Category Archives: Affiliate Internet Marketing Tip

The Basics to Internet Marketing

Do you want to expand your business online?  Marketing online can be easy if you learn the basics of internet marketing. Let us break down the what you need to do for successful internet marketing.

First, I always recommend doing all your research before you begin.  I cannot even stress the importance of researching your the market you are going to sell in.  So many individuals that I help start their businesses going into internet businesses with a blindfold over their eyes.  When you do this, you are just digging a hole for yourself.  One that you do not need.

You need to plan your strategy.  Begin by looking at other top businesses in your market.  See what works for them.  What tactics are they using?  How do they prepare their headlines?  What type of home page design are they using to attract traffic?  Is there little or no text on their home page?

I learned from my own personal experience that too much text draws traffic away.  For me that was a problem because when I write I like to input a lot of detail, so people understand what they are reading and they can have a clear picture of the concept.

However, when I was creating my businesses all this detail on my web site was scaring people away, so I did my research, observed how the top businesses in my market.  Looked at how they were advertising their products and tried to use similar tactics.   You always have to make sure that the material you are providing on your site is useful and related to your business.  My advice: brief, blunt, and to the point.

Things to remember:

  1. Make sure your domain name relates to the products you are selling.  For example if you are, selling greeting cards use a name like
  1. You need to make sure that you have many links on your site.  However, do not put any links for the hell of it.  Make sure that they are related to your business and not offensive to anyone.  Also, get those sites to link you.  Email them and tell them that you would like to swap links.
  1. Submit your sites to all the top sites like google, yahoo MSN, AOL Search, and AskJeeves. Use a program like traffic blazer will help you promote and optimize your site and it does not cost much.  It takes you through the optimization process systematically.  They are many programs that do the same.  Do not get ripped off by companies that tried to sell you these programs for mega amounts of money.  I only paid 29.95 and it works like a charm!
  2. If you are redesigning or starting from scratch and you have to use a brand-new domain for some reason, you can expect to wait a good 9-12 months before your site will show up in Google for any keyword phrases that are important to you.
  3. An important factor is that you need to make you business design stand out so that the site is effective.  Make unique, realistic and related to your product.
  4. Make sure the information on your website will attract people to website and make them want to come back. Ask yourself the question: Why should anyone come to my website? If you cannot find a good answer, then start building content.
  1. Long pages can slow down the loading of your page and many searches Engines will not index all the way down your pages. You want search

Engines to read all the good stuff on your pages, so you can rank well for

Important keywords.

  1. Make sure you have important Information that matters for Your Website. You need to provide your visitors with the information they need to complete the sale. If they cannot find what they are looking for, they will likely just move on to the next site.  Although keen customers may email you for more information, most will not take the time. If you do not have the essential information on your website, they are just going move on.
  1. Make sure your website contains contact Information: People want to know how to contact you if they need. Provide an email address, not just an information request form.  Many people will not take the time to fill out a form.
  1. If you are shipping products, please let people know the expected costs and indicate which countries you will ship too. If you cannot provide shipping costs to each country, include a note about how people can find out how much shipping costs to their country. You should also let people know how long it will generally take to receive their items.
  1. People want to know what you are going to do with their personal information once they give it to you. If you share information with anybody else regarding your customers – tell them so.
  1. Have a returns policy and post it clearly on your website.  How long do people have to return items? Who is responsible for shipping on returns? Does this vary depending on whether it was your error or the customer’s error? Do you offer refunds or exchanges? Who pays for the extra shipping on returns?

13. Make sure you have plenty of reviews on your website. I put plenty of reviews on my site.  This shows customers who have received results from your product.  This helps people feel safe and they are more likely to purchase your product.

14. You have probably heard this repeatedly but it is worth repeating – people have to see you your message about 7 times before they buy. The biggest mistake you can make is to try to sell your product on the first contact alone.

