A lot of money is made by selling on a commission basis. That is – I sell the stuff for you in return for a cut of the sales price, and in effect, the more you sell, the more money you make. The upside from the sellers point of view is that he can have an army of people selling his affiliate products, for which he pays nothing unless they actually make sales. He pays nothing for advertising or driving traffic and he does not have to worry about his brand reputation – provided his product really is up to the mark. The affiliate gains through having products to sell without all the hard work of product creation and, provided he is using reputable affiliate sales companies, no worries about if and how he is going to get paid.
So who are these affiliate product companies?
Clickbank is probably one of the best known. It has thousands of products in many niches and has a rock solid reputation. All of the products sold on Clickbank are electronic – either downloadable directly or through web based membership sites. Commission rates are set between 25% & 75% by the seller but affiliates are not paid until 28 days after the sale AND once earnings cross a preset level. There’s also a little kick where if you don’t earn enough to be sent a cheque (or direct bank deposit), after a certain time, Clickbank will knock a dollar off your earnings to encourage to go out and sell more.
It does cost an amount (currently $49.95) to set up a product for sale and your sales funnel is vetted to make sure it complies with all of Clickbank’s rules. They can take recurring amounts so it is good for ongoing membership sites. Sales tracking is good and although customer service is reputed to be a bit slow at times, the company is well known for making it easy to get refunds which come from Clickbank itself rather than the vendor (hence the 28 day delay in payments).
Affiliates do not have to apply to sell any particular product and the links can come ‘ready cloaked’ if desired. Clickbank also supply a QR code graphic with the affiliate link embedded and encourage the suppliers to provide the JV essentials like pre-written sales blurb and graphics.
There are far worse places to start and Clickbank make it very easy for new affiliates to get started.
JVZoo is the one place that internet marketers will all, eventually, find their way to. It’s a much friendlier looking site than Clickbank and has many of the same features although there are some differences which are quite important. The biggest difference that a newbie will notice is that every product has to be applied for, although if products are in a funnel, permission is given for the whole funnel as a group and the affiliate does not have to ask for each product individually.
Vendors have far more control in JVZoo than they do in Clickbank. They can set any level of commission from 10 to 100% and as hinted above, can set up an entire funnel of products, many layers deep and setting up the upsells and downsells is very easy for the vendor. Unlike Clickbank, selling through JVZoo is free.
Payments to the affiliates is also more under the control of the seller as they have the option to offer immediate payments (as soon as the affiliate has made a sale), which is usually only offered to trusted sellers or delayed for a certain number of days. This is because the vendor themselves is responsible for issuing refunds although this is done through the JVZoo interface (for commission accounting purposes), so the vendor must know that there is ‘money in the bank’ to make these refunds from.
Once an affiliate has been approved to sell a product he will be able to pick up his sale links which are not cloaked, so there is an extra step there for the marketer to take – most of whom would hide their affiliate link within a tracking link anyway (or at least a bit.ly or Pretty Link). Sellers can also add their own bonus items either via a direct upload or a URL and so increase the ‘buy through me’ attraction to potential customers.
JVZoo have an added bonus for both sellers and affiliates in that they can link sales directly to a Get Response autoresponder account so there is no need to sell an item through your own squeeze page to get a buyers list. This feature is definitely worth setting up as soon as you get a JVZoo account and approval for products. You will need to find the Get Response API code within your account, but you only need to do it once. I do recommend you set up a new list especially for buyers, and once you get them, treat them like the gold that they are.
As with Clickbank, JVZoo’s reputation is solid and has a number of features that make it far better than Clickbank although it has fewer products and over a narrower range.
Now by no stretch of the imagination are these the only two companies to deal with, although between them they do hold the majority as far as internet marketers go. Other ones include PayDotCom.com who offer facilities to send physical products as well as digital ones and Warrior+ who deal exclusively with WSOs or Warrior Special Offers – digital items sold through the Warrior internet marketers forum. As I have no experience with either of these or any of the many others, I’m not qualified to comment on using them.
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