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Why Join Affiliate Network Programs?
Another post, another thought. Why join affiliate network programs as much as you can? This a good one to discuss early and something I realized when I was far ahead along my venture. It took me a long time to fix it, so donít make the same mistake I did. Learn from my mistakes, be informed from the get go, and make the right decision that fits your overall strategy.
What do I mean? In plain English, let me put it this way. If you are someone like me who makes (or would like to make) a lot of money by referring others to free opportunities they can join to work from home and make easy extra money in their spare time, then chances are you join the opportunity yourself, sign up for their affiliate program and then market your affiliate links through posting in blogs, forums, your email signature, your own website etc.
This post is irrelevant for you if making extra money by referring others is not part of your long term strategy (which I highly recommend that it should). Just a quick tangent. I used to make $300-500 a month working these opportunities myself. But when I started referring others, the amount grew exponentially and today I am making thousands. The power of referrals is simply much stronger and results in a ton more revenues for you. So back to the point, if making extra money through referrals is not your cup of tea, then you might as well stop reading here.
If you would like to make money by working these opportunities and referring others as well so both you and they can make more money, then you have an important decision to make. The company you sign up for might offer its own referral program, and might also be part of a larger affiliate network. Letís talk about one specific example here.
Send Earnings is a popular program that pays you to read emails. It pays a good amount so many people are likely to join it. Letís assume you are already using it to make money reading emails and now you want to refer others. You have two options. You can join their affiliate program and market your affiliate link, or you can join one of the better affiliate network programs like Panthera who also carries Send Earnings as one of their affiliate companies.
Whatís the difference? Well . . . SE pays you 10% of what your referrals make, while affiliate network programs like Panthera will likely pay you a one time fee ($1.60 I believe with Panthera and subject to change) per referral. So letís see, if you go with the earlier option, your referral would need to earn $16 for you to earn a $1.60 or 10% commission. On the other hand, Panthera will pay you $1.60 immediately when your referral signs up but no commissions afterwards.
Something interesting to think about isnít it? You have to ask yourself what kind of referrals are you attracting. Are you bringing in folks who are serious about making money and who wonít quit the program? If so you are better of with the 10% option. Why? Because your referral might make hundreds and thousands of dollars over the years. Why settle for $1.60? On the other hand, if you are bringing mass numbers of referrals through your website or blog and donít think they will stick around to make at least $16, then you might as well cash out for the $1.60 guaranteed money right?
How do you know which way to go? You really donít know exactly. You can track results by trying both links and seeing how your referrals behave, how much they make and how long they stick around. You can guess based on your instinct after doing some tracking. But you really never know the exact answer. I know you will ask me what I do so let me tell you right away. I use the later option. Yes I am leaving money on the table, I totally agree, but I have my reasons for using a larger affiliate network link.
Why? The single biggest reason is certainty. I know for a fact that the bigger affiliate network programs will be there tomorrow. There are higher chances of a smaller, single company going out of business or cheating you out of your commissions. But you are much safer with a bigger affiliate network, who has the financial backing to stay in business and the tracking technology and internal controls needed to ensure you (as a promoter) is not getting cheated.
These networks have high standards for selecting companies that join them, so you are better off with these bigger players. These are essentially a single stop resource for promoters to sign up with various companies that are part of the network. Another big benefit is that you only have one check to collect from the affiliate network every month, instead of collecting 10 different smaller checks which add up to the same amount.
There are also usually minimum payout thresholds involved. For example, Send Earnings might not allow you to cash out until you have a minimum of $10 in earnings, while the bigger network may allow you to cash out just after earning $2 from your first referral. This can also be the exact reverse, so make sure you read the terms to decide the best route to go for you.
Also, always compare the payouts. In our example, Send Earnings pays 10% of your referral earnings while Panthera pays $1.60 per referral. These amounts are all different for different companies. Sometimes the individual affiliate program pays more, and other times the bigger affiliate network like Panthera pays more. Moreover, these amounts can change. Send Earnings might revise their policy tomorrow and say we are now paying 15%. So the moral lesson is? Stay on top of them. You can always switch around your affiliate links as you deem necessary. Check your email for notifications fro companies you are signed up with.
TWO BEST AFFILIATE NETWORK PROGRAMS: Check out Panthera and ShareASale. Both of these are in my Top 10 all time earners.
IMPORTANT TIP: Only consider joining the specific affiliate program of the company you are working with and promoting your affiliate links if their commission structure is recurring in nature. This is the only time it makes sense to use your own affiliate links rather than join one of the bigger affiliate network programs.
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