Affiliate Marketing – Types and Examples

What Is Affiliate Marketing?

Affiliate marketing is a strategy that uses advertising networks to drive targeted traffic and sales leads to a website. Affiliate networks compensate affiliate publishers for each conversion or sale, and the publisher usually gets a commission that’s calculated as a percentage of the sale.

Understanding Affiliate Marketing

Affiliate marketing is a model that allows access to selling programs across a vast network of affiliates. This means that the act of selling is outsourced to a vast network of affiliates.

The way it works is that people are offered products for free or at a discount for promoting them, and these networks are paid when an order comes in. Since larger manufacturers often use this system to sell their products using other platforms, it creates instant popularity among consumer groups.

Affiliate marketing predates the Internet. However, in today’s world of digital marketing and analytics, it’s on the rise. Companies can track links on websites and, through internal analytics, see how many convert to sales.

An affiliate is a merchant that hires another company to promote their companies products to its audience. Often, affiliates will use email marketing to communicate with their target audience.

Online merchants pay individuals or companies (known as affiliates) to promote their products. An affiliate promotes the merchant’s products by placing their banners and links on websites and emails and may also spread the word via social media. These providers may receive a commission whenever someone clicks on special tracking URLs contained in the affiliate link.

To be clear, you are not selling the products yourself. Instead, you create a website with an affiliate link that gets customers to the original online retailer. when the customer buys any products or services, they will be credited as a sale from your site. The e-commerce site pays you a commission for having referred them business.

The goal of affiliate marketing is to advertise/promote a product/company in order to increase sales. The affiliate makes money for each product sold by recommending products, and the merchant generates traffic and revenue through the affiliate’s information.

Affiliate marketing is an online strategy where businesses pay commissions for qualified leads or sales generated by the business. It has evolved over the years because of the Internet, improving technologies, and how companies can now track leads and payments more efficiently.

Affiliate marketing is a cost-effective option for advertisers to promote ideas, products, or services for another business.

Types of Affiliate Marketing

1. Unattached affiliate marketing

An unattached affiliate is like a passive form of advertising. It operates at the level of the Internet and relies on page views and shares to determine whether an ad message will be seen by visitors who search for certain keywords. This means that no personal information is gathered from internet users, and the affiliate has no control over what products or services they promote.

The key benefit of unattached affiliate marketing is you can place an order you like on any website, as long as it is for a product or service that you have tested and can confirm is safe for your purchase.

The only requirement is that you place an Order via the affiliate’s page. Once you have followed all steps for placing your order, they will begin sending your product or service to your door (at no additional cost).

2. Related affiliate marketing

Related affiliate marketing is where you choose a product or service that someone else sells, and then you offer them a discounted price. For example, consider you own a pet food store, and one of your customers decides to buy a specific type of food product online. You could offer him this discount to make sure he comes back and buys more food from you in the future.

Related affiliate marketing is an excellent way for someone with limited finances to earn a living by promoting products they already know about. It’s also a perfect way for experienced entrepreneurs to earn money from people who might not otherwise buy from them.

Related affiliate marketing could well be more profitable for your business if used effectively. Related affiliate marketing is most beneficial when you have a small business or simply looking for extra income.

3. Involved affiliate marketing 

An involved affiliate marketing campaign is when the affiliate actively promotes the offering and uses promotional assets (such as web pages, ad space, or pictures) provided by the seller or an independent third-party partner. It works closely between the affiliate and the seller.

An involved affiliate campaign includes promoting the affiliate’s products and those of other related businesses. An involved affiliate marketing campaign can bring in as much as 100% more traffic to your website than an un-involved campaign.

Advantages of Affiliate Marketing

  • Affiliate marketing can be an easy way to get started with little investment.
  • An affiliate marketing business provides you with access to a broader market than you might find on your own. 
  • You can target customers looking for certain products and services and work with them directly and with other affiliate networks. 

Disadvantages of Affiliate Marketing

  • Affiliate marketing can lead to accounts being taken over by cybercriminals who will use stolen credit card data to charge consumers amounts they wouldn’t dare pay if it weren’t for the convenience of distributing free products.
  • Fraudsters may take advantage of honest affiliate marketers by posing as legitimate buyers on the website and asking for money.
  • The biggest disadvantage is that you have less creative control over your projects and more control over how much you give away.

How To Make Money With Affiliate Marketing?

