Affiliate Marketing Primer by Rosalind Gardner - HTML preview
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Affiliate marketing is a Partnership or Joint Venture with an online merchant to sell their products and/or services in exchange for remuneration.
Your affiliate link is coded with a special ID which is unique to you. When a sale is made through your special link, the merchant credits that sale to you. Then you just wait for the check to arrive!
There are HUGE benefits to promoting affiliate programs with your own home-based Internet business...
- No Production Costs - The cost to develop and produce a new product is prohibitive for almost anyone who wants to start a home-based business. With affiliate programs, production costs aren't an issue. The product has been developed and proven - all on the merchant's nickel.
- Low Cost Set-Up - Compared with building a brick and mortar store, starting a home-based Internet business is relatively cheap. You probably already have a desk, Internet-connected computer and word-processing software, which is all the equipment you may need.
- No Fees for Joining or Licenses to Buy - I often compare doing business as an affiliate, with distributing a line of products in the real world. The biggest difference is that the distributor must often pay for a license to distribute products within a limited geographic region. Affiliate programs, on the other hand, are usually free to join, and geographic market reach is limited only by the affiliate's ability to promote his web site.
- Choose From Thousands of Products and Services - What isn't sold online? That list must be shorter than the one describing all that IS sold online. There are thousands and thousands of affiliate programs selling every product under the sun. That makes it easy to find products related to your current or planned web site.
- No Sales Experience Needed - When I started my affiliate business, I had absolutely no sales experience. That wasn’t a problem, however. The companies I affiliated with provided excellent marketing material. Using their sales copy, I was able to get my first affiliate site up in less than a day.
- No Employees - The largest expense of most businesses is employee salaries. Although there might be times when you need or want someone to work for you as an affiliate, it's doubtful you'll ever have to worry about hiring full or part-time employees. When you have a project you want to hire out, it is easy to find specialists in every computer-related field who can work for you from the comfort of THEIR own homes. You pay only for the project, and never have to worry about ongoing employee-related benefits and deductions.
- No Expensive Merchant Accounts Needed - Setting up a merchant account for any business is a time-consuming and costly business. It's even more tedious for Internet businesses. However, merchant accounts aren’t a concern when you're an affiliate. The merchant bears that cost and handles all processing of payments. You never have to lose sleep over potential chargebacks, fraud or losing your merchant account when you’re an affiliate.
- No Inventory to Carry - Even if you live in a small one-bedroom apartment, as an affiliate you can sell large items without storage concerns.
- No Order-Processing - Forget the problems associated with collecting and storing names, addresses, credit card numbers, etc. The merchant does all that!
- No Product Shipping - The cost and hassle to prepare and ship products to customers worldwide could be staggering. Affiliates never have to worry about packaging supplies or postal rates.
- No Customer Service Concerns - Do you hate the prospect of dealing with nasty people or customer complaints? Don't worry about it! The merchant handles the snivelers.
- Make Money While You Sleep - What other business allows you as a sole proprietor to keep your doors open and keep making money even when you take breaks or after you go home for the night?
- The World at Your Doorstep - The Internet is the world's largest marketplace. You can drive more visitors to your online store in a day, than many small-town merchants see in in a year.
- Minimal Risk - The product you chose isn't making money? Dump it. Take down your links and promote another! It's that easy. There are no long-term contracts binding you to products that don't sell.
- High Income Potential - If you have a job, your salary or hourly wage is probably pre-determined. Maybe there's not much, other than working overtime, that you can do to increase your income. With your own affiliate business on the Internet your income potential is limited only by your desire, effort and imagination.