Affiliate marketing is the revenue sharing between online advertisers (and merchants) and online publishers. Compensation and pay is based on performance measures, normally in the form of clicks, sales, and online registrations.
The advertisers and merchants are normally referred to as affiliate merchants, and publishers or sales people are known as affiliates.
The many benefits of affiliate marketing include the potential for making lots of money. You can automate a lot of the advertising process and receive payment only for desired results, which includes sales, registrations, and clicks.
Even though most merchants will assume some level of risk with fraud, there is still a level of risk involved. Once you know what you're doing with affiliate marketing, you'll be on top well before you know it.
Affiliate marketing has been a contributor to the rise of many companies online, including Amazon.com. Amazon.com was one of the first adopters of affiliate marketing, and now has thousands of affiliate relationships. Ebay also uses an affiliate program to sign up new memebers.
When it comes to making money online, affiliate marketing is in a league of it's own. You don't have to worry about bosses breathing down your neck, and you are in control of everything you do with your company and your website.
Affiliate marketing also gives you the chance to stand behind products you know and love, be offering links and banners to them on your personal website. You'll receive money for each product purchased that you represent, which is reason enough to participate.
If you've been looking for extra money, affiliate marketing is the way to go. You can stick with one merchant or go with as many as you need for your business. Affiliate marketing on the internet is truly becoming more and more popular – making now the time for you to get your foot in the door.
Another good place to read about affiliate programs is Affiliate Summit forums. You can learn a lot about what makes affiliate programs work as well as meet up with some good affiliate program managers.