What Is Affiliate Marketing – How to Benefit

What Is Affiliate Marketing – How To Benefit


Most of us are not familiar with the term Affiliate marketing and yet we have all done it at one time or the other. Take, for example, you join an organization and they give you a certificate that will allow you a percentage of your next membership if you introduce someone new to the organization. Well, my friend that is affiliate marketing, but with a brick and mortar business. With the intervention of the internet, affiliate marketing went world-wide and introduced us to what is called e-Commerce. In this post, I want to take you through what affiliate marketing is and how you can make a supplemental income.



Before doing his service with “Uncle Sam,” a man named William J. Tobin set-up online affiliate marketing for his company “PC Flowers &Gifts; back in 1989, for the first time. At the same time, he also patented the concept of Affiliate Marketing.

His company was so successful he was asked to establish the same thing for what is one of, if not the largest flower delivery companies worldwide. The company is Florists’ Transworld Delivery (FTD). One of the largest e-Commerce companies online.

In 1994, online affiliate marketing started to take hold and spread with the following events:

  • The launch of a beta version by PC Flowers & Gifts and IBM of a commercial version of the one developed by William J. Tobin.
  • Eroticism goes digital with cyber erotica using a “cost per click,” program
  • CDNow introduces the online music-orientated website, where consumers could read reviews on the latest songs and albums released and purchase albums.

This was only six years after the introduction of the World-Wide Web (WWW). With the introduction of the WWW, the concept of affiliate marketing allowed anyone with a computer and a desire, to increase their market access to the world in a matter of seconds. Companies like Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Walmart took advantage of this and created their own Affiliate Programs and currently have Affiliates and customers worldwide. This is over and above their online shopping website.

In 2016, online shopping grossed approximately $2 billion in United States dollars (USD). It is anticipated that online purchasing will gross something like $4 Trillion USD by 2020. Affiliate Marketing is responsible for a good portion of that income.

How Does It Work

So how do you make money from this? You may ask. Well, the whole premise of affiliate marketing relies on three things:

  1. An independent website owner, known as the Publisher or Affiliate
  2. A company selling merchandise that wants a larger market, known as the Merchant or Advertiser
  3. A willing buyer, known as the Consumer

This new phenomenon also gave creation to a fourth player, known as a Network. An affiliate network is a third party go-between that can track visitors or sales, referred by the Publisher. They are a hosting company for both small and large merchants and they provide a payment system, that is usually performance-based, that pays a commission to the Publisher on behalf of the Merchant(s).

What You Need To Begin

You are the independent website owner, at least you will be if you decide that you want a part of that online revenue. Since beginning my journey in affiliate marketing I have heard several individuals tell their online experience, some of these stories were very sad, including mine. You see there are several online companies that have set-up shop to separate you from your money and without giving you anything in return (scams). I was taken not by one but two companies online that offered me the opportunity to make income without really doing any work. Fortunately, I woke up in time to stop a possible larger pirating of my wallet.

Some others spoke of trying affiliate marketing on their own, they had minor success, but nothing life-changing. After being taken by the two scams, I went online to do research on companies that were legitimate and could show me how to make an income online through affiliate marketing.

Several of us have ended at the same online business, Wealthy Affiliate. This organization offers you a step by step approach to establishing your income generating website. They take you through two types of training. The first, the Certification Course is for those that have a niche/passion, which they want to share with others online, and generate an income at the same time. The other training, the Affiliate Bootcamp, is for those who do not have a niche or passion but would like to promote affiliate marketing. Personally, I would complete both courses. Although Wealthy Affiliate takes you through the process step by step, some concepts will require more than one review and in some instances are covered slightly different in the courses.

To establish a presence in the affiliate marketing/online business world you will require the following:

  • Really solid training that takes you through the process step by step
  • An organization that can provide timely assistance when problems occur on your website
  • A professionally designed website
  • An organization that is always doing research and development to provide state-of-the-art infrastructure and tools
  • Quality Content that will attract visitors to your website.
  • Affiliate Program Banners that will monetize your site.

Wealthy Affiliate offers all the above and more. You would think that a company that offered such a number of benefits would be charging you a large output to join. You would be wrong. Access to most of the benefits come as part of your membership. This has not changed in the past 12 years since Wealthy Affiliate was created. In fact, if anything it has improved.

