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What is affiliate industry? How to make money with affiliation?

What is the affiliate industry? What is its importance in internet marketing? Check how to make money on affiliation.

The modern world has been dominated by technology. Internet marketing has largely replaced traditional marketing. Many people make money online today. It is therefore not surprising that over time the affiliate industry emerged. What is that? Can you really make money from referrals? What is affiliate earning? How do you recognize an affiliate link?

Affiliate industry – what is affiliation?

When we talk about affiliation, we mean a process that involves establishing cooperation between at least two parties. Ultimately, the idea is to achieve an established business goal from which each party will benefit.

In the context of marketing, affiliation means that one company enters into an agreement with other companies or people who will promote the company’s products or services. In return, they will receive a commission or other form of payment. The basis for such a program is an affiliate link, which we will tell you more about later in the entry.

An affiliate program is also called an affiliate program, affiliate marketing or performance marketing. It is definitely the least common to be called performance advertising.

The affiliate industry has become one of the most popular branches of internet marketing. It is developing along with online trading and the constantly growing number of Internet users.

girl and boy on computer screen, bloggers

Affiliate links – what exactly is it?

Simply put, an affiliate link is a URL that leads to a specific product or service. It contains information about where a given customer comes from. In other words, how did he get to the website and on whose recommendation? Thanks to this, the publisher earns a commission on his purchases. Many people say that an affiliate link is the simplest way to make money online. It doesn’t have to be a regular link, you can also attach it to text, graphics or logos.

How does an affiliate link work? It is very simple and involves a few steps, which we will discuss in a moment. First, the publisher posts an appropriate link online, e.g. on its social media. Then the user (i.e. the customer) clicks on this link and goes to the store’s website. Later, he or she buys the selected (or specific) product in an online store that belongs to the advertiser. Thanks to this, the publisher earns a commission on sales and the advertiser acquires a new customer.

An affiliate link allows you to count every click and visit to the advertiser’s website. It also informs you what sales or actions are made from this link. It also calculates commissions on specific shares and sales, so the publisher knows how much he has earned.

Interestingly, most people do not even notice that the link they are about to click is an example of an affiliate link. However, it is becoming more and more common for Internet creators to speak openly about their cooperation from which they earn money. Moreover, it is often a benefit for the customer because they can benefit from a discount that they would not normally have.

client and advertiser in the affiliate industry, two men on screen shake hands

Who participates in the affiliate program?

The affiliate program includes:

  • affiliate (also called publisher or affiliate),
  • advertiser (called seller),
  • client.

In some cases, there is also an affiliate network. This is a platform that enables such cooperation. There are more and more of them operating in Poland, e.g. MyLead or Web Partners.

Affiliation – what role do individual participants play?

Let’s start with the advertiser who sponsors the program. Its goal (usually) is to increase sales. It sets out the rules describing how promotions are conducted.

visualization of customer acquisition in affiliation

What benefits can an advertiser gain? Firstly, it will be acquiring new customers. Then, dissemination of products on websites whose users constitute its target group. Additionally, it will strengthen brand awareness and disseminate information – both about specific products and the company. Moreover, increased financial profits are very important from the advertiser’s point of view. They result from new channels of reaching the customer.

It is worth adding that the advertiser’s direct goal will not always be sales. He may as well care about the customer reaching his website or leaving his data.

Now we move on to the partner. Its goal is to make money by acquiring customers for the advertiser. For this purpose, it uses available tools that allow the customer to be directed to the advertiser’s website.

We will now discuss the benefits that an affiliate partner can gain. First of all, it will be the opportunity to receive financial benefits in exchange for promoting the advertiser’s products. It is worth mentioning that these benefits are always proportional – either to the sales generated or to the leads obtained. A lead is a person who is somehow interested in a specific company’s product or service. It is commonly called a potential customer.

The next benefit will be the ability to decide on the form of advertising and where it will be placed. We would also like to add that small websites can also participate in such programs. It’s not just for big players.

In the end, there is a customer. Here we are talking about a person who is initially interested in the product (or service) offered by the advertiser. She is the one who clicks on a link or banner containing a specific publisher’s code. The benefit for the customer is the purchase of a product or service at an attractive price.

two people shake hands, symbol of concluding a contract

Who can become an affiliate?

In the past, to take part in such a program, you had to have your own website or run a blog. Today it looks a bit different – due to the spread of social networks. This is where Internet users spend most of their time. And at any age.

Currently, it is enough to have an account on one of the social networking sites, e.g. Instagram, Facebook or YouTube. Thanks to this, anyone who conducts activities online can become an affiliate (i.e. a publisher or partner). We are talking here about ordinary users of social networking sites, influencers, bloggers and vloggers, thematic portals and even product comparison sites.

