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may have heard of webmasters who have turned their websites into
"cash cows". You may also have heard these same people
talk about the affiliate programs they've enlisted in, and how joining
these affiliate programs was one of the best money-making decisions
they'd ever made.
So what is an Affiliate Program? How does one of these programs
work? And how can you get in on the action?
An Affiliate Program is a referral marketing strategy, which
is often revenue-sharing, whereby a merchant website increases its'
traffic and/or sales by paying a commission to referring websites.
The commission is normally paid after the referred site visitor
makes an action, such as signing up or making a purchase on the
How Does An Affiliate Program
As the diagram below illustrates, there are three entities involved
in typical affiliate program: the Merchant, the Affiliate
and the Customer.
example, if you join an Affiliate Program, you will be paid a referral
fee for each visitor who (1) is directed to the merchant website
through a link on your website and (2) who subsequently makes the
required action on this merchant website. In this scenario you would
be referred to as the affiliate, and the website hosting
the affiliate program is referred to as the merchant.
Affiliates have quickly become veritable sales forces for merchant
websites. As in a typical sales force, the affiliate sites receive
their income from a pre-determined referral fee or commission rate
that is based on a measurable action by the site visitor. This measurable
action could be clicks, leads, an outright sale or any other action
a merchant would like to reward.
How Can You Become An Affiliate?
It's simple. Visit a merchant or an affiliate
network website and fill out the online application. Next, install
the provided banner or text link onto your site and
hook this up to the unique tracking link provided by the
The tracking link includes a unique identifying code that allows
the merchant to correctly track the actions the referred customer
makes on the merchant website.
The banner/text link represents a visual packaging of the merchant
site. This is the equivalent of a merchant's storefront window in
the affiliate's site. It also becomes the point of transfer from
the affiliate site to the merchant site.
Signup now and start earning big bucks.