Affiliate linking is one of the best and easiest ways for creators and influencers to earn a passive income in a fun and relatively simple way. It’s a great way to build out lists of your favorite products to share with your audience, show brands your loyalty to them, and use the provided link tracking data for future campaigns and partnerships. 

Affiliate links are trackable links to specific products that pay out a commission to creators when someone has used their link to make a purchase at a partnering website. There are a handful of different affiliate link programs, and while they are similar in nature, there may be some distinct differences that are important to be aware of when deciding which one to go with. When looking into these programs, you should be sure to look into their commission split, cookie duration, and brands they are specifically partnered with. 

Commission split refers to the actual commission breakdown as a result of when someone uses your affiliate link to make a purchase. It could be a fixed amount or a percentage of the sale. It’s important to distinguish which method the program you’re going with uses to ensure you’re being compensated in the way that makes the most sense for you. Typically, it makes the most sense to be paid through a percentage of the sale as someone may decide to make an even bigger purchase outside of the product you linked to – and you helped drive that sale!

The cookie duration refers to the amount of time a cookie will last for a click from your link. A 30+ day cookie duration is most ideal, as consumers typically need to see repeat messaging before making a purchase. In fact, often times consumers might purchase something other than or in addition to the product you recommended – but because you still led them to a retailer’s site, you would be paid out a commission from the purchase made through your link. This is why cookie durations are key to ensuring you’re being compensated fairly for the business you’re bringing to a website!

It’s important to check which brands are partnered with your affiliate program of choice. Different brands partner with different affiliate link programs, so you’ll want to ensure your favorite brands are partnered with the affiliate program you decide to go with. You might not always luck out with every brand you love being partnered with a certain program, but aim to use a program that has plenty of options of brands that you love. 

Aside from affiliate links being a simple way to earn a passive income, they are also a fantastic method to track data that can help you as a creator when it comes to future brand partnerships. The data provided will not only allow you to see total link clicks, but usually, you can request to see your conversion rate as well. This provides you with quantitative data to take to brands for potential partnership opportunities. We have personally seen many brand partnerships come as a result of the conversion rate data provided and can attest to it being an incredibly valuable asset! ca

Affiliate links are a fantastic way to share the products you love with your audience while also building a passive income stream. You can think of it as a social media referral program, where you’re being compensated for sharing the things you’re already talking about with your followers. If you’re already sharing the products you love, swapping your links out for affiliate links is an easy switch. Remember to always disclose if you’re using an affiliate link as per FTC Guidelines, but we’ll get into the ins and outs of those in a separate discussion.

Happy linking!