15. It is no secret that successful businesses make up to 80% of their sales from previous customers. Why? Because people who have bought from you before are much more likely to buy from you again (they know you, they trust you, they were happy with your product).

16. Begin a Business Blog. Want links to your site? Begin a business blog on your website. If you offer excellent content and regular industry comment, people are likely to link to it, increasing your site’s Page Rank.

17. Using e-mail to keep your existing customers. Once you get some online visitors, you will want to build a relationship with them. The way you do this is by asking for their e-mail address and permission to send them a monthly e-mail newsletter. Even in this day of spam overload, people do want information via e-mail — so long as they trust you not to spam them, that is, send them e-mails without their permission. Now Remember the traffic id the most important without the traffic you won’t earn the big bucks, so focus on the traffic then the worry about selling the product.  No traffic (people) no money!

Secret Tips about Our Internet:

The search engines are looking for pages that best fit the keyword phrase someone types into their little search box. If those “someone’s” are typing in search words that relate to what your site offers, then they are most likely members of your target audience. You need to optimize your site to meet *their* needs. If you do not know who your target audience is, then you need to find out one way or another. Look for studies online that might provide demographic information, and visit other sites, communities, or forums where your target audience might hang out and listen to what they discuss. This information will be crucial to your resulting website design, keyword research, and copywriting.

The phrases you think your target market might be searching for may very well be incorrect. To find the optimal phrases to optimize for, use research tools such as Keyword Discovery, Word tracker, Google AdWords, and Yahoo Search Marketing data. Compile lists of the most relevant phrases for your site, and choose a few different ones for every page. Never shoot for general keywords such as “travel” or “vacation,” as they are rarely (if ever) indicative of what your site is really about.

Your research may uncover undiscovered areas of interest or ways of categorizing your products/services that you may wish to add to your site. For instance, let us say your site sells toys. There are numerous ways you could categorize and lay out your site so that people will find the toys they are looking for. Are people looking for toys to fit their child’s stage of development? On the other hand, are they more likely to be seeking specific brands of toys? Most likely, your keyword research will show you that people are looking for toys in many different ways. Your job is to make sure that your site’s navigation displays the various ways of searching. Make sure you have links to specific-brand pages as well as specific age ranges, specific types of toys, etc.

The search engines cannot fill out forms, cannot search your site, cannot read JavaScript links and menus, and cannot interpret graphics and Flash. This does not mean that you cannot use these things on your site; you most certainly can! However, you do need to provide alternate means of navigating your site as necessary. If you have only a drop-down sequence of menus to choose a category or a brand of something, the search engine crawlers will never find those resulting pages. You will need to make sure that you always have some form of HTML links in the main navigation on every page which link to the top-level pages of your site. From those pages, you will need to have further HTML links to the individual product/service pages. (Please note that HTML links do NOT have to be text-only links. There is nothing wrong with graphical image navigation that is wrapped in standard <a href> tags, as the search engines can follow image links just fine.)

Submit Your Site to Key Directories, since a link from a directory will help your ranking — and get you traffic. Be sure to list your site in the free Open Directory Project (, overseen by human editors. This hierarchical directory provides content feeds to all the major search engines. In addition, it provides a link to your site from an information hub that Google deems important.  Yahoo! Directory is another important directory to be listed in, though their search results recently have not been featuring their own directory as prominently.

Submit Your Site to Industry Sites and Specialized Directories. You may find some directories focused on particular industries that relate to your business.

Good luck!

The Top 50 Affiliate Marketing Programs that Can Make You Rich

Many people have heard about affiliate marketing programs.  The rumors have it that if you find the right affiliate programs you can make a lot of money.  Is that true?   Yes, it is true.  I have a friend who belongs to an affiliate-marketing program that sells wedding merchandise.  He found the right program and established himself a website; set it up the right way and now all his financial income comes from his affiliate marketing program.  Amazing huh!

Many people are aware of what affiliate-marketing programs are, but they are unsure of what the basics of affiliate marketing entail and where to begin.  So let us start by asking the question what exactly is an affiliate-marketing program?

