The Advantages of Affiliate Program Networks

    April 13, 2003

If you are looking at making a few extra dollars from your site from affiliate programs, the Affiliate Program Networks are definitely the way to go. An Affiliate Program Networks runs affiliate programs for many different companies which allows you to join, get the links, see your stats and get paid all in one place. There are a number of advantages to joining these programs via a network rather than joining them individually. Here are the reasons why.


One of the biggest advantages is that your income from multiple programs is added together and you are sent one payment. This is great because firstly, you don’t have multiple checks to take to the bank. This can be a problem if you are not in the US because you probably get charged by your bank for depositing foreign currency. Here in Australia, I get charged between $7.00 and $35.00 for depositing a check in US dollars (depending on the bank). Getting one check for 20 different companies really cuts down on my expenses.

Also, most affiliate programs won’t send you a payment until you earn a certain amount. This can be a problem if you are making a few dollars here and there from a bunch of different sites because you won’t actually receive any money. With an affiliate network, these few dollar amounts are added together so you have a much better chance of reaching the minimum payment amount.

Time Saving

To put it very simply, it saves you the time of having to go to individual sites and applying to join their program, getting their banners and so on. With a network, you just need to tick a box for multiple programs, click apply and then you find out if you are accepted. The banners and links are available in one place – it’s just easier.

Ad Tracking

In my opinion, this is the most important feature of all. Most affiliate networks have individual links for each banner, button, popup and text link. They then track exactly where the sales come from. So, you can see for each merchant, exactly which of their ads works on your site allowing you to do away with those that don’t work and just run the ones that convert. With individual affiliate programs, you may be getting sales but unless you are only running one ad, you really don’t know what is working and what isn’t. All of your sales could be coming via a text link, which means you are wasting your ad banner space by running banners that don’t convert.

A good example of this is one particular affiliate program that we run through Commission Junction. We have made 25 sales this year for $1000 of income. We can see that 13 of the sales have come from the text link and 12 from the banners and buttons. The important thing is that we have sent them 5 times as many visitors via the banners than through the text links but we have more sales via the text. Therefore, because we know this information, we can see that the text links perform much better and we can put our energies into promoting those and maybe replacing the banners with something else that works better. Additionally, we know that half our sales via banners have actually come through one particular 100×100 cube so we know that we can probably stop the 468×60 banners altogether without losing many sales and replace them with ads for another company that may work better.

Different ads, different approaches and different ideas work differently for different people. The affiliate networks allow you to really maximise your income.

In conclusion, the Affiliate Networks offer what we believe to be big advantages over individual programs and are well worth investigating. Here are the main Affiliate Networks that we use – Commission Junction (, ClickBank (, LinkShare (, BeFree (, Clickxchange (, ClixGalore (, CPABank ( and QuinStreet (

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Sean Burns is the author of the Newsletter – More than five years of experience in site design, marketing, income generation, search engine optimisation and more is passed on to subscribers – hype free. Sign up today to get real information of real value to webmasters.