Affiliate vs. Partner Marketing: Whats the Difference?

For those of you who are new to affiliate marketing, it can be pretty confusing where to start. When deciding which direction to take, it’s important to understand what each option offers. Affiliate vs. Partner Marketing: What the Difference is! Affiliate vs. Partner Marketing: The Basics

In Affiliate vs. Partner Marketing, the biggest different between the two is the level of control over the process. With partner programs, you basically recruit bloggers, content creators, and other online entities as your affiliates to sell your products or services in exchange for a commission. You essentially turn over the production of your promotions to another company. On the other hand, Affiliate Programs such as Amazon, allows you to control the entire production process from the moment the product is launched. You only pay for sales that have been driven by your specific referrals.

There are advantages and disadvantages to both options. In Affiliate vs. Partner Marketing: What’s the Difference? for those of you who don’t know, the major difference between these two options is the level of control over how the work is done. In Affiliate vs. Partner Marketing, you have more latitude as to how and when you create promotions and track results. In partner marketing, the partners typically provide websites and traffic, with the affiliates having more latitude as to the methods they decide to use for promotions and how much they are personally liable for if a sale is not made or a campaign does not drive enough traffic to an affiliate’s site.

Both are useful approaches to affiliate sales and commissions. However, Affiliate vs. Partner Marketing: what’s the difference? has the potential to make or break an affiliate’s career. When you join an affiliate program, it is usually with the understanding that you will receive a percentage of the profits from each sale generated by customers who are referred by you. The partner programs, on the other hand, do not provide a sales platform, but instead have restrictions on how much you can earn through referrals.

There are several differences in the type of commission, an affiliate can receive. Generally, partner programs pay on a per-sale or commission-basis, which means that if you generate a sale, you only receive a portion of the overall commission. Depending on how they compensate their channel partners, some channel partners may be compensated on a direct-sell or residual basis. There are some channel partners that only compensate when a referral is sold through the partner’s website.

Some of the top affiliate programs in terms of per-sale payout and commission structure include ClickBank, LinkShare, Amazon, Google, Linkshare, ShareASale, Commission Junction, PayDotCom, Provider IQ, Olx, Shopzilla, Vibrant Media and Yahoo Storehouse. The average commission paid to affiliates by these programs is more than 50% of each affiliate’s gross sales. The two top affiliate network providers, ClickBank and LinkShare, offer recurring monthly payments to their channel partners, with the exception of Yahoo Storehouse, which offers one-time payments. The reason for the recurring payments is to ensure that affiliates continue to market their company to the highest levels.

With affiliate network companies, many of which are well known, comes a higher risk of scams and fraudulent activities. However, in comparison to affiliate partners that do not come from well-known companies, the risks and rewards are more balanced. The largest providers of referral programs reward their affiliates for referrals, not for every single referral sold. Also, some of the largest network partners have safeguards in place to stop affiliates from preying on other affiliates or preying on store owners.

A good example of this protection system is Yahoo! Storehouse’s referral program. Yahoo! uses performance-based incentives, or reward caps, to make sure that its associates do not abuse their position as channel partners. With the performance-based incentives in place, affiliates who refer many stores will receive lower rewards and less commission, while those who refer few stores will receive greater compensation and commission.

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