Special Report: Affiliate Marketing
Sitting in packed sessions at trade shows devoted to the discussion of affiliate marketing, one gets the sense that the catalogers in the room are either experts or novices in this growing channel.
This special report is meant to serve both groups: It’ll explore what you should know before you start an affiliate program, as well as strategies to make your existing program better.
Affiliate marketing is the process by which third parties, often Web sites, advocate your products or services in exchange for a commission. A commission is paid every time the affiliate sends a sale to you, or in exchange for information deemed relevant by you, such as a consumer e-mail address or other data.
Affiliates can take many forms. In the online world, comparison shopping sites, rebate sites, and even blogs and other content sites will advertise a merchant’s products. Advertising on affiliate sites can take numerous forms, from banner ads to text links to catalog request forms.
In this special report you’ll read about two catalogers’ experiences with a range of affiliates and how affiliate marketing fits into a complete e-commerce platform. Additionally, you’ll learn of affiliate opportunities available in the offline world.
—Matt Griffin, associate editor
How to Build a Better Program
So you’ve heard how other catalogers are turning affiliate marketing into a strategic money-maker for their organizations. If you’re not yet involved in this sales channel, here are some tips that will help you get started on the right foot.
First, let’s define affiliate marketing. Simply put, affiliate marketing describes the relationship between you and agents authorized to recommend your products on your behalf. Often these agents are Web sites that offer buyers pertinent content, rebates on products or a space where they can compare products from different merchants. For every person an affiliate sends to you who completes a sale or gives you information you deem relevant, the affiliate is paid a commission.