“Affiliate marketing has made businesses millions and ordinary people millionaires” – Bo Bennet
Do you want to know the real meaning of Affiliate Marketing? If yes, then you are in the right place!
Well, you might have heard this term “Affiliate Marketing”, and you will be shocked to hear that people are making millions of dollars and living a happy life.
You may ask me a question on how these people earn?
I have the answer, but before that, you need to know something essential. I want to tell you that you need to have some knowledge regarding Affiliate Marketing.
If you don’t know or know a little bit, then don’t worry, this post is made specially to know about Affiliate Marketing. So, once you read this complete guide, then you are good to go.
Don’t forget to read: Internet Marketing – The Complete Beginner’s Guide 2020.
What is Affiliate Marketing?
Affiliate Marketing is a process of promoting (product or service) through links that are posted on a website or any other medium in which the publisher gets a commission if customer purchases through that link. This is one of the types of Internet marketing.
This type of marketing is one of the best ways to grow your business because there are 4.54 billion people active on the internet as of April 2020.
So you can imagine the usage of websites in which you can also promote and earn money.
How does Affiliate Marketing works?
To make you understand easily, I am going to divide into three parties which are involved in affiliate marketing. Those are,
- Seller/product creators.
- The affiliate/publisher/advertiser.
- The Consumer/buyer/customer.
The seller usually creates the product (physical or digital) or establish a service and start a business. They may belong to,
- Solo entrepreneur
- Large enterprise
- A vender
- Retailer to a product
The seller need not to actively participate in this marketing, but if they want, they can be an advertiser and make a profit from revenues associated with Affiliate Marketing.
The seller takes more responsibility in managing the product or service. They design the product, then take the test (reviews) and finally implements it.
The affiliates are those who promote the product by using different strategies. The money spent on affiliates depends on the strategies they are using.
The affiliate promotes the product to convince customers that it is valuable or beneficial to them and recommends to purchase the product.
Consumer plays a major role in Affiliate Marketing. So when consumers purchase the product, the seller and the affiliate share the profit.
How do affiliates get paid?
The affiliates usually get paid when they make the sales. The way they get paid is different for different companies. Before you promote any products, it is essential to know how the company is paying to you.
So we will discuss the different ways where the affiliates get paid.
- Pay per sale
This is the most common structure of Affiliate Marketing. In this structure, the merchant usually pays a percentage of the sales price of the product you are promoting and making sales. So the sales percentage varies for different merchants.
Some merchants pay 30% or 50% to affiliates. Some other merchants pay more than 50% like 60% or even till 80-90% whatever.
How much you earn is entirely dependent on the interest of the merchant on his/her product.
This type of structure can also be seen mostly in Affiliate Network Programs.
- Pay per lead
This type of structure is more complicated than pay per sale. Here the affiliates earn a commission based on the conversion of leads.
The affiliates usually send the customers/visitors to visit the merchant’s website and complete the desired task like filling out the form, signing up for a trial, subscribing to a newsletter, downloading any software or files, etc.
So basically, affiliates get paid only when someone does any of the desired action, as I mentioned above.
This type of structure can be seen in Affiliate Network Programs.
- Pay per click
This structure mainly focuses on the number of clicks. So when the affiliates give the link to the merchant’s website (through banner ads, etc.), and when someone clicks the link, then the affiliate earns the commission. This is best for those who have lots of traffic.
This type of structure can be seen in Google ads, YouTube ads, etc.
Types of Affiliate Marketing
In this post, I am going to explain 12 different types of Affiliate Marketing so that you can get more insight into how the products or services are being promoted in different ways.
- Webmaster Affiliate
- Search Marketing Affiliates
- Social Media Affiliates
- Blogger Affiliates
- Coupons Site Affiliates
- Review Site Affiliates
- Loyalty Portals
- Incentive Traffic Affiliates
- Email Marketing Affiliates
- Large Web Properties
- Company Partnership Affiliates
- Traditional Media Affiliates
- Pay Per Call
- Mobile Affiliates
- Conversion and Technology Affiliates
Webmasters are those who own and build their websites for advertising that comes under Affiliate Marketing.
