Affiliate Marketing is a unique form of performance-based promotion in which a firm rewards one or more merchants for each visitor or client brought about by the affiliate’s marketing efforts. An affiliate is usually not selling anything on his/her own behalf but simply promoting a product or service on behalf of another firm, as an agent. Merchants pay commissions to affiliates who refer new customers, bring them through a click-path or otherwise bring them to the merchant’s website. Some firms provide commissions based on revenue levels, while others offer a flat fee. In the best cases, both parties share in the commission generated from successful promotions.
Affiliate marketing offers tremendous advantages for a company looking to promote its products. For one thing, it is virtually free. Most merchants have no overhead costs to pay, so they can focus their time and resources on developing a product or service, rather than on the cost of marketing. Affiliate marketers do not have to create their own sites, write SEO-rich articles, deal with customer service issues, fill out forms, create sales pages, or deal with payment processing. The marketer merely needs to send emails to interested parties, wait for the replies, collect the email addresses, and then push a product to the audience. If all goes well, then the marketer earns a commission.
However, it is important to realize that the fees charged by affiliate marketing programs vary widely, even when presented on the same site. The fees charged by Google AdSense, for example, are generally much lower than the fees charged by other companies. The rates charged by ClickBank, on the other hand, may be higher than the rates charged by some other companies.
Affiliate marketing strategies can be used to promote products of any size and on any topic. To get paid for promoting products, however, you must have targeted a niche market, and you must know how to reach these people. The Internet, however, makes this task incredibly easy. There are literally thousands of affiliate marketing strategies that you can use to get paid for promoting products on the Internet.
ClickBank is one of the most popular affiliate marketing networks. Their simple interface, low commission rates, and industry-leading commissions attract tens of thousands of affiliate marketers every month. In addition to ClickBank, Commission Junction and PayDotCom offer similar features and revenue incentives. Affiliate marketers can choose from a wide variety of products and services and can earn generous commissions for selling them.
Affiliate programs that pay on a performance pay scale are another way of making money online. Some, such as LinkShare and ShareASale, pay a percentage of sales for each sale, while others, such as Commission Junction and PayDotCom, pay a fixed amount per sale. Affiliate marketers only have to start with one or two affiliate programs to get started. With time and practice, they can build up a portfolio of successful campaigns and make passive income from it.
Social media platforms such as Twitter and Facebook provide a great opportunity for affiliates to promote products and services. The right kind of content, coupled with the right kind of promotions, can lead to a whole pile of followers, some of which might become customers. If you can use your social media channels in a smart way, you can leverage the attention of your audience and create a viral effect that attracts more subscribers and fans, and thus leads to a huge increase in revenue.
A smart affiliate marketer also knows how to use email marketing effectively to promote a product or service. This is also known as a “sales funnel”. You need to build a relationship with your audience, build trust, and then present your offer. If you do not do these things, you will lose your audience. For example, if you do not offer value-added information and instead simply resort to “click here to buy”, you are not going to please your audience very much.