Social media have long ceased to be used only for communication with other users. Now they are a place where people share everything – photos, opinions, interests, views. Some people do not realize that social networks have, to some extent, replaced blogs. That is why advertisers have noticed the huge potential that they are taking advantage of.

Affiliation – how to start earning money on referrals?

First, you need to choose the products you would like to promote. It is important that they are tailored to your industry. It is best that they correspond to the niche in which you operate.

Then find a partner (affiliate) program thanks to which you will earn a commission from the sale of such a product. You can even find offers on online store websites. Often, such information can be found in the footer of the page.

You can also join one of the affiliate networks operating in Poland. You will find all necessary information about a given program on specific websites.

If you fail to find a store that would allow you to cooperate on such terms, you can always try to contact us by e-mail. Sometimes it happens that stores run such programs, but in a less official way. This means that information is only available to those who work with them.

Another issue that should be mentioned is the need to compare commissions offered by individual affiliate networks. After all, the point is to make cooperation as beneficial as possible for you.

The last step is to decide how you will recommend selected products. There are many possibilities – blog articles, YouTube videos and sponsored posts are just a few of them. If you are determined, you will definitely find something for yourself.

people analyzing data and costs

Affiliate industry – what is a commission and what are the settlement models?

Commission is the remuneration that can be received in exchange for performing a specific activity or achieving specific results.

In the affiliate industry, partners receive a commission – for each customer who makes a purchase or performs a specific action thanks to their promotion. Such actions include, for example, registration on the website.

Various settlement models are used for commissions. We will discuss each of them below.

Commission settlement models in the affiliate industry:

  • CPS (cost per sale) – commission is awarded for the sale of a given product or service,
  • CPA (cost per action) – commission awarded for performing a specific action, e.g. subscribing to a newsletter,
  • CPL (cost per lead) – commission is awarded for completing the form (you must enter your data),
  • CPC (cost per click) – commission awarded for each click on the link,
  • CPO (cost per order) – commission is awarded for each order placed (via a link).

The most common settlement models are CPL, CPS and CPC. Although of course it’s worth knowing them all.

Affiliate marketing – advantages and disadvantages

When talking about the affiliate industry, we cannot ignore the topic of strengths and weaknesses resulting from such cooperation. Later in the post, we will discuss the advantages and disadvantages of affiliate programs.

Advantages of affiliate marketing

  • high effectiveness – affiliation provides an effective way to reach new customers,
  • low entry cost – you don’t need capital, all you need is internet access. In some cases it may be necessary to purchase products at your own expense,
  • ease of monitoring results – appropriate software allows you to track the results of affiliate campaigns. Thanks to this, they can be easily optimized to achieve the best results,
  • no risk – most of the work is performed by other partners. If you invest nothing, you have nothing to lose. Of course, outside of your time,
  • extensive distribution network – provides the opportunity to build a wide distribution network consisting of many partners. This also increases the marketing reach,
  • there is no upper earnings limit – affiliate programs allow you to earn quite high amounts, without much effort,
  • increased reputation – cooperation with well-known companies can improve the image of the affiliate’s brand, i.e. partner,
  • you are not concerned about customer service and related issues – you are advertising other people’s products, not your own. So you don’t have to worry about any complaints against them, this is handled by the manufacturer or seller.
operation of the affiliate industry

Disadvantages of affiliate marketing

  • long-term project – as the creator of such a program, you will not see the effects immediately. The longer you operate in affiliation, the better you earn and the more partners you have,
  • devoting time and skills – if you want to earn good money on commissions, you have to put some work into it,
  • dependence on partners – when cooperating with other companies, you are in some way dependent on their activities,
  • competition – you have to compete with other partners for both position and sales. It is worth keeping this in mind when choosing an industry (in some it will be more difficult),
  • there are frauds – the so-called fraud may involve cheating the affiliate network, advertisers, affiliate programs and even customers,
  • low salaries – commissions can be low, so you can’t earn much, especially in the case of affiliate networks,
  • difficulty in choosing partners – choosing the right partners is the basis here. It takes a lot of time and effort to do it right.
people working on their laptops


After reading this post, you already know a little about the affiliate industry – what it is and how to make money. You also understand who can participate in affiliate programs and what roles each participant performs.

The affiliate industry is currently one of the most popular marketing models on the Internet. As we mentioned, affiliation involves promoting other people’s services or products. In exchange for conducting such activities, you receive a set sales commission. However, this is quite a complex topic, if only because, apart from the benefits, it also has many disadvantages.

Nevertheless, affiliate marketing can be an effective addition to your online activities. Of course, if you manage to create lasting relationships with partners – important from a business perspective.

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