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Affiliate Networks vs. Affiliate Programs [lists and examples inside❗️]

Discussion in 'Guides, Case Studies and Tutorials' started by zeropark, Sep 15, 2020.

  1. zeropark

    zeropark Traffic Manager Traffic Manager affiliate

    Hey guys!

    Choosing the right offer may be the make-or-break element for your business. But first you need to decide whether to get it from an affiliate network or an affiliate program.

    If you’re not quite sure what’s the difference between affiliate networks and affiliate programs just sit back, relax, and let us tell you all about it!

    ❓❓❓ Affiliate marketing glossary
    To help you better understand what we’re going to talk about in a second, let’s make a few things clear. First, let us explain who is who and what are all the parties involved in the process of choosing offers.

    ➡️ In the case of affiliate networks and programs:
    • Affiliate marketers (publishers) are the people willing to promote someone else’s products for a small percentage of profits made on their sales.
    • Merchants (advertisers) are the people who own these products or offer services, and want other people to help them market their offerings for a small percentage of the profits made with their help.
    ➡️ In the case of running affiliate marketing campaigns:
    • Affiliate advertisers are the people who run affiliate marketing campaigns promoting other people’s products or services (see publishers above).
    • Publishers are the people who own the advertising space where the ads promoting the merchant’s products are displayed.
    Now that you’re able to understand who is who, and know that publishers in one situation, may actually mean advertisers in another, we’re good to lead you even further down the affiliate funnel.

    ☑️ What’s an affiliate network?
    An affiliate network is an online platform
    that brings affiliate publishers (people willing to promote other people’s products) and the merchants (people who own these products or offer services) together. An affiliate network is essentially a digital marketplace, one of the two most popular ways of finding affiliate offers.

    Various merchants, in that case called advertisers, showcase their offers making it possible for the publishers to search through a multitude of affiliate offers coming from various programs, niches, countries, etc. The affiliate network acts as a middle man for both publishers and advertisers.

    ☑️ How do affiliate networks work?
    As mentioned above, affiliate networks are intermediaries who connect affiliate marketers with merchants willing to outsource marketing their products and services to others. It’s almost like a matchmaking service for the two parties involved, especially given a huge number of available options and opportunities where surely both sides will be able to find a satisfying solution.

    Let’s go over the basic steps that need to be taken to enter the game:

    1. Join an affiliate network ✔️
    Yes, that’s the very first step for both publishers and advertisers alike. It’s also worth noting that both parties are eligible to join more than one network, thus increasing their chances of maximizing profits even further.

    2. Go through the approval process ✔️
    To keep both sides satisfied and ensure high-quality service, credible networks always implement a compliance check for publishers and advertisers. Don’t be scared off, though, as it’s a routine procedure most commonly done by all other affiliate services, too.

    3. Get access to a multitude of offers & publishers! ✔️
    Once accepted, as a publisher, you get instant access to a variety of offers coming from various niches, offering different payout models and prices, accepting different advertising models, or working for almost any country imagined.

    As an advertiser (a merchant) you get a tremendous exposure of your offers to a number of qualified marketers who are willing to help you promote your business for a small fraction of profits made thanks to affiliate advertising.

    4. Use the advertising assets ✔️
    Also, as a publisher, you do not only get access to offers but quite often also to a ton of advertising assets that come with an offer: ad creatives, copy texts, landing pages, visuals, email templates.

    As an advertiser, you’re able to make sure your products are marketed using top-quality content and materials. Hence, ensure the credibility of your brand and maximize your reach.

    5. Track affiliate sales with publisher ID ✔️
    As a publisher, you get a unique publisher ID assigned upon joining a network. You then need to attach it to every campaign you launch to promote a chosen offer. When the desired conversion is fulfilled by a user who engaged with a product via your campaign, the ID allows the network and the merchant to track that conversion back to you!

    This allows the network to track the sales for products you promote, and hence calculate your input and earnings.

    As an advertiser, you’re able to track the performance of your offers and see what publishers do the best job promoting your offers! You can then decide to deepen the cooperation, propose a special deal, or maybe add more offers to your affiliate network portfolio!

