Image by Matthieu Dejardins, eCommerce Activist via Flickr
This is a marketing practice in which a business rewards one or more affiliates for each visitor or customer brought about by the affiliate's own marketing efforts. Examples include rewards sites, where users are rewarded with cash or gifts, for the completion of an offer, and the referral of others to the site. This industry has four backbone players: the merchant, the network, the publisher and the customer. For writers this industry is another source of online income.
For those interested to become one of their affiliates visit the List of Affiliate Program Directories. You will see that there are hundreds or even thousands of them attracting publishers or affiliates to earn commission from a merchant or advertiser on the basis of actions they initiated. This could be from a visitor on their website purchasing a good, viewing an advert, clicking a link or more. And choose which affiliate programs will suit you.
Now to answer your question: How to make money with affiliate programs? Assuming you were already one of their affiliates. These are what you would do:
- Write a review of some of their products. Let people know how good they are. Include your affiliate link at the end of the review. Post your review to some free sites or to some paying sites you are writing with like Triond, Wikinut, Bukisa, Hubpage and other paying sites that accept original article reviews of all sorts of products. Imagine that – you are paid by the affiliate programs to review of their products and at the same time you are also earning for posting your original articles to some paying sites.
- Use your blog or create a new one for free at sites such as Blogger.com and other free hosting sites and post your review of their products, including your affiliate link. Then “ping” your blog at a site such as Pingomatic.com, so it gets picked up quickly by search engines or share your blog contents to some social networks like Twitter, Facebook, Google+ and Stumbleupon.
- Join popular marketing forums – there are hundreds of them across the Internet like WarrriorForum.com and make frequent contributions to popular threads there. Be sure to go into your forum profile and edit your “signature”. Make a signature that includes your affiliate link, or a link to your own “review” website of their product. That way, every time you make a post, anyone who sees it will see your signature and potentially click on your affiliate link. Search engines will find them too.
- Once every few weeks post a press release at PRweb.com (optional), in which you include your favorable review of their product, along with your affiliate link. The site might charge you. If you pay them a small fee, they will guarantee that your press release is picked up by all major search engines, potentially sending you thousands of visitors.
- If you own an email list of newsletter subscribers or other people who have opted in to receive email offers from you, send them an email telling them about their affiliate programs websites, and feel free to use some of the text from their homepages in your email. Include your affiliate link at the end of the email. But do not spam in any way.
- Lastly, use Pay-Per-Click (PPC) advertising. Using a PPC account from Google Adwords, Yahoo, or from many others, you can easily generate income too. You can either send people directly to them using your affiliate link in your PPC ads, or you use your own blog site or website in which you have a review of their products, followed by your affiliate tracking link. Just make certain that the ad you create does not appear as though you work for them. Always check the terms of your agreement with the affiliate program before proceeding.
Additional information about Affiliate program: It is believed that Affiliate marketing overlaps with other Internet marketing methods to some degree, because affiliates often use regular advertising methods. Those methods include organic search engine optimization, paid search engine marketing, e-mail marketing, and in some sense display advertising.
Affiliate marketing is using one website to drive traffic to another—is a form of online marketing, which is frequently overlooked by advertisers. While search engines, e-mail, and website syndication capture much of the attention of online retailers, affiliate marketing carries a much lower profile. Still, affiliates continue to play a significant role in e-retailer’s marketing strategies.
This industry does not charge you to become one of their affiliates. This is free and open to all – who meet all the requirements they needed.