I am much more interested in the affiliate programs. As an affiliate, I can choose companies that I use and respect, and I control the size of the banner or link. I can place adds and links in the text and/or on the sidebar. I enjoy sharing business tools that I have looked at and can review myself or get feedback from readers on their value. Here are some sites that will get you started as an affiliate.
Commission Junction (probably the best known)
Connect Commerce (Google)
Linkshare (I'm not familiar with this one)
Each affiliate site has their own set of rules to follow. They are all similar, but you will want to read the agreements before you sign. You will need to give them your business EIN or social security number for tax purposes. Each company has rules that you need to follow to continue doing business with them. Again each is similar, but there are important variations. Here are a few examples.
Vista Print (It's my link, try it!)
Allows you to click on your own link and get commission from the products you buy.
Doesn't allow you to click on your link, they require their link to be placed ahead of a competitors link, and they have a really nice button for "greener" products.
Has some REALLY big banners, so watch what you choose, they have different sizes, styles, and specials to choose from.
Watch your email for changes and updates from your affiliate partners. I will be adding more soon. It does take time to set them up.
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