Usually, Webmasters are signing into CJ and Shareasale, where you can quickly contact them for partnership on their website. So in this way you can earn some profits.
If you want to become a webmaster and earn money, then check this article – How to become Webmaster and make money?
There are many webmaster affiliate programs like Spocket, Loganix, Litespeed, etc.
Search Engine Marketing Affiliates or PPC
These types of Affiliates promote products or services and earn money through paid advertisements. This includes Search engine advertising. This type of marketing requires some investment.
To become an SEO Affiliate, you need to have PPC skills because affiliates are paying for every click and receive payments when leads make the purchase. So it is better to have some sort of knowledge to use this.
SEO and PPC types of marketing should be done by experts who can try different methods to convert leads into sales.
Social Media Affiliates
Social Media Affiliates are those who promote products or services through social media like Facebook, Instagram, YouTube, etc. where each of them has its ad platform.
These affiliates usually promote through their followers, friends, and members of different groups on Social Media channels, which is very useful.
These affiliates promote the products/services by posting information about the company and reviews of new products.
So bloggers write an article and try to rank in the search engine and want to get more traffic so that they have more chances of conversions/sales.
Coupons Site Affiliates
Whenever the customers are interested in a particular product/service, they often search for offers/coupons from various merchants. This makes the coupon sites important for affiliate business.
It has both advantages and disadvantages. The main advantage is that you will get more traffic and of course, revenue also increases.
The disadvantage is that these affiliates rank higher than you in search results rankings that are associated with your company’s name and the word coupon code.
Review Site Affiliates
These affiliates create the websites in which the product/service is reviewed. Many of the affiliates recommend this because there is a high chance of getting sales.
The main reason why it makes more conversion is that customers always look for product/service reviews. So they go and search on YouTube, Google, quora, amazon, etc.
Loyalty portals are said to be the companies that have a broad membership base where they promote your product as an advertiser to its members, and they may also provide cashback policy.
Many loyalty portals are available in the market right now that works based on performance where you can choose and improve your business.
Incentive Traffic Affiliates
First, let us understand what incentivized traffic is. It is a process where the visitors receive a reward for doing the desired actions.
When a user enrolls in these activities, he/she will get rewards in terms of online currencies. For example, if you visit given 5 websites and wait for 10 seconds each, then you will earn some online money like ten coins in an app or website.
They are some apps where you will get virtual coins for installing recommended apps. Taskbucks is one of the popular apps on Android, where many of the users use to make money by converting virtual currencies into real money.
So these affiliates redirect visitors to apps or websites/blogs in the conversion of coins. In this way, the website/blog or an app gets traffic.
These types of programs have both advantages and disadvantages. The advantage is that you will have more traffic and the downside is that it doesn’t convert more sales.
Email Marketing Affiliates
Email Marketing is said to be very useful in terms of conversions and lead generations of a product or service.
This type of marketing has been used for many years and has gone through some changes.
Many affiliates prefer the email marketing method because it gives comfort to the subscribers, i.e., whenever the customer wants, they can open the emails sent by publisher/affiliate. This makes the huge advantage to increase the conversion rate.
Large Web Properties
These are the websites that get quite massive traffic at any time. If you are interested, you can have your banner displayed on these. By doing this, you will get more traffic.
The large web properties are more receptive to share deals and CPA deals as they will do anything that makes conversion/sales and make them money.
Company Partnership Affiliates
The affiliate partner is an agreement between affiliate programs to promote each other’s products/services. The agreement also may be between an affiliate program and either individual or business.
In this way, they make good relationships between them and make good conversions. It also has many advantages, like increasing brand awareness, conversions, etc.
