Introduction to Affiliate Networks

By | January 5, 2011
Affiliate Networks

Becoming an Affiliate can be moderately difficult, but choosing the right affiliate program or product to promote can be even harder. Especially, when there are millions of small and large online businesses out there offering deals and commission to affiliates. A big vote of “Thanks” goes to the establishment of affiliate networks and online channels, using which you now can find the right brand to promote! 

There can be numerous types of affiliate programs as outlined below:
  • Auto Affiliate Programs
  • Beauty Affiliate Programs
  • Books Affiliate Programs
  • Computing Affiliate Programs
  • Credit Cards Affiliate Programs
  • Education Affiliate Programs
  • Health Affiliate Programs
  • Ink Affiliate Programs
  • Insurance Affiliate Programs
  • Legal Affiliate Programs
  • Lenses Affiliate Programs
  • Mortgage Affiliate Programs
  • Casino Affiliate Programs
  • Shopping Affiliate Programs
  • Software Affiliate Programs
  • Web Hosting Affiliate Programs
  • Forex Affiliates

Below are the BIG “5” Affiliate Networks that you can plan to start looking into right away:

  1. Commission Junction
  2. LinkShare – Partner for free with 500 of the Internet’s top online merchants!
  3. ClickBank
  4. Google Affiliate Network
  5. ShareASale
Commission Junction (www.cj.com)

CJ, Probably the most popular affiliate network. Commission Junction also has its share of critics. Finding and joining an appropriate affiliate program is easy. Based on my experience with CJ,  they make things easy for affiliates by consolidating all payouts into one check. It displays EPC (which to CJ rather oddly means “earnings per 100 clicks”, not earnings per click). CJ is owned by ValueClick, which merged with Be Free.

Lot of webhosting companies are available under CJ, great promotions and earning source.

LinkShare (www.LinkShare.com)
LinkShare has more than 600 merchants in its affiliate network. Choose from categories such as books, music, flowers, fashion, computers, etc. You’ll find some big name companies here, including Dell, Nordstrom, Target, Disney and American Express. LinkShare is owned by Rakuten.

Especially for my purpose, I like LinkShare due to above reason about availability of some big names in the network. 
ClickBank (www.ClickBank.com)
Have signed-up with ClickBank, but didnt get a chance to really exploit the true potential of ClickBank. ClickBank offers a huge array of digital products (downloadable0, mainly ebooks and video training/tutorials. Because it is cheap and easy for merchants to join, the quality of the products provided varies enormously, from very good to downright awful. It’s a popular place to search for overlooked niches. Especially, the commission % is much higher compared to other networks, due to its sales & support for digital products.

GAN – a.k.a. Google Affiliate Network (www.google.com – search for Google Affiliate Network)

Highly professional site with some well known brands. Clients include: America Online, Blair Corp., Bose, CompUSA, Eddie Bauer, HP Shopping, Kohl’s, L.L.Bean, PC Connection, RedEnvelope, Verizon Wireless, and more than 200 others. Formerly known as Performics, which was bought by DoubleClick, which in-turn was bought by Google.
ShareaSale (www.ShareaSale.com)

I would highly recommend ShareaSale, due to its unique qualities. Its a large network offering hundreds of programs – pay-per-sale, pay-per-lead, and pay-per-click programs. More than 700 merchants. It has a strong pro-affiliate attitude and despises parasites and lots of datafeeds. Highly recommended for beginners.
 

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