An affiliate marketing program is basically a revenue sharing arrangement in which advertisers (merchants) distribute sales collateral (banners, text links, etc.) and sign up partners, called affiliates, who agree to display the advertisements on their web sites in exchange for a commission on any leads or sales that result from actions derived from those advertisements.

Therefore, really, affiliate marketing goes back to marketing from way back when. It is the second oldest business there is: “If you sell something for me, I’ll give you a percentage”. It is simply the use of a web site to sell products or to sign up customers in a way that has been used for centuries!

Numerous names which mean affiliate marketing are:

  • Associate Programs
  • Internet Affiliate Marketing
  • Direct Marketing
  • Performance Marketing
  • Partner Marketing
  • Pay-For-Performance Programs
  • Referral Programs

In affiliate marketing programs, an affiliate earns a commission from a merchant for generating a desired action, such as a lead or sale, for a merchant that the affiliate is promoting. The merchant provides its ads (also called creative) to affiliates and offers a pre-determined commission for each action it wants visitors to take. Affiliates place a tracking code for these ads on their websites, in search listings or in their email campaigns. Whenever a visitor uses these links to generate the desired action on the merchant site, these online actions are tracked and recorded by a reliable tracking program. When the desired action is verified, the affiliate is paid a commission for that verified desired action.

Affiliate recruitment is the most important and the most time-consuming element of building a successful affiliate-marketing program. Identifying who the best affiliates are for your site, persuading them to join your program and giving them compelling reasons to stay with you and sell, are all critical elements of success in this channel. We believe the key to a successful affiliate program is recruiting high quality affiliates that have contextually relevant sites to yours and who have proved records of accomplishment driving traffic to programs they belong.

The top affiliate programs are businesses whose model is based on affiliate revenue Primary – Those affiliates already successfully working in your industry position.

Secondary – Sites whose content is complementary to your site’s products who can be motivated to begin promoting your products on their sites each type is part of the success formula.  It is the synergy of all three that create a consistent and balanced program. Our proactive, creative, powerful, concentrated approach includes; Recruitment through virtually every facet of both your niche market and mainstream markets.

The top 50-affiliate marketing programs that are the most popular and you can make the most money from are:

  1. DentalPlans – Discount Dental Programs – Top partner in March made $11,702 – This is one of the web is best converting offers because up to 75% of Americans currently have no form of dental coverage. Commission $44 – $50 per sale, high conversion rates too.
  2. zZounds – Musical Instruments & DJ Gear – Top partner in December made $9,840 – Best payouts in the musical instruments and DJ equipment market place! The new, improved zZounds program offers 6% to 10.8% commission with 45-day cookies. Free data feed.
  3. The Affiliate Classroom – There will never be a better time to start focusing on your own affiliate success than RIGHT NOW! Click to discover Three Dynamic Free & Low Cost Ways to Start Learning and Earning More Today: 1) Free Magazine 2) Two Week Trial 3) Great Affiliate Program.
  4. NetQuote – Top Partner made $23,920 in January – Netquote offers “One Stop Insurance Shopping” for all types of insurance including Auto, Health, Home Owners, Renters, Business, Group Medical and Life Insurance.
  5. Always White Teeth Whitening Affiliate Program Great commissions & conversions! Everyone wants a brighter smile and Always White professional teeth whitening is one of the hottest offers on the net! Now you can earn great commissions on this Billion-dollar market.
  1.  Bill Bam – A wide range of themed plush toys, dolls, collectible cards, action figures and limited edition collectibles. Promote items that are not only prizes as toys but also as collectible items by adults. A growing product range means you will have a constant stream of fresh products to promote to your site users that will keep them coming back for more and better opportunities to make money.
  1. Century Fitness – Customers of Century have always relied on expert advice and selection. With the launch of, people can rely on the same great products and services offered through one of the fastest growing affiliate programs for ‘Total Fitness’ products. Affiliates get expert tools and tips needed to convert websites into moneymaking machines.
  2. DeluxeGrills – People love their grills and DeluxeGrills has one of the largest selections available online. Grills are becoming more and more popular, and their popularity could result in your success and profit. Only a $10 threshold for payout and an extended cookie for better opportunities at earning good commissions.
  3. Difference Maker – Bag the Elephant – Steve Kaplan is the Difference Maker, offering straightforward, actionable, highly valuable sales tips and business advice to management professionals through Difference Maker paid newsletters, Rock Solid / Squeeze the Tube / Just Desserts e-books, tele-seminars, consultations as well as his new, highly acclaimed, hardcover book, “Bag the Elephant – How to Win and Keep Big Clients”. Take advantage of our ninety return day cookie and make the most commissions with Difference Maker – Business Impact Now! Products and services.
  4. DriveWerks – Enter an area of online shopping often overlooked by affiliates. People in general, clean, care for and maintain their car far more frequently than any other product they will ever buy. A lot of money is spent doing this. Enthusiasts and amateur mechanics will always be looking to upgrade their tools, service equipment and cars. Tap into this market and make sales focusing on every area of the automotive retail and maintenance business.
  5. Emitations – Fantastic 15% commissions on all sales on a wide variety of jewelry. It is the place for Hollywood and celebrity inspired jewelry designs allowing fans to buy versions of the latest jewelry items worn by their favorite music, film or TV stars – at an affordable price. Great conversion incentives and excellent customer service keep customers happy and buying.
  6. Everything Home – Being a partner with can be very much like running your own store, and being paid for selling those products. The major difference is you do not have any of the risks or worries associated with actually running a store, taking payments or serving customers. All the frustration is taken care of, you just make money. Extended cookie life with a commission structure that rewards.
  7. Forzieri – Italian brands including Gucci, Giorgio Armani, Zoppini and over 50 more. Bags, wallets, ties, watches, jewelry, gifts, pens, corporate office, home design and much more. Founded in 1998, the Forzieri Partnership Program offers first class revenue opportunities through distinguished commission rates, notable affiliate support, and a partnership opportunity with a leader in Internet fashion and refined Italian style.
  8. GoodTimes – A leading vertically integrated multimedia consumer product marketing company. Featuring products like Billy Blank’s Tai Bo. And Boot Camp? – George Foreman’s Grill? And more. The company identifies and develops a diverse range of innovative branded consumer, lifestyle, and entertainment products, and markets these products through multiple direct-to-consumer and retail distribution channels. Products target the fitness, weight-loss, skin-care, hair-care, vitamin, house wares, inspirational, and family entertainment markets.
  9. GreatSkin – Innovative, active, and effective skincare lines formulated for anti-aging, acne treatments, sensitive skin, pre & post laser/ plastic surgery, UV ray protection, and rosacea. Technology, research, ingredients, and science combine to make products that enhance people’s beauty and appeal. Everyone wants to look their best so sales are easily converted.
  10. JobsInSports Members can search for full time, part time and internship opportunities with professional sports teams in the NBA, NFL, NHL, and MLB as well as a major sports industry players like NIKE, TBS, REEBOK, PGA Tour, NIKE Tour, and Sports Illustrated in this sports focused jobs network. Lots of resources, solid commissions, and a growing industry mean that your commission will grow along with it.