So if you are interested in this, you can contact the company and promote each other’s products/services.
Traditional Media Affiliates
Traditional media includes TV, radio, newspapers, magazines, etc., which can be done in a CPA (Click-Per-Action) basis. If you are interested, you can contact the local newspaper or radio station and promote your product.
This type of method is quite effective and has been used from earlier days. It is so popular that even today, they use to promote the product/services.
Pay Per Call
Pay-per-call (also called Cost-per-call) is an advertising model in which the affiliates get paid, depending on the number of telephone calls. The merchants may also charge per impression or conversion.
This campaign can be more beneficial because it allows the customer to interact with the seller before they buy the product or service.
The calls made by the affiliates can be local or international, depending on the product or service.
Mobile affiliates earn rewards by promoting products/services through affiliate links in mobile devices. Most of the affiliates make money through the apps.
With the growth of mobile users all over the world, affiliate marketing through mobile devices made more money-making opportunities.
Conversion and Technology Affiliates
To do this type of marketing, you need to reach out to as many affiliates as possible, so that you can get a handful of business partners.
When you get a better partnership, the benefits will be more and partnership last for a long time.
History of Affiliate Marketing
The first Affiliate Marketing was done in the year 1989 by a person named William J. Tobin. He started a company called “PC Flowers & Gifts” and sold flowers online across the country, and this was his 7th startup out of 10 founded since 1968.
Mr. Tobin started his life running his own lawn mowing business with equipment purchased for him by his mother. He later joined the army and afterward got a business degree from Adelphi University.
We can say that it was the first brand in history to have an affiliate program. Even though he started several startups before, but this startup made him make over $6 Million in sales and almost 3000 affiliate marketing partners.
The first company to use Affiliate marketing as a program was Amazon that was available to the public. They named it as Amazon Associates Program, which was started in the year 1996.
In this system, the user gets a small amount of money (commission) by referring the products from Amazon through the links. This type of marketing system continues to grow even today!
The Story of Affiliate Networks
In the year 1998, Commission Junction and Clickbank had started their business as Affiliate Networks and remain the best ones even today. These help the smaller companies who aren’t there in Amazon to take part in this system.
So usually, merchants pay a small fee to these networks, and then the network pays to the publisher/user who promotes and uses the different product links.
In this way, the business could easily reach many different places.
Here are some of the best Affiliate Marketing Networks,
- Commission Junction Affiliate
- Rakuten Marketing
- eBay Partner Network
- Wealthy Affiliates
The invention of Cookies
The concept of Cookies came into existence when they started thinking about tracking the customers. This is used mainly to study the customer’s behavior towards their products.
So, a cookie is usually a small piece of data (information) stored in the browser which tracks your actions like which products you are trying to search and which pages you are visiting (surfing) on the internet.
This invention of cookies made affiliate marketing more effective because they can know where the data is coming from, giving better ideas about what works and what doesn’t work.
You can watch the video below to understand it in a much better way.
NOTE: Cookies don’t track your private information like credit card details, etc. It only stores non-privacy data to provide a better user experience.
Why should you become an Affiliate Marketer?
I will tell you the main reasons why you should become an affiliate marketer.
- Passive Income
Before we dive into this, I want to ask you two quick, simple questions.
What is passive income?
What is the difference between income and passive income?
If you don’t know, no problem, I will tell you.
Income is what you earn in a “regular” (9-5) job. In this, you need to be at work to make money. But Affiliate marketing gives you the ability to earn money while you sleep.
This is what we call it as “Passive income”. For example, consider YouTube, once you make the videos and monetize it. That’s all you don’t need to worry about the videos again. It just grows continuously, and it is an evergreen process.
So once you complete a campaign, you will see continuous returns as the customers’ purchases the product over the following days and week.
You don’t need to be in front of the computer; your marketing skills will be earning you a steady flow of income.
