What is Affiliate Marketing?

This is a guest contribution from CatchTheRisingTide.com.au.

Affiliate marketing is a very popular source of income for people who are working from home. It is best described as a performance-based marketing model that pays out affiliates for the visitors in which it sends from their marketing efforts.

In general, affiliate marketing is another form of internet marketing, and it has many similarities with other forms of marketing. For example, it combines the use of SEO (search engine optimization), email marketing, PPC (pay per click), and sometimes display advertising. There are many companies that offer affiliate programs, so there is no shortage of work.

Payment Models

There are several different ways for affiliates to be paid. The most popular one is CPS or Cost Per Sale. In this payment model, the affiliate is paid a percentage of the sale they bring the merchant. 80% of all affiliates operate under this payment model. One of the largest merchants and best examples is the Amazon affiliate program.

Another form of payment is CPA or cost per action. CPA is when someone signs up on the merchant’s website, therefore generating a lead. Depending on the niche, some companies are willing to pay a large sum for these. One of the most popular niches for this type of affiliate marketing is the personal finance niche; more specifically – payday loans.

Affiliate Tracking Codes

Affiliates who sign up for an affiliate program are given a special tracking code to use on their links which will allow the merchant to track where the traffic is coming from, and therefore pay the correct affiliate. This is done via affiliate tracking software.

How To Find and Affiliate Program

There are a couple different methods to use when searching for an affiliate program to sign up for. One of the most popular ways of doing this is through the website OfferVault.com. You simply type in a keyword for the niche you are interested in advertising for, and you will see a number of different programs available. It will bring you to the merchants website where you will then apply to be an affiliate.

Building Affiliate Sites

Most affiliate marketers have their own website(s) in which they advertise on. This is actually not a necessity. As mentioned previously, you are able to use PPC as a form of marketing. You could do this through Google as well as other mediums such as Facebook.

If you do create a website with affiliate marketing in mind, there are a number of different tactics you could implement in order to start making some money.

Review Sites

You have probably seen this before but not realized they were affiliates. These sites basically review products and give the readers and option to purchase whatever product they are advertising. This is based on the CPS model and the most popular merchant is Amazon.

Coupon sites

These websites focus on sales promotion. They search for deals around the web and share them with their visitors.

Price Comparison Sites

These are similar to the review sites, but instead of giving a detailed review of a website they simply compare prices on a number of similar products. It is also quite common for these to be a part of the Amazon affiliate program.