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Affiliate Marketing: How It All Began; A Brief Discussion About Its History

The advent of the internet has changed the world; it has changed how we work, it has changed how we advance in our careers, it has even changed how we think.

Websites are no longer the tool for providing information, with the success of e-commerce, websites and web-related activities have become the most lucrative tool for money-making.

Now, it is not possible for any product, no matter how good it is to be accepted in the market, without proper publicity.

While traditional ways of publicity may prove extremely useful for selling products in the real market, advertising in the virtual world is a different ball game altogether.

Here you have to engineer other tricks to get your ball rolling and the affiliate program provides you just the ideal advertising tool for making your product popular over the internet.

Although affiliate marketing is still in the beginning stages of its infancy, it has become the most effective tool for promoting all kinds of business – sometimes involving a particular product, service, or concept – on the internet.

You might be feeling curious about the origin of affiliate marketing which has become literally all invasive in the recent years.

You will be surprised to know that it has only a brief history behind it and the story of its origin is rather simple.

According to certain IT myths, the concept of affiliate marketing sparked off in a cocktail party, where a lady approached Jeff Bezos, CEO and founder of with an intention to sell books on her Web site.

This led this man with exceptional business acumen to evolve an idea to link the website in question with the Amazon site and receiving a commission on the books sold on the linked website.

This led to the creation of the Amazon Associates Program in July 1996 which involved placing banner or text links on the affiliate’s site for individual books with a direct link to the Amazons home page.

And every time a visitor was directed from the associate’s site to and purchased a book, the associate received a commission.

However, many researchers on the matter are of the opinion that it was not Jeff Bezos who pioneered the concept of affiliate marketing, he only popularized it.

As claims Brad Waller, the VP of Affiliate and Business Development for EPage (, with its buy web program, CDNow was the first to coin the concept of an affiliate program in November 1994.

The buy web program introduced the concept of click-through purchasing through independent online stores.

Since its inception in the mid-1990s, affiliate marketing has come a long way and in the new millennium, we find more complex kinds of affiliate programs all over the internet.

The use of advanced tools and marketing style – both have changed a lot. It is a mature medium of advertising now and with the use of such tools as cookie stuffing, data feed, and like affiliate marketing is going to add new dimensions to the web marketing scenario.

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