What Are Affiliate Links and How Should They Be Used?

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Affiliate marketing is one of the most straightforward ways to start earning money online.

But how can you get paid for your marketing efforts?

Simply direct potential clients and buyers to your affiliate link.

What exactly is an affiliate link? An affiliate link is a one-of-a-kind URL that is issued to a single affiliate. The affiliate link includes and saves the affiliate’s ID or username, allowing the affiliate to be credited for traffic provided to the advertiser’s website. If a visitor clicks on the affiliate link and completes the action for which an advertiser pays a commission, the affiliate is paid.

As a full-time affiliate marketer, I’ve made a good income by driving traffic to various affiliate links over the years. Affiliate marketing is still one of the simplest ways for anyone to begin earning money online. Continue reading if you want to discover how to refer traffic to products and services using your affiliate links and be paid.

Finding affiliate deals to promote is one of the most difficult challenges for most new affiliates.

Here’s a quick 5-step approach for obtaining an affiliate link:

  • Look for a product to promote.
  • Check to see if the product has an affiliate program.
  • Register for the affiliate program.
  • Receive an affiliate link to help you promote the product.
  • When visitors click on the affiliate link, the affiliate is paid.

An affiliate link seems to be any other URL or hyperlink, except that the URL contains additional information at the end of the URL via URL parameters. (For example, the individual affiliate’s ID, offer or landing page ID, and customer tracking information are typically included in the affiliate’s link for tracking purposes.

A URL parameter is any text that appears after the? on a web link.

As an example: ?affiliate=110

Nowadays, practically every major store has an affiliate network, making it relatively simple to obtain an affiliate link for almost any product.

1. Affiliates with Amazon: If you live in the United States or plan to promote e-commerce products, Amazon is a terrific way to obtain access to millions (billions?) of products and create an affiliate link for each one. Affiliate commissions ranged between 2 and 8 percent at the time of writing, depending on the product promoted.

2. Clickbank: Clickbank is another prominent source for affiliate links. Clickbank, unlike Amazon, primarily sells digital products such as ebooks, courses, and software. Because there is no expense to replicate these products at volume, commissions paid to affiliates are typically substantially greater, sometimes as high as 75%.

3. eBay: Although it is no longer as popular as it once was due to Amazon capturing the lion’s share of the e-commerce sector, eBay remains a good affiliate program.

Email marketing is the practice of inserting affiliate links into emails. All affiliate programs do not permit email promotion; this includes affiliate links manually inserted into emails. It is best to study the affiliate program terms to determine whether email traffic is permitted.

Working with several affiliate companies and advertising multiple affiliates offers to site visitors is perfectly acceptable. Affiliate marketing products should be relevant to the site’s users. Avoid having a website that is littered with ineffective affiliate links.

If affiliate links are utilized on a website in the United States, the FTC (Federal Trade Commission) requires the website owner to disclose this. Affiliate link disclosures are an FTC-mandated practice. First and foremost, every link or offer that generates a commission must be disclosed to site users.

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Elizabeth Sramek
Elizabeth is a Senior Content Manager at Scaleo. Currently enjoying the life in Prague and sharing professional affiliate marketing tips. She's been in the online marketing business since 2006 and gladly shares all her insights and ideas on this blog.
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