What is Affiliate Marketing? Advantages/Disadvantages

Affiliate marketing is one of the types of digital marketing based on the resultsThe advertiser does not pay for impressions or clicks but rather by the results that are obtained.

These affiliates earn a commission when the user enters your web page and performs the action determined previously. That can be clicking on a link, fill out a registration form or purchase.

Beneficial for the advertiser and the affiliate

One of the keys to this type of strategy is the community. If you have an account with a blog for some time you will most likely already have an audience that follows you. If you’ve done your job well, with every entry that you’ve generated, you may have earned your trust. It is there where lies one of the keys to affiliate marketing.

But that alone will not suffice. As with any other technique of digital marketing, it is very important to clearly define the objectives you want to achieve, the audience you’re going to direct and channel that you are going to use.

The basic pillars of affiliate marketing

Several factors impinge powerfully on the effectiveness of a marketing campaign for membership. These are some of the most important:


The main thing is that the products or services that promotions fit the interests of your readers. If you write about gadgets doesn’t make much sense that promotions hams of the Pata Negra.

And a lot of care. If your blog becomes a bazaar without sense you run the risk of losing many readers.

Try it first

Before buying a product, what do you do? It is usual to look at forums for the opinion of other users. If you’re going to promote a product, it is best to first try it yourself to give an opinion in the first person. No one will buy something just because you say that you buy it. Unless you are persuasive.

This will give you greater credibility, you will build trust and your readers will be more receptive to your message.

Solves problem

If you want him to read your entry buy the product or service of which you speak, focus on promoting those solutions. There are a lot of people, for example, that searches for plugins to have your website in different languages. It is a problem for which you seek a solution.

Versatile product

At the time of promoting a product try to make it easy to find information. Don’t focus on that is interesting to your niche. Facilítate life at the time of creating the contents, and opt for products that have a lot of information. It will also allow you to write different posts on the same product.

Another factor to keep in mind is that the product that you are promoting you will be able to add accessories. It is a very interesting option because it will allow you to create different entries related to one another.

Link natural

The time of large and eye-catching banners with the claim of this or that product is history. After awakening the curiosity and the urge to buy the product or service, the best way to lead readers to the promotional content is a link in the text. It is one of the types of affiliate marketing that work best. Probably because of its simplicity.


When writing about a product or service you have to be honest and do not hide that from sales you earn a commission. And it’s not that what you shout to the four winds. If you are honest with the reader and he sees that you’re not looking for ‘his goal‘, will continue trusting in you even though you know you will get that commission.

What can you promote with affiliate marketing?

Now that you have some clear concepts, the time comes to choose a product to promote. What is the most appropriate? An easy way to know what type of products are the ones that most interest aroused in the people is to go to e-commerce more well-known.

In the case of Amazon, the giant of online commerce, you can see that it is as simple as clicking on the “All departments” and then on “Products”. Depending on the type of product that interests you, you can browse through the different categories.

The type of product that you choose is critical to the success of a campaign of affiliate marketing.

6 types of affiliate marketing

Affiliate marketing emerged in 1996 when Jeff Bezos, founder of Amazon, came up with a way to link the web pages of other sellers and that they earn a commission for each book sold in Amazon and referred to through the web page of another merchant.

We have identified 6 categories of affiliate marketing:

Web page

Consists of pages focused on specific content that may be of interest to advertisers of products that have to do with these contents. The web pages advertising the products and earn a commission for each registration or sales achieved.

Cashback and sites that give out their revenue with the users 

In this case, we have a database of users registered with the sharing of commissions by the actions achieved. Users make purchases through the affiliate platform and receive a percentage back. There are three types of differentiated in this format of membership:

Distribution of commissions of money directly.

The assigned points redeemable for items or services.

Those that offer a discount or special promotion to it to perform the given action.

Affiliates who work on search engines (Pay per click, PPC)

In this case, the affiliates provide qualified traffic to merchants through the purchase of words or phrases in search engines such as Google or Yahoo.

Databases of E-mail marketing

it Consists of the transfer of the data of registered users who are interested in a matter relating to the product that offers the trader. The advertiser must be familiar with the specific audience and the type of client for which the member can make the best use of your database. The commission rate used is cost-per-thousand-impressions (CPM).

Database co-registration

The users who are interested in the products or services of several companies can subscribe to the newsletter of an affiliate. The user expressly consents that your data may be sent to an advertiser of a particular sector for which the user has an interest.

The affiliate networks 

Networks of affiliation arise, to regulate the relationships between advertisers and affiliates. These networks of intermediaries between thousands of affiliates and advertisers in addition to providing the tools for the follow-up of the sales directed from the page of an affiliate.

Advantages and disadvantages of affiliate marketing

As with any type of digital marketing, affiliate marketing has its benefits both for advertisers and for media. But there are also disadvantages to the use of this discipline.


The main advantage, for the online medium, is that you don’t have to create any product or design a service. Besides, you should not worry about giving support to the customers. All of that will be the responsibility of the company that derives the traffic.

For your part, if you are a brand looking for affiliates, one of the major advantages that you’re going to have is that the sales of your company can grow with an economic investment thanks to external people. It is not a fixed cost and, what is more interesting, you can help to get ambassadors for the brand.

On the other hand, with affiliate marketing, it is also possible to reach the audience that interests you. Which leads to a higher return. This will be true always and when you care for them especially the media on which will appear your brand.


For the digital space, the first thing that you have to keep in mind is that you should not abuse the affiliate marketing. You have to care for the number of times you use this technique of marketing because the interest of your followers may vanish if they perceive that they only want to sell products.

Another drawback is that customers that fall in your networks are to your affiliates so that you will not be able to avail yourself of the remarketing to be redirected to this or other products.

How to attribute the sales

If you’re considering taking the plunge to affiliate marketing, you pose another great question: “How do you know that you’ve derived a buyer?”. At this point comes into play the technology. When a reader of your blog clicks on the ad their browser receives a tracking cookie.

As you know, the cookies are for the browsers to store these data. In affiliate marketing, cookies are used to remember the link or ad on which a visitor to a website clicked on. These files can also store the date and time of the click as well as other data related to the behavior of the user. This kind of cookie is called a “cookie of the first instance“.