a website.
Secondly, with a website you can establish trust and credibility with potential buyers that visit your site, which is very important to get them to click on your affiliate links.
Thirdly, you can promote multiple products on a website, probably more than you could afford to advertise on Google! With your own website it's much easier to pursue different online affiliate business opportunities.
Choose only one product (or a few closely related products) to promote in the beginning.
Concentrate on one kind of business and work persistently on that until you see results and make some money. Don't do the same error as so many others (me included!) when starting out on the internet: trying every' money making opportunity' that comes across instead of working seriously building a business.
Later, when you have grown a viable business, you can expand and promote more products.
Many product owners have their own affiliate program, to which you have to sign up in order to become their affiliate. However, there are many online affiliate marketing solutions on the web that make it easy to start your own internet affiliate business.
Firstly, there are affiliate management agencies providing thousands of affiliate products that anybody can promote. The best of these services do everything for you, including collecting your commissions from the vendors. They are even free to use. So, using an affiliate management service is probably the easiest and safest way to start out as an online affiliate marketer.
Or, you may want to start with a "ready made" affiliate business program, where everything is setup; the only thing you have to do is promoting the program. There are a few good ones on the market today; however, some of them charge a monthly fee for you to use them.
is a very easy to use affiliate management agency offering digital downloadable stuff to promote. To use their service you sign up for a free Clickbank account; then you can promote as many of their thousands of products as you like. You just pick a product of your choice, get an affiliate link and put that link on your website or blog. It's very simple to do, and the easiest way to start your online affiliate marketing business.
While ClickBank offers digital products, you can promote physical goods as well as "money matters" like insurance and finance at Commission Junction. They are also free to use, but not quite as simple as ClickBank, as you must be approved by each product owner you wish to get affiliated with.
is another online affiliate marketing network that offers commissions for each purchase or potential customer (lead) you generate for them. They deal with physical goods from well-known brands like Wal-Mart, Clinique and Apple iTunes, as well as insurance, finance and more.
is an affiliate marketing service similar to ClickBank, but offering hard goods as well as digital products to promote. However, it has one disadvantage as compared to the three affiliate marketing networks mentioned above: it doesn't collect the commissions for you so the vendors pay out commissions separately.
And here are a couple smaller affiliate management services you could try:
Plimus is very similar to ClickBank but with different offers. It's easy to get accepted as an affiliate with them.
This affiliate agency contains mostly physical products, and focuses more on health/well-being based offers. It's easy to get accepted.
Great because they have a lot of physical product offerings with solid payouts. Relatively easy to get accepted, especially if you have a website to show them.
Similar to Commission Junction (see above). Not as large, but commissions are usually better. Relatively easy to join and to use.
They prefer intermediate and advanced affiliates to apply here, so if you are a newbie it would be better to use another agency to start with.
Affiliate Power Group
The Affiliate Power Group is an online couching group aimed at helping affiliate marketers getting more traffic and sales. If you don't make much money with your affiliate business now, the APG can be the right place to get help.
Cookies Are Crucial In Affiliate Marketing
Web cookies are among other things used to identify affiliates. Therefore it's crucial to know how these tracking cookies can affect your business.
Plug In Profit Site
is a ready made affiliate business-in-a-box. It includes a complete website, 5 affiliate programs that can make you money by promoting this one program, many promotional ideas, very good training, a forum, and much more. Joining PIPS is free, while you need to pay with some of the other programs to make any substantial money.
SiteSell's 5 Pillar Affiliate Program
SiteSell's 5 Pillar Program is an affiliate business program of high value - one of the best on the market. It is very easy to promote, as you are given lots of tools to help you. And it's free to join. Their main product - called Site Build It! - is of very high quality and therefore easy to sell.
My Affiliate Power Site
There are literally thousands of affiliate business opportunities to choose among. This program teaches you how to set up an affiliate site and start making money with it.