Wealthy Affiliate offers you a free trial period, a week, after which you can choose to join a monthly premium program and access the benefits not included in the free trial or continue with your website still for free. The choice is yours. Like other trial periods, you are limited in terms of to what you have access.

Generate Income

Do you remember those companies I spoke about earlier that tried to come between me and my money? Well being honest it takes two to tango. So I was at fault as much as them. I wanted to get that extra income without putting in any work. They dropped the fishing line and I grabbed the hook.

For an initial outlay, they promised to make me rich overnight. Too good to be true, well it was. One company wanted me to purchase a premium package for $5,000, and the would do all the work. All I had to do is sit back and let the website generate an income. Well, life is full of lessons. The important thing is to learn from the good and the bad and I did.

What I liked about Wealthy Affiliate there were no promises of getting rich quick. What they offered was to teach me how to create a well-designed website and generate an income through online marketing.  The intriguing thing was there was no upfront money required, and I could try it for free.

I got hooked again but this time positively. You know the saying “Give a man a fish, you feed him for one day but teach him how to fish and you feed him for life.” Well, that is what I could see in Wealthy Affiliate, I could see the potential of what was being offered in terms of skills development and the possibility of making a supplemental income to offset my pension.

From what I garnered from all the reviews I read on Wealthy Affiliate they could teach me how to create an online business that could pay me while I slept or while on vacation. Something called “Passive Income.” I was not promised overnight success nor becoming an instant millionaire.

The business I would create would take time, depending on the niche/passion. It required baby steps to develop and constant posting of quality content. By allowing selected merchants and affiliate marketing networks to place banners on my website and writing quality content, I could get paid each time a visitor clicked on a banner and purchased a product. If you are promoting the tools or Wealthy Affiliate itself on your site, you will also get paid for any referral that signs up. The nice thing about this arrangement is you commision with Wealthy Affiliate is for life.

What Is It

You are being paid based on the pages and posts you put on your website, and the number of visitors that end up there and who purchase something through the affiliate programs. The income is called Passive income what is that? In simple terms, it is money that you can make while you sleep, shop watch television or on vacation. You do not have to be at the moment when the money is being generated, or in the same location.

How Will You Get Paid

To get paid you require a website that has quality content that attracts traffic. The longer that traffic spends on your website the likelihood they will click on an Affiliate Banner and purchase something.

You will get paid a commission from the affiliate company or network that you have displayed on your website. Now depending on the company the network, or product, the commission can be anywhere from one percent up to 50 percent depending on the article purchased. Some companies offer a one time commission while others offer a lifetime recurring commission. It is very important to research which company or network you will join.


It will be my tenth year in retirement in May 2018, and so far I have had a good time. I do get to travel, not as often as I would like. I also love to keep healthy both physically and mentally, and those are additional reasons why I was looking for a way to generate a supplementary income to offset my pension and at the same time challenge me mentally. The physical I already have covered and I found what I was looking for with Wealthy Affiliate.

To me, it has been fairly easy to follow the tutorials, which by the way is constantly being improved based on members’ input. Not being an internet knowledgeable person, did make some tasks challenging, but Wealthy Affiliate has such a helpful community, they all seem to want you to succeed, those challenges were made easier to understand and complete.

Wealthy Affiliate is not for everyone. If you are a person seeking to get-rich-quick, it is not for you. You have to be willing to work hard, have patience, and perseverance. With these, you can make a living. So if you have a niche or passion and are willing to work hard then I would recommend click here and start your online business for free.

Please if you know of someone who would be interested in this article please share. If you have any questions, comments or want more information drop them below, I will get back to you.

Hello, I am Harvey the creator of My Living The Dream. I was born on the beautiful island of Jamaica but grew up in the United Kingdom. With my family I immigrated to Canada and settled in Ottawa, Ontario. The capital of Canada. I am retired and I want to travel and enjoy my retirement. Get out of the cold and take vacations somewhere warm and low key. That is why I started this website. I figured if I can earn sufficient “crazy money,” that would allow me to travel five months of the year my dream can come true. I want to show you how you can turn your dreams into reality.

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