Believe in your affiliate marketing skills and never stop learning as marketing affiliates because we continually improve our existing skills. We search for new opportunities, newest topics or products, and while we are on our journey, we gather many interests to help us become more knowledgeable and experienced.
Yet, in the past, affiliate marketing was so different than it is today. This article will touch on how affiliate marketing came to be, its growth and progress to become a billion-dollar industry on the Internet.
What is Affiliate Marketing All About?
According to Wikipedia, affiliate marketing is when a business pays a commission to affiliates when a visitor or customer lands on the affiliate’s website, clicks through to an affiliate program such as Amazon and makes a purchase. When the customer has paid for the purchase, a sale is completed, and the affiliate earns a commission. The owner of the post, blog or website earns a commission.
How Affiliate Marketing Works Step by Step
Affiliate marketing works in a cycle of events through the four key players
- Merchant/advertiser, retailer or brand
- The network offers the affiliate products, specials, or services to choose from and takes care of the payments
How Affiliate Market Industry has grown over the years
Since its inception, Affiliate Marketing has grown and become more complicated with emerging overlaps with a range of internet marketing methods, including
- Affiliate Management Agencies
- Super Affiliates
- Specialised third party vendors
What type of Advertising Methods are used by affiliates
- Organic Search Engine Optimisation (SEO)
- Paid Search Engine Marketing (PPC-Pay Per Click)
- Email Marketing
- Content Marketing
- Display Advertising
- Publishing reviews of Products or Services
As an Affiliate Marketer, you have a role to play too
- Establishes global contact with advertisers and affiliate partners
- Provide advertising services without interacting with advertisers
Affiliate Associate programs provide
- Access to information needed for the affiliate to run campaigns for the advertised products or services within the geolocation
- Knowledge of the rates per lead generated in the campaign
When Did Affiliate Marketing Start?
According to Wikipedia, getting paid a commission on sales predates the concept of affiliate marketing and the Internet.
The affiliate marketing idea on the Internet was created and patented by William J. Tobin, the founder of PC Flowers & Gifts.
|1989||William J Tobin launched PC Flowers & Gifts on Prodigy Network|
|1993||PC Flowers sales exceeded $6 million per year on the Prodigy Service|
|Nov 1994||translation of revenue share principles to e-commerce|
|1994||In cooperation with IBM, who are part owners of Prodigy Tobin, launched a beta version of PC Flowers & Gifts on the Internet|
|1994||CDNow launched its BuyWeb program|
|1995||PC Flowers and Gifts launched a commercial version of the website and had 2,6500 affiliate marketing partners on the World Wide Web.|
|Oct 1995||AutoWeb.com Affiliate Program|
|Jan 22, 1996||Tobin applied for a patent on tracking and affiliate marketing.|
|Jan 1996||Kbkids.com/BrainPlay.com Affiliate Program|
|April 1996||EPage Affiliate Program|
|July 1996||Amazon launched its associate program, allowing associates to display the Amazon banner and text links directly to the Amazon home page. Clicking on the associates’ website would take them straight to Amazon to purchase a book. If a sale were made, the associate would receive a commission.|
|1997||Amazon applied for a patent|
|1998||PC Flowers & Gifts developed the business model of paying a commission on sales to the Prodigy Network|
|1998||PCV Flowers & Gifts merged with Fingerhut and Federated Department Stores.|
|Feb 2000||Amazon was granted a patent on components of the affiliate program|
|Oct 31 2000||Tobin was issued by the U.S. patent number 6, 141, 666|
|Oct 5 2007||Tobin received Japanese Patent number 4021941|
|March 17 2009||Tobin received patent number 7,505,913 for affiliate marketing and tracking.|
Sales Generation since the Early Days
Since its inception, affiliate marketing has rapidly grown in sales in the billions from retail, personal finance, gaming, gambling, travel, telecom, education, publishing, and lead generation forms.
The most active and prominent sectors included
- Adult gambling
- Retail industries,
- File-sharing services
- Mobile phone
Who are the Regulators of Affiliate Marketing?
According to travel payouts in their article, the key regulators for different niches may vary and involve legal policies. Some of the major players include
- Advertisers: use affiliate marketing to promote their products and are responsible for all claims made regarding their products. They also monitor the activity of affiliates. Local trade control organisations regulate advertisers:
- Federal Trade Control (FTC)
- Business associations such as Better Business Bureau (BBB) the United States.
