Chances are, if you’re reading this, you have a blog, decent social media following or have started a YouTube channel and are looking at monetisation. Affiliate marketing isn’t a bad choice, but there are quite a few things you need to take into account before stepping into this industry.
Whether you want to earn some passive income, supplement your salary or become the next web millionaire, you need to figure out the best products and platforms that will actually help you sell. That’s where we come in to help, to share some of the best and most popular affiliate marketing platforms for potential affiliates.
How does affiliate marketing work
Affiliate marketing is basically a commission-based marketing service. This is when you earn a commission for the promotion (mostly online) of another company’s product or service. There are also other commission models from either installs, subscriptions, or other actions as required by the company’s affiliate program offer.
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These are all based on providing marketing on behalf of a merchant and are paid based on the success of your marketing strategy and execution. For every click or conversion earned, the merchant pays the affiliate an agreed-upon amount.
This is usually done using blogs, videos (YouTube, Facebook, TikTok and more), reviews, paid ads, product links. Payment is on a pre-defined basis, either PPC or Pay-Per-Click or when a customer clicks on the link or when the customer buys the product or service, which is called Cost-Per-Acquisition or CPA.
To make it easier, we broke it into steps:
- Identify your product or niche you want to sell
- Join an affiliate programme
- Promote the products and promos
- Track your performance in order to optimize conversions
- Receive commissions if successful
Do note that there are other payment models, which might be better suited to your platform. These include Cost Per Sale (CPS), Cost Per Install (CPI) or Cost Per Lead (CPL).
How to choose an affiliate marketing programme?
Choosing the right affiliate marketing programme for you can be a tough choice, especially since there are quite a few out there. To help get you started, we put together a few things you should consider:
- Choose a programme with a strong reputation
- Choose the right product niches that fit your platform, eg. training courses for a motivation blog or tech solutions for a technology podcast
- Identify key numbers such as conversion rate (CPA or PPC) and how saturated your chosen niche or segment is, because the more competition, the less likely you will get decent returns. Another thing to identify is the cookie life, so you know the likelihood of converting sales
- Look out for the tools and support available on the platform, as well as the tracking system in place – this is crucial if you want to be able to optimise and make changes to get better returns
However, the choice for your affiliate platform may come down to other choices that make better sense to your specific needs. To help you get started, we put together a list of 5 affiliate marketing programmes that you should consider:
Indoleads.com is a global CPA platform with the head office in Kuala Lumpur and six offices around the world dealing with more than 180 countries. This affiliate marketing platform has selected over 2,000 offers for you (some of them are exclusive) with an average eCPA (Effective Cost per Acquisition) of $9.7 USD. Top affiliates may earn over $100,000 USD in monthly payout commissions.
Besides this, the platform can boast an individual bespoke approach, with their managers providing round-the-clock online customer service to help, consult, solve any issues. Their top advertisers from all over the world include Aliexpress, Adobe, Canva, Lazada, Marriott International, Fiverr, Wish as well as many other reputable brands from e-commerce, e-services, finance, education and travel niches.
There’s also one of the most popular programmes, Amazon Associates, which gives you the option to earn a commission on pretty much anything sold at Amazon.com. However, it does come with a varying flat-rate CPA, depending on your product niche.
However, the benefits obviously come from the massive product category, so you’re likely to find something relevant for you to market. It also does provide you with the commission for whatever is sold if the buyer comes from your affiliate link, so buyers making a purchase that isn’t what you marketed can still result in a successful conversion as long as it is within the 24-hour cookie life.
Rakuten Marketing (formerly Linkshare)
Rakuten Marketing as the name suggests is under the Rakuten brand, so they have a good reputation. The CPA depends on the product niche and they have around 1,000 merchants on their platform. While this is a significant number, it actually is on the low side for major global affiliate programmes.
Some of their significant merchants include Walmart, Best Buy and a few others, so it could be a good way to market to the US audience wherever you’re based.
While not a household name in the affiliate marketing scene, MyLead is a popular choice for many affiliate marketers in Asia. They offer over 2500 affiliate programmes and their average CPA isn’t known or publicly available. However, some desktop research does show that they are pretty well-rated across multiple websites with the general consensus that they pay out fast and have a decent CPA.
They may not have the best brands on their platform though, so choosing the right niche is critical. They do seem to have a decent variation from cryptocurrency to dating, so it does fit certain niches that are not that mainstream. They provide you with an easy filtering system to even help you choose programmes that are applicable to your main markets.
ClickBank is a digital heavy affiliate network, which means it has a lot of digital products compared to physical products on its platform. This is different from other platforms like Amazon Associates and Rakuten Marketing, but it does not mean it is a bad thing. Though they tend towards smaller sized merchants (compared to Walmart, Amazon and such), they have reputable digital solutions and services like Commission Hero Pro, Rocket Languages and more.
One positive about Clickbank is that their digital products tend to provide higher than average CPAs due to the nature of their product. Most digital solutions are infinitely scalable, so even smaller margins are still a net positive for the brand. However, some research shows that they do need to filter out some of their less desirable affiliate programmes, so we do recommend doing some research being signing up to some of them
Anything else you need to know about affiliate marketing?
While this is a good starting point, nothing beats doing the research and understanding the industry and your capabilities better. Take the time to build out your platform and generate good traffic, so that your foray into affiliate marketing will result in good returns.
This post is sponsored