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What Types Of Products Should You Be Promoting As An Affiliate?

Aug 17, 2007
As an affiliate marketer, your choice of affiliate programs is almost limitless, and it can, therefore, be very difficult deciding what products you should be promoting, in order to achieve maximum long-term profits.

So in the remainder of this article, I'm going to explore the different affiliate program models, and discuss which ones you should be focusing your efforts on.

The first and most basic type of affiliate program is one that simply pays you a one-off commission for every sale you make. So if you sold a $50 product that pays you 5% per sale, for example, then you would earn $2.50 for every sale that you make as an affiliate.

There's nothing wrong with these types of programs at all, but as commissions are often relatively low (between 1% and 15% for most products) you need to make a lot of sales to make the big money. In addition you, or essentially your website(s), have to keep on working in order to generate repeat sales.

This is why I always think that if you want to target these types of affiliate programs, you should look for products that pay high percentages, like Clickbank for example, or the more expensive products that pay out larger commissions per sale. This is because, in my experience, it takes just as much effort to promote high-paying affiliate programs as it does low-paying affiliate programs, so you might as well be well-compensated for your efforts.

Another closely related type of affiliate program is one which pays per lead, rather than per sale. These programs can be very lucrative as it's often easier to get visitors to fill out a form, than to actually buy a product. Although most pay per lead programs may only pay you a small amount per lead, it's worth looking in to as some companies, particularly those in lucrative and competitive markets, often pay out generous commissions for every single lead you generate (although you will face stiff competition from other affiliates).

Okay so we've discussed the pay per sale and pay per lead affiliate models. Both have their merits, but let's now discuss the two types of affiliate programs that, in my opinion, are the most financially rewarding.

The first of these is the recurring commission affiliate model. The products that adopt this model are generally those that require repeat payments in future months, such as web hosting, autoresponders, and membership sites.

These can be extremely rewarding because as an affiliate, for every customer that you attract, you will continually be rewarded in future months as additional payments are made, because you will receive a slice of that payment in commission.

Therefore, these types of affiliate programs can provide affiliates with a relatively stable long-term income, and require less effort than pay per sale programs where you have to continually get new sales in order to generate commissions. This is why I suggest that every affiliate should be actively promoting at least one product that offers recurring commissions, and in addition should focus on the highest quality products, so that each referral remains a customer for as long as possible.

The final type of affiliate program I wish to discuss is the revenue share model. This is where the big money is to be made in my experience. It's essentially similar to the recurring commission model in that it pays you repeat commissions from the same referral, except that the commissions involved here are often considerably larger.

Examples of the types of products or programs that use this model include lucrative markets like forex and poker, where they will pay you a percentage of the entire commissions that each of your referrals generate. Over time these commissions can really add up, particularly if you can attract one or two big-hitters who can generate the big commissions.

So to sum up, in my experience, while you can make good profits promoting pay per sale or pay per lead programs, you should ensure that you are actively promoting at least one product that pays recurring commissions, and one revenue share product or program. These require just as much effort to promote, but will often generate far more profits in the long run.
About the Author
James Woolley is a full-time marketer who runs a number of profitable websites. His latest site is essentially an affiliate program directory that reveals his favourite high paying affiliate programs .
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