- Affiliate Networks: connect advertisers and affiliates. Platforms are created to help facilitate communication between the two and provide helpful support when needed. Networks such as these are most beneficial to affiliates because networks provide them with access to many programs in a single interface. Networks are regulated by trade organisations such as FTC and many others,
As an affiliate, you can sign up with an affiliate network, and by doing so, you must agree to follow their terms. Affiliates can be selected either manually or by application. It can take a while for affiliates to be chosen.
- Affiliates: are known as publishers and marketers who drive traffic to the advertiser’s website. There are different avenues that you can take as an affiliate:
- Online Travel Agent
- Social media influencer
- Clients: can also be customers who will come to your website and click on one of your affiliate links and go to the advertisers’ website and buy a product to make a sale.
- Governments: It’s essential to keep up today on the legislation of your country and other countries regarding marketing, advertising, taxes, exchange rates and much more
Who are the Top Affiliate Marketers in the industry that we can learn more from
Who is named the king of affiliate marketing? According to an article in business-voice Magazin some information on Ralf Schmitz- an online marketing veteran. He was given the name “Affiliate King” because he is one of Germany’s best successful affiliates and online marketers. I was surprised as I usually read of other successful bloggers like Neil Patel and Pat Flynn, but I haven’t heard of Ralf.
His projects include:
- Travel Industry
- eBay Shop
He makes more than 1.2 million Euros annually.
Ralph advice is
“You must not give up on your path to success as an online marketer. With a little courage, perseverance, passion and corresponding goals, anyone can become a successful marketer.”
Ralph has built his business based on
Now let’s find out who the top lady is in affiliate marketing.
When I searched to find the Queen of Affiliate Marketing, I had zero results. During my research, I came across an article written by Rebecca Felker called “Women in Affiliate Marketing” she too found the results for females to be non-existent.
Rebecca’s article is about women’s place in affiliate marketing, and she debunks the perceptions of women who were not considered. Women today are more accepted in affiliate marketing than they previously were; her advice to women is
“Don’t make business partnerships and opportunities relevant to being male or female, and gender roles won’t play a part in your success.”
In another article, “Celebrating Women in Affiliate Marketing (Part 1) by Geno Prussakov (2019). Alexander Forsch of Awin was listed as number one.
Who are the wealthiest affiliate marketers?
Now we know who the king and Queen of affiliate marketing are but who is the richest. In my research, I came across another article called the “Top 9 Affiliate Marketers You Need to Know About.”
Outgrow has listed the top 9 that we can learn from
- Pat Flynn
- Finch Sells
- Missy Ward
- Shawn Collins
- Zac Johnson
- Ian Fernando
- John Chow
- Kirsty McCubbin
- Andrew Payne
Have you noticed something about this list? Only two women are mentioned; this is precisely what Rebecca Felker pointed out in her article in the above link. Many women out there earn good income from affiliate marketing; however, they may not be in the top richest.
Different kinds of Affiliate Marketing skills that we can learn
There are several other affiliate marketing skills that you can learn, according to Vivek Bhaskaran on Landerapp.com.
- Creating content through blogging, for instance, product reviews, informational posts and much more
- Coupons can help increase traffic to your site and earn revenue
- Review sites on a particular niche such as dating, flowers, pets and much more. Affiliates will earn a commission on sales
- Loyalty Portals
- Incentive programs
- Email Marketing
- Digital Assets such as e-books, buyer guides and research papers
- Traditional Media: TV, radio, print media
Examples of Affiliate Marketing Programs Today
- Amazon Associates
- Shopify Affiliate Program
- CJ Affiliate
- eBay partner Network Inc.
- The Home Depot
And so much more.
Once you become an affiliate marketer, you never stop learning new skills from those who have succeeded. They teach us to look for new opportunities, latest topics or products, and while we are on that path, we will gather many helpful tips and tricks to help us become more knowledgeable and experienced.
Please read my review on
Affiliate Disclosure: Some of the links on my website contain affiliate links, making a small commission on purchases at no extra cost to you. Thank you for taking an interest in my site and reading my posts. Click here to read my full disclosure.
If you have any questions about this post’s content, please leave a comment below. I would love to hear what you think about the article.