Affiliate Marketing 101: What Is Affiliate Marketing?

Are you looking for a quick means of making money on the internet? Or looking for a passive method of generating revenue for your business on the internet? Then you should be looking into affiliate marketing. You must have heard before that creating and selling your product online is a sure way of accumulating wealth on the internet. That’s true, but by selling for others you can still make hundreds of bucks within a few days so far you are doing it well.

Now let’s dive into it, what is affiliate marketing?

In simple language, affiliate marketing is defined as the means of generating a commission by referring internet users to a person’s or company’s product. These products can be physical products or e-materials, and it can also be an event. The main thing is that you are advertising these products to people, and receiving a token on every customer that purchases your marketing effort.

Affiliate marketing does not require any special skills, and you will even do well in this niche if you already a blogger or a content manager. Yours is to prepare great content about the product which may be a review, how-to videos, or attractive images and add your affiliate link. Anyone that clicks on the link will be directed to the company’s sales page where they can make a purchase. Knowing the skills is not a big deal, but to make the best out of the marketing it is expected that you understand the parties involved in the system.

There are mainly three parties in the affiliate marketing system, but some other sources may have them as four which are merchants, the network, the publisher, and the customer.

What are they up to?

1. Merchant

The merchant is the producer of the product. A merchant can be a manufacturing company, an author, or any person who has their products for sale on the internet. They can also be referred to as the seller, retailer, or the brand. These companies are sometimes the one to determine the amount of commission to offer an affiliate who drive traffic to their website or on sales conversion. Although they are the owner of the products, they cannot gather promoters on their own. This is where the service of an affiliate network comes in.

2. Affiliate network

You must have heard of the likes of Amazon, JVZoo, Clickbank, and Aliexpress—these are affiliate networks. Affiliate networks serve as the link between the producer of a product and the publisher. The merchants register on these platforms for advertisement and to get affiliates who are interested in marketing their products. However, depending on the affiliate network terms and condition, the merchant may have to pay a fee to get their products listed on their website.

The affiliate networks see to it that the publisher receives their payment and provides the both parties with a regular analysis that shows their performance. These analyses include the number of sales, number of clicks, and visitors received through affiliate marketing efforts. They also allow affiliates to integrate different tools that will help them reach out to more customers in their marketing journey.

3. Publisher

A publisher or an affiliate is a person or business who gets a commission for referring traffic, leads, and sales to a merchant. The publisher registers with an affiliate network usually for free and then finds a product to advertise. This merchandise may be any products or that which relate to their business. After finding their desired products, they get affiliate links from the network and begin to drive in traffic through the link.
Publishers are usually bloggers or businesses who have a website, and it is so because they can easily use their blog post to attract visitors to the product.

4. Customer

The chain of distribution is not complete without the consumer. The whole reason for a company to invest so much in an advertisement is because they want to reach out to a potential buyer. What will be their gain if there is no one to buy their product?

The consumer in affiliate marketing is usually internet users who ordered products in an affiliate network through a publisher’s effort. These people may not be aware of the network at first, but find themselves in the site by making enquires on search engines and following links.
Now that I have disclosed the parties involved in affiliate marketing. A few examples of the whole process will shed more light on it.

Affiliate Marketing Examples and Strategies

As a blogger in the health and fitness niche, affiliate marketing will just be a nice experience. The fact that their website has already gotten traffic and people who constantly check on their daily blogs will give them an upper hand in the market. Having gotten their affiliate link of a product, this blogger will then proceed to their blog to advertise it.

They may choose to implement any of the content types to introduce the product to their website visitors. These contents can be a video, image, or long-text article that describes everything they need to know about the product. Let’s say the product you are marketing is a waist trainer, you can create an article that will discuss the need for ladies to use a waist trainer. It can also be on how they can use it to develop an hourglass shape, or how they can use it to improve their body workout.

If the blogger wants to maximize a single post to advertise many products, then a review works better in this condition. For example, if you are in the supplement niche, and you have detox tea for weight loss from different brands. So in that case, a review of each of these products will highlight their different pros and cons for visitors to choose the one that best works for them. And you will include the respective affiliate links for each product. Apart from using the article to showcase the products, it will also portray you as a professional in the niche.


Affiliate marketing is one of the best ways to earn on the internet without having to undergo much stress. It is simple to set up and it is one of the internet business that you can begin with zero capital.

Affiliate Marketing Series

Affiliate Marketing 102: Best Affiliate Programs In 2020

Affiliate Marketing 103: Winning Strategies for Affiliate Marketing Contests

Affiliate Marketing 104: 7 Unforgivable Mistakes Every Affiliate Marketer Should Avoid

Affiliate marketing 105: A Complete Guide to ShareASale Affiliate Program Mastery

Disclosure: Some of the links in this post are ‘affiliate links.’ This means if you click on the link and purchase the item, I will receive an affiliate commission at no additional cost to you.