For a small to medium-size business, affiliate marketing is an easy way to earn some extra revenue while keeping inventory and labor costs to a minimum. It is a marketing strategy that allows you to offer more to your customer base while capitalizing on the efforts of a brand partnership.

Interested in learning more? Here is a quick guide to everything you need to know about affiliate marketing and affiliate email marketing.

What Exactly is Affiliate Marketing?

Affiliate marketing is a unique partnership between two or more companies in which one company promotes a product or service of another company and receives a small percentage of the sale if their directed traffic clicks through to the product or service and purchases it from the affiliate. 

Let’s take a quick moment to examine Google AdSense as an example. Once you have established your company’s website, you can monetize it by partnering with Google AdSense or a similar brand to place ad banners or boxes on the various pages of the website. Google manages what ads show up in the boxes, and your company receives a small monetary incentive each time a visitor to your website clicks on one of the ad boxes to be redirected to the affiliate website.

In its early days in the dot-com scene, Amazon used affiliate marketing brilliantly to build its business. Amazon created an affiliate marketing program in which it invited other businesses to sell books and other merchandise through the Amazon website, and Amazon took a percentage of the sale of the item (essentially product listing rent). Later, Amazon explored other methods of Affiliate marketing and eventually grew into the behemoth company that it is today.

Even small to medium-size businesses can hop aboard the affiliate marketing train and increase revenue for the company by partnering with larger businesses. Sign up for an ad marketing account with Google or another brand and place ad banners on your website. You can also share products and services with your own email contact lists by creating affiliate marketing emails. These emails work in the same way as a website ad banner; you are just sharing the ad directly with your email contacts.

Why is Affiliate Marketing Beneficial to My Company?

Affiliate marketing is beneficial to your company because it is a low-cost and low-risk way to generate some extra income. With affiliate marketing, you can, in most cases, choose the types of products and services you are promoting so that you can target the specific interests of your clients. Once they purchase the product or service from the affiliate, you receive a percentage of the sale. Affiliate marketing allows you to offer more goods and services to your customer base without having to take on extra inventory or hire additional employees to take on an extra workload.

Affiliate marketing is also easy to start up, manage, and track. Statistically speaking, for every $1 you spend on affiliate marketing, the average ROI is about $49 – it’s a no-brainer! 

It’s also not a bad idea to offer an affiliate program of your own. When you incentivize others to sign their clients up for your service or to buy your product, you’re essentially increasing your revenue and expanding your brand partnerships, which can open the door for other possibilities, like webinars and content creation. Also, the best customers are ones that are referred from either a client or a trusted contact, so having an affiliate program in place can help ensure you grow your customer base of long-lasting clients. 

How you set up your affiliate program is up to you, but you want to make sure the incentive is good enough to inspire participation. At Benchmark Email, for example, our affiliate marketing program offers our partners 25% of each sale each month.  

Affiliate Programs for Email Marketing Campaigns

In today’s digital world, your marketing team does not need to spend very much time at all creating marketing templates to send out affiliate marketing emails, thanks to the many online platforms there are out there to choose from. For a small subscription fee, you can draft the content of your email, and the program platform does the rest of the work to insert ad links and other pre-defined graphics – all you have to do is hit the send button to distribute your affiliate emails to your email subscriber lists.

As an added bonus, most email marketing platforms can provide you with valuable reporting data, like how many and who from your contact lists opened the email you sent, how many affiliate ad hits your marketing email generated, and how much revenue your company might expect to receive as a result of the affiliate email marketing campaign. With affiliate marketing email platforms, you can sign up for a monthly subscription and receive a decent commission, depending on the specific company you work with. Each platform comes with its own bells and whistles, so do your research to determine which meets the needs of your business the most.

Some of the perks of signing up for Benchmark Email’s affiliate program is that it’s totally free, and you can earn a 25% recurring commission on each referral. We pay our commissions monthly, and you get access to our premade banners and links to share via email, social media, or on your website. 

Email affiliate marketing can be an extremely useful tool for your company and provides a way for your business to bring in a little extra revenue. Consider partnering with other brands that offer tools and services that you think your customers would benefit from. And, don’t neglect the possibilities that having an affiliate marketing program of your own can offer.