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What Is Affiliate Marketing? Explained.


Affiliate Marketing is a process where Affiliate Marketer (Affiliate) used a service, liked it and now is letting others know that it is good while earning a commision for a completed “action” through his link.

That how affiliate marketing was in early days. Becoming an affiliate for a brand meant that you know what the product or a service is about, that you personally tried it and since you had a great experience with it, you are now promoting it to others.

How is it now?

Not the same. Affiliate marketing has grown to a huge industry (it is estimated to reach $6.5bn by 2020) and since the level of entry is so low, everybody wants to jump in. So you see a lot of affiliates promoting services they never used or even do not exactly know what they do.

What Are Affiliate Networks?

Affiliate networks are websites where brands which want to be promoted through affiliates gather. Big networks are Commission Junction, ShareASale, Maxbounty (and much more). Affiliate Networks act as a middleman, providing a platform for Affiliates and Brands/Products to meet and start collaborating. These networks take a commission (also known as the haircut) on any successful sale or lead that affiliate makes.

Who Are Advertisers?

Advertisers are the companies that what to be promoted. They provide pictures, banners, links, email templates etc. through the affiliate network to make the life of affiliate easier. Most importantly they provide payouts. Let’s have a look at some of the most popular ones:

  • CPA – Cost Per Action. Means that affiliate receives money for a particular action, mostly a purchase.
  • CPL – Cost Per Lead. Affiliate receives a small payout if somebody subscribes through his link. For example, just leaves an email.

Who Are Publishers?

Publishers are Affiliates. People who promote the advertisers through different means like websites, emails, mobile ads, direct linking etc. The goal of a publisher it to make a commission.

What is your experience with affiliate marketing? Do you have a favorite affiliate network?


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