When we start out in affiliate marketing, it’s fine to sign up for only one or two affiliate programs. Then over time your skills develop and at some point you start looking around to see if there are any other companies offer best affiliate program. This article will help you by offering more choices.
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The top 7 reasons to start looking around for other affiliate programs are:
1) You want different products / services to offer your clients.
2) You want to see if there are better (higher paying) commissions out there for you.
3) You want programs that operate in the same country as your website visitors.
4) You want programs that pay out in a specific currency that suites you better.
5) You want to see if you can get accepted on the top tier or “status” affiliate programs.
7) Your competitors offer more choice and variety and you would like to do the same.
So which ones are the right match for you and your website visitors?
1) Are you looking for a general goods program or something really specific?
The market leader in a general goods program is the Amazon Affiliates program. They offer a huge range of physical and digital products in the one spot.
There are however niche specific affiliate programs that might work for you better.
2) What sort of commission do you want to make?
As an affiliate marketer, you only get paid for every commission you make. As a result of this you need to know how much money goes into your pocket.
Traditionally physical products have the lowest commission rates of around 4% – 10%.
Ebooks and online courses however can pay around 10-75% commission.
3) Which products are a better match with the needs of your website visitor?
Being an online business, some websites are best catered for digital products and on-line courses.
Some websites are specialists in attracting customers in their local area (local marketing). I know an Accountant who pays a commission for each lead referred to him in a set geographic area (in marketing we call this geographic micro targeting).
Take some time to think about your customers and the reasons WHY they come to your website and the types of products / services they would like to purchase from you.
After you have decided on all of these things…… now for the big question
So Which Company Is Best For You?
General Products & Department Store Affiliate Program
Amazon Affiliates Program
The market leader in this space is Amazon Affiliates program. Amazon stocks a HUGE variety of physical products and digital products. They have a MASSIVE selection in almost every niche you can think of.
The two biggest positives that Amazon have are:
1) They have the largest range.
They literally have a product for every niche you can think of…. and even better than that, they have products for niches within niches.
2) They are just really good at converting website visitors into being “shoppers”.
The biggest negatives that Amazon have are:
1) The commission cookie is only 24 hours (this is VERY short)
2) The payout commission rates are quite low by industry standards – anything from 0% – 10% so you have to pick your topic (niche) wisely.
EBAY Partner Network - EBAY
Believe it or not, EBAY actually offer an affiliate program as well. It’s called the EBAY Partner Network.
It is free to join which is great.
The two biggest positives that the EBAY Partner Network have are:
1) MASSIVE range
2) Really good at converting website visitors into purchasers.
The Biggest Negatives I Have With Ebay Are:
1) They only pay commission on the fees that EBAY charge the seller, NOT the final purchase price.
So if EBAY only charges the seller $1 and the commission is 50%, then you only receive $0.50c. So it’s hard to make a HUGE amount of money off the affiliate program directly.
Walmart also offers an affiliate program.
This is great for people who want choice and control over who they buy products / services from.
The program is free to join which is great.
The three biggest positives are:
1) The range. They offer a full department store level of variety.
2) They are a trusted brand many website customers will feel comfortable purchasing from them. This is especially true for older shoppers who have spent a lifetime shopping in the department store.
3) They offer a three (3) day cookie. As an affiliate marketer, these cookies are “gold”. The longer the cookie is, the better that’s for sure.
The two biggest negatives are:
1) The commission is really low. Between 1% – 4%
2) Some people don’t want to purchase items from Walmart.
EXTERNAL AFFILIATE PROGRAM (Outsourced)
An external affiliate program or “affiliate program” is one where companies pay a fee for external programs to manage their affiliate program for them.
The best part about this is that the affiliate programs themselves source the companies and products to promote. Some larger ones have TENS OF THOUSANDS of merchants and MILLIONS of products pre-approved and ready to go on their books.
As a result of this, all you have to do is find a company that you like, apply to join their program and when you are approved… sit back and look around their site until you find companies that you would like to promote.
These are actually my preferred companies to deal with.
The reason being is that the company is in the business of running affiliate programs. They are more professional and tend to offer advanced reporting and “dashboards” to help affiliate marketers keep track of their cookies and links and how much money they have earnt.
They can also act as an intermediary in case there is a dispute over payout commissions with the final vendor.
Some most well-known companies are:
They are arguably one of the oldest and most known and trusted affiliate marketing program around.
They have a great reputation for digital products. They have now moved into physical goods.
The commissions vary depending on the products and the vendor. Physical goods are low and digital goods can be up to 75%. So look around and see what items are a great match for you and your business.
Click Bank are one of the very few affiliate programs to offer training. The call it Click Bank University. It is a fee for service (paid) program.
The biggest negatives are:
1) They have LOTS of digital products but are weak with physical goods.
2) I don’t actually like their interface.
CJ Commission Junction (CJ Affiliate by Conversant)
CJ or Commission Junction has been around for decades and is a very well respected organization.
Because it has been around so long it has a long list of big name brands and products on its books.
The Two Biggest Positives
1) Many well-known brands & “big name” brands use Commission Junction as their external affiliate program of choice.
2) There are no special website requirements to sign up. This is a major advantage of existing businesses who want to offer their existing clients some extra products and services.
The Two Biggest Negatives
1) The range is not the same as Amazon
2) Not everyone will know the products / companies listed and you will probably have to write product reviews that specifically match each product in order to make any money.
Share A Sale
Share A Sale is really large, well-known and trusted external affiliate program. I have many friends who are professional affiliate marketers and use Share A Sale exclusively.
Share A Sale has a great range of vendors to choose from.
Two main positives of Share A Sale
1) They are large and have a high level of trust in the affiliate marketing industry.
2) They have a loyal list of merchants who are only exclusively available via Share A Sale. This is good to know for any obscure niches who are looking for quality products / services to promote. If you are having trouble finding goods to promote – try Share A Sale and see if they have a solution for you!
The two main negatives are:
1) The dashboard is old and not as user-friendly as the more modern, updated dashboards that other competitors have.
2) It’s hard to ask direct questions to merchants. Some niches are really small and you have specific questions that need to be answered in order to offer value to your clients. This could be a communication barrier for some affiliate marketers.
The top things that you are looking for are:
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