Wednesday, April 18, 2007

5 Reasons Most Affiliate Programs Are Number 1 Enemy of Affiliate Marketers

The upsurge growth of the Internet, especially Internet marketing is more of a blessing than a curse. And one of the most versatile and a money-spinning department within the Internet marketing industry is the affiliate internet marketing.

According to the highly respected Forrester Research, online affiliate marketing is expected to reach the all-time high of $230! This mammoth figure aptly describes one positive trend: that the entire affiliate marketing online is daily bulging at an alarming rate!

And if you remember the fact that affiliate merchants and affiliate marketers are the two credible forces driving these monumental figures, then you’ll agree with me you should not fold your arms while the industry go burst with irregularities.

What are the problems and irregularities? Truthfully, several problems presently becloud this growing industry. But the one I want to tackle in this article concerns the activities of online affiliate merchants.

If you’ve been promoting affiliate products for at least 6 months, you would have discovered that many merchants are not worth the name “affiliate program online”, they normally tag on their foreheads!

Now let’s discuss 5 of these problems below…

Affiliate Merchant Problem #1:

Most lack passionate mentors and marketing resources

The popular saying that says, ‘it takes two to tango’ hold true for any industry that desire to reach highest level possible. Unfortunately, for most merchants, the opposite is the case. They do not see the affiliate marketers as partners.

Instead, they only order and install affiliate tracking software and advertise for affiliates to join their ‘great paying programs.’ Once this is done, they start waiting for the affiliate marketers (or their presumed marketing slaves) to sell whatever they have on offer. These are the set of online merchants parading more number of affiliate marketers, who are also inactive, confused, miserable and poor.

On the contrary, a merchant that regards its affiliates as true partners will make sure it provides a dynamic and robust resource and human support for them to succeed. A system I called ‘affiliate + merchant cross pollination’ will occur. This implies a platform where both merchants and affiliate marketers freely share ideas, offer open criticisms and improve every promotion for the benefit of both parties!

The ‘affiliate + merchant cross pollination’ is therefore a deliberate attempt by the merchant to encourage its affiliates. It will also create a more conducive atmosphere for new ideas generation in addition to array of proven marketing resources available to the affiliate marketers.

Affiliate Merchant Problem #2:

Deliberately cheating affiliates

I know that there are scammers and thieves in most industries. But the ongoing scams emanating from the online affiliate marketing industry is worrisome. Visit any webmaster forum to get acquainted to complaint from affiliate marketers. You will be greeted with reports of obscene experiences they are going (or gone) through in the hands of merchants.

For example, there are verified incidences where merchants deliberately withheld commissions belonging to their affiliates without just cause. And there are times when some merchants simply went overboard and slashed commissions by whatever percentage.

We have some merchants who start by paying commission promptly in order to inscribe ‘good names’ in the mind of affiliate marketers. But once they gather some momentum, the merchants will stop payment without credible reasons.

There are also merchants that will do everything in the book to stimulate their affiliates to promote their products. However, just when the affiliate marketer except to be paid his commission or agreed fees, the merchant will simply fold-up operation and bolt away with thousands or millions of dollars worth commission!

What about the merchants who changed their company names and products line entirely? This is done in order to avoid being traced after swallowing affiliate marketer commission.

Affiliate Merchant Problem #3:

Lies and half truth

The internet marketing world is replete with affiliate merchants who claim to operate certain commission types, but will later renege to abide with it. For example, some merchants boldly promise a 2nd tier commission payout, but refuse to pay the affiliate marketer for his underlines as enshrined in 2nd tier commission policy.

I know you will call this trend ugly, but it seems most of these situations cannot be effectively tacked because the informal nature of the internet seems to provide protection for this sort of illegalities.

Affiliate Merchant Problem #4:

Rigid mentality – products that pay little commission

Gone are the days when you should glue yourself promoting products that pay you mere $20, $30 when you can earn $100, $150, $175, $200 and more for the same efforts!

From my experience, some of the worst merchants are those paying peanuts to hard working affiliates like you. Just open your eyes and you will discover how you’d been cheated for so long.

Affiliate Merchant Problem #5:

Poor converting website and product in competitive market

Individually, the two problems are dangerous enough. But will give birth to a hydra-headed monster to act against the affiliate marketer desire to make lots of money online. This twin problem, unknown to most affiliates, is secretly killing off the good efforts of most affiliate marketers!

Do you think if you drive the most targeted traffic form the search engines to a poorly converting website will give you the kind of results that will change your financial fortunes?

The answer is an emphatic NO!

Now let me paint a picture in your mind: Let’s say you join an affiliate program, and promote with PPC and SEO marketing. Your well-targeted traffic was later sent to your professionally-designed website oozing out with top-quality pre-sell contents.

Your visitors were pleased with the quality education they received from your own website. They love and trust your judgment and with open heart – clicked to the merchants’ website.

But what happened when they got there? They were confronted with poor contents that did little or nothing to convert them. So the readers you’d so labored to get eventually ended largely disappointed!

So they simply closed the site and went elsewhere. Now, who do you think will lose? Is it the visitors, merchants or you? You - the affiliate marketer loses. You will end up bearing the brunt of low converting website. You will lose your time, money and hope of making money get dashed.

Can you now imagine when a poor website is employed to sell products in high-competitive markets? Your efforts will simply end up in the bottom-less pit! This is a major reason many affiliates are forever roving round the Internet, searching for top affiliate program they can find.

This is the more reason I canvassed that affiliate marketers should diligently choose few merchants – 3-5 at most! Go for the merchants parading top-on-the-range resources, training modules, courses, mentors and high-paying commissions.

So let me ask you this salient question: “Will you make this decision now or not? It is left to you to decide or continue the old way. But remember that as an affiliate marketer, you have a BIG role to play in eliminating or at least reduce the encroachment of ‘bad named’ affiliate programs in our beloved industry.

Make up your mind to pitch tent with merchants who are operating the best affiliate marketing program online with top quality resources and affiliate marketing guide that will help move forward fast.

And for the best solution, you should join a training program that show every level of affiliate marketers the online merchants promoting top affiliate program that pays huge commission and array of dynamic money making resources.

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