  11. KegWorks – Draft Beer Equipment, Bar Accessories, Bar Furniture, Compact Fridges, Concession Equipment and Pro Cookware. This program is ideal for niche markets and adult and entertainment oriented sites. Creative banners and marketing provided to increase sales and commissions.
  12. Left on Main – Distinctive modern home furnishings, kitchen accessories, lighting fixtures and tableware. Products that bring homes a distinctive feel reflecting modern life. Year-long cumulative bonuses, data feeds, and residual payments make this program a winner.
  13. Mondera – Winner, winner, winner. This program has won numerous awards and accolades for its outstanding affiliate program. High class sparkles and high priced jewelry means high commissions and big payouts. Diamonds are the specialty of Mondera, and it is one of the most respected names in the industry. There are data feeds, newsletters, banners, and much more to help you succeed.
  14. My Celtic Jeweler – Offering a wide selecting of authentic hand made Celtic Irish jewelry. Including the new grange and claddagh styles and family crest jewelry. Running on two networks to allow you to select your preferred system and drive sales through data feeds, coupons and more.
  15. Mycenturygym – Mirrors do not lie and fitness products make things more believable. Martial Arts, Boxing, and Total Fitness Products for the entire family. Sell the latest in fitness products and get support from the world’s leading fitness products supplier. Endless products and rotating marketing campaigns keep your content fresh and appealing. Commission structures rewards sites that sell and promote. Join the fitness craze today.
  16. Pandasoftware – Everyday there is a new computer virus. Everyday people are looking to protect their computers and information, which means that everyday you can be paid. PandaSoftware is a global leader in computer virus protection solutions. Software that gives peace-of-mind and is easy to use is an easy sell. Integrate selling virus solutions into your site and make money from every sale.
  17. Pierced Body – Belly Button Rings, nipple shields, tongue rings, Silver Jewelry, toe rings, spiked leather jewelry. The demand for these products continues to climb. People want to be different in many different ways… their desire to express themselves means money for you.
  18. Shopster – Shopster is a private label retailer, affiliate drop shipping type concept that uses guaranteed cookie free, parasite resistant tracking. The Shopster system allows you to select products you want to sell – at prices you set – within a complete E-Commerce Site. Pretty much like a co-brand but even check out takes place on the affiliate site so all sales are recorded through the system and customer date, orders, and so on are stored on the affiliate side.
  19. United Shades – All the big names in fashion sunglasses: D&G, Givenchy, Gucci, Oakley, Versace and dozens more. United Shades has been selling sunglasses for over 75 years! Located in Rome, with immediate access to all the biggest brands and all the latest styles. Discounts, free sunglasses, high commissions, fabulous customer service, and order processing result in happy customers and big payouts.
  20. Vegas Experts – Sports tips/picks for gamblers across US sports. NFL, NHL, NBA, Boxing and more. The buyer only pays if the tip/pick wins – a system that everyone is happy with and gives you seriously high commissions with a 0% payout threshold. It does not get much better than this.
  21. Western Union – A global brand that enjoys one of the highest recognition rates in the world. Put their powerful brand and support to work for you. Sell Western Union Money Transfers, Western Union Telegram Services and Western Union Quick Collect bill payment Services and make money on every sale.
  22. Animal Den – Attracting the traffic of animal lovers? Then this program is for you. Animal Den is the animal lover’s gift shop. Specializing in products printed with specific animals, pets, dog breeds and wildlife. Thousands of products that are sure to please your most discriminating visitors and you earn 10% on every sale. Great products, top service, five stars.
  23. Brian Tracy – Brian Tracy is the most listened to audio author on personal and business success in the world today. His fast-moving talks and seminars on leadership, sales, managerial effectiveness and business strategy are loaded with powerful, proven ideas and strategies that people can immediately apply to get better results in every area. You will earn up to 30% commission on all products sold through your affiliate links.
  24. 21st Century Insurance – 21st is consistently a top affiliate program in the Auto Insurance category and generates one of the highest EPC returns in all of Commission Junction. The 21st quote process is fast, easy and free. 21st has recently raised their lead commissions, paying up to $6 for every quote lead!
  25. 911 Health Shop – Link up with today and earn 12% commission on each sale! You will want to be affiliated with this leading source of premium nutritional supplements at wholesale prices. Customers shop here for all their health needs – vitamins, supplements, magnetic therapy, children’s health products, and pet health care. Also, “As Seen on TV” nutritional breakthroughs and hot new products virtually not available anywhere else on the ‘net!
  26. ClubMom – ClubMom is the national membership organization for moms—started because moms raise our nation’s kids strengthen our communities and drive our economy. Participate in this program and earn up to $2.00 for every ClubMom member that you refer to his or her web site.