- No customer support
If the customer is having some issues with the products you are promoting, you need not worry about that. The contact support team for that particular product/service is available to ensure customer satisfaction.
So you don’t need to deal with any complaints received from customers. The primary responsibility of Affiliates is to link the seller with the customer. Then the seller deals with the complaints or any queries.
- Work from home
This is the main thing I like the most. You don’t need to go out in a hurry and travel a far distance to your office. I know that you hate this most. This is why I recommend Affiliate Marketing to you. You can work with comfort anytime at home.
Just you need a laptop/computer and internet connection, and you are good to go.
- Performance-based rewards
In your regular job, you need to complete every task, and at last, you will end up having some money in your hands at the end of the month.
But here in affiliate marketing, you will earn depending on your performance. So how much you earn depends on how you are promoting the product (strategy), not on how much you work (to some extent).
Advantages of Affiliate Marketing (For Business Owners)
- This type of marketing is purely performance-based (always depends on the strategies used to promote and make sales).
- It helps you to broaden your audience (more chances of promoting your business by the affiliates – this is mainly for the business owners)
- It is cost-effective (you can start this marketing with less or no money!)
- Affiliates can rapidly scale your traffic and sales (by using different methods of promoting).
- Affiliates can increase your brand awareness (reputation).
- No expertise required (you can do this as an individual).
- ROI can be easily measured (can measure the number of sales, clicks, etc.)
Future of Affiliate Marketing
The affiliate networks reported being turning in approximately 2.16 billion Euros in the United Kingdom alone! This revenue mainly came from travel, personal finance, gaming, lead generations, and gaming niches.
By 2012, affiliate marketing showed 6% of the entire UK’s whole economy and generated 9 billion Euros in sales. This report made according to the study made by Internet Advisory Bureau (IAB).
So by observing some reports from above, we can conclude that it is widely popular and continues to be a vast potential to earn money.
The other main reason for marketing being famous is that people often research more before they make any purchase from a product or service.
So to enhance any business, affiliate marketing is a must to have. It is emerging, more reliable than ever!
Facts of affiliate marketing
Here are some amazing facts which are essential to know the effectiveness of this type of marketing.
- Affiliate Marketing, which is spent in the US, will reach $6.82 billion in 2020!
- 81% of all businesses used this type of marketing to drive sales in 2016.
- It is possible to make over $1,000 in a single sale. Some high paying affiliate programs pay marketers with $8000 in one purchase!
- A survey revealed that 9% of affiliate marketers make over $50,000 annually.
- 73% of merchants say that their affiliate revenue met their needs and expectations.
- Creating a price comparison website is one of the popular ways to start an affiliate marketing business.
- 76% of publishers said that affiliate marketing made website monetization easy for them.
In my opinion, I won’t conclude that Affiliate marketing is the best way to earn money if you are a newbie blogger or any other person who wants to make passively!
The main advantage of Affiliate marketing is that you don’t need to create your product or service, you just need to promote the product or service of others and then earn the commissions when you make the sales.
This process may look easy, but you have to remember that by simply posting down the links doesn’t work. People don’t just visit your website and buy the products you are promoting.
This is the most common mistake that everyone does. So I always recommend you to know the best strategy before you start promoting. You need to build trust among customers.
Well, Affiliate Marketing also has some cons and drawbacks, but you need to be a little bit careful, and things will go smoothly.
Always remember that you need to be careful while selecting the products that you want to promote. Because some of them will be fraud in which encouraging them may lead to a decrease in your reputation and may fall into some problems.
I will write more posts on how to promote the best products, how to use the best strategies to have more conversions and sales, etc in the future.
So, this is all about Affiliate Marketing. If you want to know how real affiliates earn, then comment down below, and I will surely reveal the secrets of Affiliate Marketing. I will tell you how you can make millions of dollars by using a simple strategy.
If you have any doubts, leave a comment below, and I will answer as soon as possible.
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