  1. Choose a product to promote.
  2. Write an article about that product (or find one you can re-write). 
  3. Promote your article in other people’s blogs, on Facebook groups and forums, on Quora, on Reddit, etc.
  4. If your article is shared a lot, it will drive traffic to your site, and you’ll earn a commission from the vendor.

Examples of Affiliate Marketing

1. Amazon Affiliate Marketing

Amazon’s affiliate program empowers creative people to share Amazon products on their sites or apps. From beauty products to household objects, Amazon offers loads of items for you to promote. Companies part of the program earn commissions by sharing Amazon products and services with their sites’ visitors.

To be eligible to run Amazon ads, you and your site must meet specific program requirements, such as providing unique content and not having a restricted audience. Websites must not contain obscene or offensive content, promote violence or illegal acts or contain any content deemed harmful to others.

If you have a healthy Amazon Affiliate site that meets our criteria, your application will follow the Amazon Affiliate Marketing commission approval process. Once your application is approved, you will be ready to generate sales and commissions on Amazon. You’ll earn up to 10% commission on sales of qualified products. The rate depends on the product category. As a special promotion, receive a special rate on select events.

2. Etsy Affiliate Marketing

Etsy has been in operation since October 2003. It is an online marketplace for vintage and handmade goods, emphasizing socially responsible manufacturing and price transparency.

The company promotes itself through various channels, including blogs, social media, and email lists. Consumers can discover new items and become familiar with various Etsy shipping methods and delivery times through these channels. If you’re interested, you can apply through the portal. To be eligible as an Etsy affiliate marketing partner, you need to have an active, unique website and brand identity.

After you submit your site’s information, Etsy’s marketing team will review it. When your site is approved, you’ll be able to start promoting your products. Once someone buys something from your store, you can expect to see compensation arrive about four weeks later. Sellers on Etsy can be affiliates, and they can earn commissions on sales of their products.

Etsy has a responsibility to ensure that retailers remain up-to-date on their policies, procedures, and practices. For this reason, the company retains the right to terminate an agreement at any time if a retailer fails to comply with terms of service or other overarching policies.

3. eBay Affiliate Marketing

eBay Affiliate Marketing is a special affiliate program where the eBay Partner Network pays partners for sharing their listings outside of eBay Inc. – The affiliate earns a high commission and credit-points from the merchant.

eBay affiliate marketing program gives its affiliates the power to upload and highlight their products for sale on and provide a link to a personalized eBay storefront owned by them exclusively.

When a customer clicks your affiliate link, eBay will pay you a commission based on the product type and selling price. You can earn credit towards your final merchant fees by selling other seller’s products.

With eBidSystems’ eBay Affiliate Marketing solution, affiliates can track qualified clicks to their unique URLs. Affiliates are paid the revenue once the transaction has converted into an actual sale. This unique solution applies to anything that will benefit from turning website traffic into real revenue.

How Do I Become an Affiliate Marketer?

Several factors should be considered before becoming an affiliate marketer. Platforms, the type of product or service provided, and understanding the target consumer are important considerations.

If you are keen to become an affiliate marketer, consider using the right platform to promote products. Is it an effective channel for you to advertise? Something that is designed to relay your opinion of a product or service? Blogs are a great form of communication. If you blog, consider creating affiliate links.

After identifying a platform, it’s time to decide on your niche. Choose one that speaks to your skills and interests, directing you toward consumers who are looking for exactly what you have to offer.

Research it, learn about it, and decide whether you can make money with it. Start with one product, but think beyond the sale–what will you write that your visitors want to read? Research what they already know about the subject.

Then develop content that fills in the gaps proactively–write long posts that include videos, podcasts, infographics, stories, quotes, and more to engage your reader’s interest. You can choose to become an affiliate of almost anything, which is how you will increase your traffic and earn money.

How Much Money Can You Make as an Affiliate Marketer?

Your income can vary wildly, but it always depends on what you’re promoting, how much influence you have, how you reach your target audience, and how much effort you put into marketing. Affiliate marketers’ incomes vary widely, from a few hundred dollars to six figures or more—the more time invested in marketing, the better chance of earning more significant profits. 

Key Takeaways

  • Affiliate marketing is a strategy that uses advertising networks to drive targeted traffic and sales leads to a website. 
  • Affiliate networks compensate affiliate publishers for each conversion or sale, and the publisher usually gets a commission that’s calculated as a percentage of the sale.
  • Affiliate marketing predates the Internet. However, in today’s world of digital marketing and analytics, it’s on the rise.
  • Affiliate marketing is a cost-effective option for advertisers to promote ideas, products, or services for another business.