  27. The Company Store – Now you can offer your consumers the chance to experience the superior quality of Bed, Bath, and Home Decor and Apparel products from The Company Store®! We are best known for our comforters, pillows and other bedding basics as well as unique and exclusive sheets. Our comforters are available in three comfort levels, depending on your local climate and seasonal use. Choose from over 100 different styles, colors, fills and sizes.
  28. Digital River OneNetwork – Sell today is hottest software titles available, with commissions up to 75%! The Digital River OneNetwork has all the tools and resources at your disposal to be highly successful, and with over 25,000 software titles available in the direct purchase and try-before-you-buy formats, your shoppers will find everything they want and desire.
  29. Domestications – Now you can offer your consumers the chance to experience the wide variety of products that Domestications® has to offer! No matter what mood your shoppers are in – trendy, traditional, and luxurious or budget conscious, Domestications® is America’s Authority in Home Fashions ™.
  30. FootSmart – is one of the most successful shoe and lower body healthcare merchants in Commission Junction. With our program, you will profit from a commission structure that begins at 12% and with performance increases all the way to 17.5% of sales. Our average order value is very high and our return rate is extremely low…all of which translates into unlimited earning potential for targeted affiliates!
  31. – Now you can collaborate with the premier online destination for buying brand-name golf items! Whether your customers are just ‘putting’ around or are seasoned pros you can offer them access to the most popular brands in the industry and earn commissions on every sale!
  32. International Male – With the International Male® Affiliate Program you can offer your shopper’s one the hottest selections of men’s clothing around, plus original and exclusive designs you can only find here. In the business of web fashion, great merchandise translates into big sales. You cannot lose.
  33. Irvs Luggage Warehouse and Executive Essentials – Irv’s Luggage Warehouse carries the top brand names in luggage that your customers are looking for at the lowest prices around. Executive Essentials features over 1600 products and offers the finest in pens unique executive gifts desk accessories leather business cases PDA accessories time management systems and more.
  34. JiggerBug – With the Affiliate, program “JiggerBucks”, you’ll earn high commissions for EACH member you refer. Members enjoy unlimited audio books delivered directly to their door. Shipping is always free and there are never any late fees.
  35. LifeScript Vitamins – Collaborate with the fastest-growing health and wellness company online – – the premier provider of personalized supplement programs. Earn a generous commission for every new subscriber you send who makes a purchase. And YOUR customers’ only will receive 50% off their first purchase – a discount that will convert to the max!
  36. – The real estate market has seen tremendous growth recently and it is time for you to benefit from that growth. MortageRates4Less is one of the premier affiliate programs on the internet today. This program consistently performs with high conversion rates and a healthy $25 per lead commission.
  37. National Geographic Online Store – You and your customers likely already know National Geographic as the highly respected international media educational and advocacy authority. You may not have known the National Geographic Store offers wonderful products that open the world to your customers.
  38. Niche Retail – Niche Retail is a “Low Price Leader” on virtually every product in their network of targeted vertical niche web sites. The Niche Retail affiliate programs include the following: – – – – – – Elite Car Seats – – – Suunto Watches.
  39. Quicken Loans – Quicken Loans® is the leading online home mortgage lender, voted “Best of the Web” by Forbes, Money and PC magazines, and offers simple, convenient and quick home loans.  Did you know that visitors to Quicken Loans could receive a free online rate quote? Send your visitors to our site and you will be paid on any qualified leads that come through.
  40. Silhouettes – Silhouettes® is the authority on fashion and style for women sizes 12W-34W. Combining the perfect blend of style, fit and quality, Silhouettes® celebrates women of all sizes by offering the latest, fashionable choices that complement the demands and lifestyle of today’s woman.
  41. Snapfish – With over fifteen million members and more than 200 million photos online Snapfish has been rated the number one online photo service in surveys from PC Data and received top quality ratings from Popular Photography and Yahoo! Internet Life.
  42. Talk121 ChatDollars – Talk121 is the company ChatDollars is the affiliate program. This one pays out VERY well – five different ways to earn on lead referrals sales sub-sales referrals and more! Talk121 is the hottest phone chat line in the nation offering a 60-minute free trial. Easy to be successful with this one!
  43. – has the strongest tax-debt help affiliate program in the industry. With the strong conversions, our application receives our high payout per lead the increasing need of a professional to help deal with the IRS and the proactive management of Partner Centric your opportunity to earn lots of money will be easy to attain.
  44. Undergear – That is right, now you can offer your consumers the only “uncut guide to men’s fashion underwear”! You can count on us to offer a tantalizing selection of the hottest in men’s underwear and workout wear, irresistible goodies that cybershoppers will be hard-pressed to turn down, original and exclusive designs you can only find here. In the business of web fashion, great merchandise translates into big sales. You cannot lose.

