Affiliate Marketing is a method by which a person promotes a product he/she does not own in return for a commission. This commission is usually per sale. Some are paid for delivering business leads, such as credit card or loan applications.
A popular affiliate program is Amazon’s Associates program, which has popularized the idea and has been running since 1996. Enthusiasts linked their own websites to Amazon’s site and Amazon tracked visitor referrals and paid a commission on any resulting sales.
For a business owner, affiliate marketing can give you an instant access to third party marketers who will help you promote your products through advertising, email, online links and social media networks in return for a commission. Although setting the program can be surprisingly easy, it does need good, critical thinking.
In Forrester Research’s U.S. Affiliate Marketing Forecast for 2009-2014, it estimates that the affiliate marketing industry will grow from $1.9 billion in 2009 to $4 billion by 2014. The growth will presumably be driven by better affiliate site content and increasingly transparent dialog between affiliates and marketers. – from http://www.practicalecommerce.com
Launching an affiliate network program can be done by your own proprietary program, or you can join affiliate networks such as Tradedoubler, Buy.at, Affiliate Window, Commission Junction and more.
Regardless of whether you are working on your own program or using affiliate networks, it is best to fully analyze and review all the policies and regulations of the program. This will save you costly mistakes later on.
If you liked this, why not 'like' us?
We appreciate it!
This post was by Alex, project coordinator at WeMakeWebsites. We are e-commerce and Drupal experts based in Clerkenwell, London.