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Understanding The Affiliate Marketing Language

Aug 17, 2007
You are about to encounter a language that you have never heard before: the language of Internet Marketing, as it relates to Affiliate Marketing. It is important that you understand what it all means, to ensure that you are signing up for programs that are worth your time.

As you will learn, it is important to read the terms and conditions for affiliates. Sometimes, you will be presented with those terms before you sign up, and sometimes you will be presented with them after you sign up. But it is important that you read them, and it is important that you understand what is being said.
It is also important that you understand what the following terms or abbreviations mean:

CPC: Cost per click. This relates to how much it costs for each click an ad or link receives when advertising on a CPC basis. In other words, instead of paying a flat rate for the advertisement, you would pay a certain amount of money for each click the ad receives.

PPC: Pay Per Click. This relates to CPC, where you pay for each click that your ad or link receives. Google AdWords is an example of Pay Per Click advertising.

CPA: Cost per action, or cost per acquisition. Basically, this means that you will pay each time an action is taken. The action may be a click, a sign up, or a sale. In fact, many affiliate programs also pay on a CPA basis, meaning that each time someone clicks on your link, or signs up to receive information through your link, you earn a little money. Google AdSense is an example of this.

CTR: Click Through Rate. This number is usually represented as a percentage, and it refers to the number of times your ad was clicked on, in relation to how often the ad was viewed.

CPM: Cost per thousand. The amount of money you pay for every one thousand ad impressions.

URL: Uniform Relay Link, otherwise known as a link, or a website address.

Affiliate Link: A URL or link that is assigned to you by the affiliate program. This is the link that you will promote, as it is used to track your clicks and sales.

Contextual Link or Text Link: A contextual link is a link that looks like content, because it is all text. It may be several words long.

Charge Back: This will be an important term to you. This refers to when customers cancel their orders, or have their credit card companies reverse the charges. It basically means that you lose a sale. Some affiliate programs will hold money back each pay period to cover potential charge backs/refunds, and release that money to you after a specified period.

SPAM: Unsolicited Commercial Email. This term also refers to commercial posts on forums and blogs. Most affiliate programs will have strict anti-spam regulations that you must follow.

Revenue Sharing Program: This is the same thing as an affiliate program.

Co-Branding: Some affiliate programs offer co-branding options, where your company name or logo is placed on a reseller's website, or on the product itself.

Referral Link: The same as an affiliate link.

Tracking: The method or software used to record sales, clicks, leads, and other information that has to do with your affiliate link.

HTML or HTML Code: HTML stands for Hyper Text Markup Language. This is the programming language used to build webpages. HTML code generally refers to a small portion of HTML code, such as that needed to place affiliate links or banners on your webpages.

Partner Program: This is the same thing as an affiliate program.

If you come across other terms or abbreviations that you aren't sure of the meaning of, make sure that you stop and go find out what it means before agreeing to anything or before doing anything. Not knowing can cause problems later on.
About the Author
Kurt Naulaerts runs a web site promotion service and also teaches people how to become successful with affiliate marketing. Find out how to start an income online using affiliate marketing programs.
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