An introduction to affiliate programs

Affiliate programs can help a burgeoning Web site thrive, bring customers to the merchant and supply the needs of the customer.

Without the affiliate Web site, the customer perhaps would not have tried to buy the merchandise from the merchant. In other words, the affiliate Web site is the “middle man” that suggests to the customer, “You might want to look at this merchant for the items you are reading about on my Web site.”

The process of joining an affiliate program is free and available for application at numerous Web sites, including Amazon, Google and PayPal, for example. The Internet marketer is judged by the content his or her Web site has to offer. A well planned and designed Web site stands a good chance of being accepted into an affiliate program.

Some helpful advice for strong content: Avoid copyright laws and publish public domain works from government agencies; use the Web site to offer personalized definitions of terms of a certain profession; or publish articles from other writers at their consent. In short, make the Web site look original.

Once granted acceptance into an affiliate program, the affiliate Web site will begin to earn commission money if the site directs a customer, who buys merchandise, to the merchant Web site. The commission rates vary from 1 percent for high-priced items from established vendors to approximately 50 percent for online products such as e-Books.

For example, if the affiliate Web site operates under a 10 percent commission rate and the customer purchases $300 worth of merchandise at the vendor’s Web site it was linked to, the affiliate site makes an easy $30.

Some merchants pay per lead, which means they pay if the affiliate site simply directs the consumer to their Web site. Others pay if the affiliate Web site displays an advertising banner.

Affiliate Web sites are given specially formatted URLs they use to link to the affiliate provider (either the merchant or a third-party service such as Google) to track the traffic.

Anyone thinking of becoming an Internet marketer must first consider the potential risks of such an operation.

Affiliate program scams do exist, particularly from merchants that are not well-known or operate with the minimal margin. They use the affiliate Web sites for free advertising, never intending to pay and knowing there can be no recourse.

Make sure a contact number exists from the merchant for payment questions. Be cautious of commission rates that are too high because the merchants are most likely only trying to lure as many unsuspecting affiliate sites as possible. If a lack of communication exists – for example, e-mails and phone calls are not returned – cease operations immediately as an affiliate to that Web site.

The amount of quality marketing work necessary to maintain a profitable Web site must also be considered. The vendor supplies the potential product, but the affiliate Web master must be creative in marketing to lure the customer to the provider’s site, other than hoping the customer will simply click on the ad link and buy merchandise.

The positives outweigh the negatives if the process is planned and operated efficiently by the affiliate site. Strong Web site content and proper research into which affiliate programs to join will make the difference.

The affiliate Web master must realize these advantages: This is a free process and you do not have to make the product; you simply sell it. Furthermore, the affiliate (working in his or her home) can have multiple streams of income, albeit a small percentage in most cases, but that can add up to a profitable venture.