Affiliate Marketing - Opportunities for Website Owners

Affiliate marketing is an Internet-based practice involving website owners and online merchants. The website owner is expected to have an audience of visitors to the site and the online merchant wants its product and/or service to be exposed to those visitors. By engaging in revenue share, the merchant is able to incentivize the website owner to place ads of the merchant's products or services on the owner's website.

Affiliate marketing takes on many forms & variations and the analysis of the industry can be quite detailed and possibly confusing. The focus of this article is to highlight some affiliate marketing examples from the standpoint of money making opportunities for website owners. In advertising and affiliate marketing parlance, the website owner is referred to as a publisher and as an affiliate. The merchant is referrred to as the advertiser.

The website owner's money earning methods include:

  • Pay Per Click - For each click of the merchant's ad on the affiliate's website, the affiliate gets a compensation amount which is subject to the product or service being promoted and the commission structure.
  • Pay Per Sale - For each sale, the affiliate gets a percentage or commission for compensation.
  • Pay Per Lead - For each potential client registering at the merchant's site, the affiliate earns compensation.

There are also Internet marketers who engage in affiliate programs. Their primary objective is to create websites that directly promote affiliate products and services. Contrast this with website owners who may wish to engage in affiliate programs by placing affiliate ads on their website in addition to other revenue opportunities such as Google AdSense advertising - see my Affiliate Programs blog entry.

The blogger's website is another type of publisher site where affiliate programs are popular. Depending on the topics in the blog, it may or may not be suitable attraction for affiliate programs. This point applies in general for any website engaged in affiliate programs.

Is affiliate marketing easy money? Define easy. Factors for success include:

  • Traffic volume to the publisher site.
  • Finding quality affiliate products and services.
  • Match of affiliate products and services to the topics in the publisher site.
  • Establishing trust with the publisher site's readership.
  • Having a readership open to purchasing.

It is beyond the scope of this article to cover the many strategies for achieving the above factors for success. Readers are encouraged to further research the options available to affiliate marketers for revenue earning success.

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