    ✅ List of top affiliate networks
    There are too many affiliate networks to list them all in one article. Still, we’re able to recommend a few choices for Zeropark customers that we know are credible and profitable options for both budding and advanced affiliate marketers.
    • CrakRevenue | Dating, Nutra, Gaming, Cam, Adult
    • Mobidea | Push Smartlinks, Smartlinks, Dating, Sweepstakes, Adult, Leadgen, Mobile Content
    • ClickDealer | Dating, Nutra, eCommerce, Sweepstakes, Leadgen, Mobile Content
    • MyLead | Smartlinks, Dating, Nutra, Downloads, Gambling, Cam, Sweepstakes, Mobile Content, Crypto
    • Gotzha | Dating, Antivirus, Nutra, Gambling, Sweepstakes
    • MOBIPIUM | Push Smartlinks
    • Traffic Company |
    • Youmi | Smartlinks, Dating, Sweepstakes, Mobile Content
    • AdCombo | Casino
    • OliMob | Antivirus, Downloads, Sweepstakes, Adult, Mobile Content
    • EPC Club | Trading, Crypto
    • Sublime Revenue | Dating, Gaming, E-commerce, Cam, Sweepstakes, Adult
    All of the above recommendations can be also found in Zeropark’s Offer Wall… which additionally gives our advertisers bonus payouts and exclusive deals! If you’d like to check it out, go to your Zeropark account and click on the Offers tab.

    ☑️ What’s an affiliate program?
    Various businesses, both digital and brick-and-mortar ones, launch their own affiliate programs. Essentially, the same rules apply.

    Publishers apply to join a program and promote the company's products or services. In return, the company shares a fraction of the profits made with their help. The difference between affiliate networks and programs is that such programs come directly from a given company, without any intermediaries.

    Affiliate marketing programs are widely used to boost a company's marketing efforts and bolster its sales. It’s an extremely profitable way for a company to market its products, with tens of eager publishers who want to do the advertising job for them. In return, they earn a small percentage of profits ONLY IF the desired action, for example, a sale, is actually made and tracked back to them.

    ☑️ How do affiliate programs work?
    Affiliate programs work on the very same premises as affiliate networks, which we already explained in this article. Only this time two parties are enough, the merchant and the publisher, no intermediaries involved. So if you’re interested in joining an affiliate program, have a look below!

    1. Pick an affiliate program! ✔️
    Affiliate programs are usually a part of a particular company’s marketing strategy. That’s why their offer selection is limited to products and services a given company sells. In that sense, picking a program means also picking a product or a service you’ll be promoting as an affiliate publisher/advertisers (depending on the perspective).

    2. Get approved! ✔️
    Depending on the program, the approval process may differ. It may take place upon joining a program or requesting a particular offer, but a credible program will always make sure its products are promoted by eligible marketers. That’s also a clue for publishers, ensuring they apply to work with trustworthy associates.

    3. Get an offer! ✔️
    Getting your offers directly from an affiliate program means a smaller selection of choices, though there’s still plenty of offers and programs available! Once you get approved as a publisher, all you need to do is find the right offer and discuss its details and tracking options. When the formalities and technical requirements are agreed on, you’re good to go!

    ✅ List of top affiliate programs
    Again, there’s a never-ending list of affiliate programs that’s impossible to fit into one article. And again, we’ve got a few direct programs we can recommend to our customers, at all levels of experience.
    These also can be found in Zeropark’s Offer Wall, bonus payouts and exclusive deals included! Just go to your Zeropark account and have a look at the Offers tab.

    But if you’re looking for more general examples, here’s a list of well-known affiliate programs offering various types of advertising opportunities.
    These are some of the biggest companies globally, and publishers may usually need to exhibit a high-credibility profile to be eligible for promoting their products.

    If you want to learn more about:
    • Pros and cons of choosing affiliate networks
    • Pros and cons of choosing affiliate programs
    ...head to our blog and read the full article!

    Adyoco Team, azgold and T J Tutor like this.
  2. Voluum
  3. Certified
    T J Tutor

    T J Tutor GM Administrator Certified Vendor Dojo Master affiliate

    It's always great to cover the basics. Our Newbie Guide is quite similar!

    Thanks for reminding us we always need to keep an eye on the basics!
    zeropark, AmNovice and azgold like this.
  4. AmNovice

    AmNovice Affiliate affiliate

    Glad this is posted here. It was actually tough to find this info even on Google back when I was researching this very bit. Thanks!
    zeropark likes this.