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Affiliate Marketing: An Overview

By Charles Hopkins Published 08/30/2006 | Affiliate Programs

So you have developed a product which you believe will do miracles! The next step and an even more important step is to make your customers believe in your belief, I mean you have to make your customers convinced that your product really is an out-of-this-world invention. How can you reach out to the maximum number of probable customers? Simple, create a website and then you have the access to the possible clients at all corners of the globe. Now how can you make sure that your website attracts maximum traffic? Well you have to take the help of the affiliate program. Yes, affiliate program, an alternative marketing strategy for the online business is by far the most effective solution for selling things over the internet.

The concept that is believed to originate in the chitchatting of a cocktail party seems to be an integral part of any profit making web business today. It is a kind of marketing, in which the marketer sells the other peoples merchandise. It works like this:

  • The affiliate has a website with the banners and text links of the company seeking advertisement.
  • The objective of the affiliate will be to direct the visitor to the advertising website with a click on the given links.
  • When this click takes the visitor to the intended website and the visitor makes some purchase from that website, the affiliate directly gets some commission.
  • While most of the merchants pay their affiliates only after a purchase has been made, there are many companies that pay their affiliates for all clicks and leads to their websites. There are various tools and software available that are used to track traffic and sales that are redirected from affiliate websites. The major solutions include hosted services, shopping carts with affiliate features, standalone software and third party affiliate network.

In its infancy, during late 1990's and early 2000's, conceiving and running an affiliate program was rather costly. But now you have a range of cutting edge software that reduces the cost of your affiliate venture dramatically. The affiliate marketing has led to the emergence of a new generation of entrepreneurs - the affiliates. Affiliate marketing has proven to be a really effective money making tool for those, who take this marketing strategy seriously and make all efforts to maximize the income potential by tapping in all the advantages of internet. There has been a consistent growth in the success rates of the affiliate companies in the past few years. Not only the big players in this sector, the single affiliates have also been greatly benefited by this wonderful money weaver of the cyber world.