These days, more and more people are now going into online business and online marketing as a means of supplementing their income or as their primary or, in some cases, only source of income. This is perhaps because online marketing business offers plenty of benefits you’d normally not get from a business in ‘real life.’
For instance, you can market or sell products and services to just about anyone on the globe who has access to the Internet if you do your marketing or selling online. The Internet truly makes the world a ‘global village’ and this can easily translate into a broader target market for you, hence potentially larger customer base and profits. Another benefit is that setting up and running an online business requires only a fraction of what you would normally spend to set up and run a business ‘real life,’ and this translates to a lot of money saved for the owner of the business.
Another enticing thing online marketing is that one must not have one’s own personal products to get started. With online marketing, one can start making money just by selling, or even trying to sell, other peoples products. Also, getting started with online marketing is actually quite easy. All that one has to do is to sign up with an online retailer or merchant who has products for sale and offers commissions for his products sold by other people. After signing up, one can immediately start making money by selling the merchants or the retailers products on one’s website, through one’s emails or even on other people’s websites for a commission or a share in the sales.
Apparently, the most widespread and fastest growing way of making money online selling other peoples products is affiliate marketing. Affiliate marketing, quite simply put, is a business relationship between an online merchant or retailer, who has products to sell, and his affiliates, who are willing to promote or sell the merchants products on their website, in their emails or on other people’s websites.
In a typical affiliate marketing arrangement, an online merchant or someone who has products for sale, provides his affiliate marketers with banner and text adverts that link to his website. All the affiliate marketer has to do then is to get these banner and text adverts posted on his website, and whenever traffic is directed to the merchants website through these adverts and sales are made, the affiliate marketer gets paid a share or commission from the sales. Affiliate marketers are often paid on commission basis (i.e. a certain percentage of the price of the product sold), although other online merchants prefer to pay a fixed amount for the affiliate marketer’s compensation.
Starting an online money making affiliate marketing venture is quite quick, easy and also really inexpensive. All that one has to do is to sign up (usually free of charge) as an affiliate or associate for an online merchant or company that offers affiliate marketing programs. Another way to doing this, and probably an easier one as well, is to join an affiliate network a network of many different online merchants or companies that offer affiliate marketing programs. Joining such affiliate networks is usually free of charge, however some companies and networks may require you to pay a registration or sign-up fee. Such sign-up fees, however, are usually made as payment for additional services that the company or network may render, like providing you with tools and assistance to kick-off your online affiliate marketing business.
When signing up for an online affiliate marketing program, you will in most cases be required to fill out a form giving out some personal details of yourself. Some affiliate marketing programs may also require you to give out details of your website including your website’s URL and a description of its contents. This is mainly to enable the merchants or affiliate network to verify that you actually have a website with contents that are relevant to their products. For some affiliate programs, on the other hand, you are not required to have a website. After filling out the online form, your membership is then either approved or disapproved, and if your membership is approved, you are automatically given access to all the various affiliate programs in the network.
After completing the signing up process, you are then ready to start making money online by selling other peoples product. Now you may be wondering how you actually make money? Well, there are several ways for you to make money as an affiliate marketer, but it all depends on the type of affiliate marketing program you signed up for.
Generally, affiliate marketing programs pay their affiliate marketers in any of these 3 ways: pay-per-click (PPC), pay-per-sale (PPS), or pay-per-lead (PPL). In pay-per-click affiliate marketing, the affiliate marketer is paid whenever he directs traffic to the merchants site (no sale is required here for the affiliate marketer to get paid). Pay-per-sale and Pay-per-lead affiliate marketing programs work quite differently. In Pay-per-sale programs, the affiliate marketer only gets paid whenever his referrals convert into actual sales. In typical Pay-per-sale affiliate programs, the affiliate marketer usually gets paid 15 – 20% commission for each referral that converts into a sale. Pay-per-lead affiliate programs work in a similar way to pay-per-sale programs, although in this case, the affiliate marketer is usually paid a fixed amount whenever his referral converts into a lead for the merchant or company. Pay-per-lead affiliate programs are usually offered by companies providing a service rather than selling products.
Also, some affiliate marketing programs are two-tier programs in the sense that the affiliate marketer is encouraged to recommend other affiliates or intending affiliates to sign up with the program (in a similar fashion to multiple-level-marketing or MLM programs). In such affiliate marketing programs, the affiliate marketer is not only be paid for the traffic or sales he direct to the merchants site, but also for the traffic or sales directed by the affiliates who signed up with the program through his recommendation.
Yet another way of earning more money through affiliate marketing is through residual affiliate marketing programs. Residual affiliate marketing programs are affiliate programs where the affiliate marketer gets paid several times for as long as the merchant keeps the customer the affiliate has referred to his site, i.e. you only need to refer the customer to the merchant’s website once and you continually get paid for as long as the referred person remains a loyal customer. In one form of residual affiliate program, the affiliate marketer gets a paid a commission every time the referred customer buys something on the merchants website. In another form of residual affiliate marketing program, the affiliate marketer gets paid a percentage every month for as long as the referred customer keeps buying products on the merchant’s website.
With lots of options available and multiple ways to make money, affiliate marketing is arguably the most popular and easiest way to start making money online selling other peoples products. As to how much money one can make through affiliate marketing actually depends on the know-how, the resolve and the dedication of the affiliate marketer. A dedicated and hardworking affiliate marketer would certainly make more money from the program than affiliate marketers who just sign up with a program only to forget about it later on. Real success in affiliate marketing can only be achieved when dedication and hardwork are backed up with KNOW-HOW. An affiliate marketer must be well equipped with the right information to succeed. There is really no substitute for knowledge. The more you know about affiliate marketing the easier the road to your affiliate marking success.