Is the Internet a good venue for getting online leads and sales? Oftentimes, online merchants are disappointed or disheartened and end up reverting to traditional media for their advertising needs. Creating a website is not enough. Submitting the URL (with appropriate Meta tags and keywords to make the site searchable) is not enough. Having a merchant account on your site is not enough. The best way to get the most traffic to go to your site is through the forging of relationships with other companies. Short of pounding the pavement or writing emails to anonymous companies who may not give you the time of day, the best solution offered by the internet today are — affiliate programs.
Commission Junction is a one of three ValueClick companies. Together they provide complete Internet marketing solutions to its clients and partners. Commission Junction’s expertise lies in forging strategic relationships between publishers and advertisers; thereby creating an open marketplace low risk and high reward for its clients.
Commission Junction is one of the largest affiliate programs on the Internet today with over three hundred advertisers in the UK, France, and Germany alone and over 1,700 merchants and growing daily. Their partners and clients include leading big name Internet and traditional companies such as Air France, Ebay, Microsoft, Palm, Razorfish, Thomas Cook, and Yahoo. Commission Junction ranks as one of the largest ad networks in the world.
Program Details and Benefits:
How does it work? Once upon a time we had a simple term for it. We called it “banner swap”. Another was direct ad placement. Publishers would include ads or links to advertisers in the content of their website (oftentimes in the form of banners). This helps advertisers in building their brand, drive up their sales, and decrease the acquisition cost of customers.
Income and commissions are generated by what we call “click through”s. This means that the publisher makes money every time the ad is seen or clicked by a person. The commission rate is often set in batches, for example, every 1,000 clicks, etc.
There are several reasons why Commission Junction is considered one of the best affiliate programs on the Internet today.
1) Commission Junction has a very competitive pricing scheme for their merchants
2) They pay out commissions to their members quickly and on time
3) They constantly look for ways to improve their services by increasing the benefits of their clients (or affiliates) and encourage them to help in expanding the Commission Junction network.
Commission Junction employs traditional affiliate commission models such as “pay per click”, “pay per lead” and “pay per sale”.
Commission Junction’s affiliate program offers a variety of benefits to its affiliates. The first is the two tier commission plan.
1) An affiliate can earn a referral commission ($2 up-front) by encouraging other webmasters or companies into joining the Commission Junction network (assuming they are not yet members of the Commission Junction network) once they sign up. For example, if ten (10) people click through from your site and all of them sign up. That means that the affiliate automatically earns twenty dollars ($20) in referrals.
2) An affiliate can earn a five percent (5%) commission on all commissions generated by their referrals. This only applies to new accounts, and not existing members of Commission Junction. For example, if all ten become active members and each one generates twenty dollars ($20) in commissions each month, then the first tier affiliate will earn an additional ten dollars ($10) monthly income. This translates into an annual income of around one hundred twenty dollars ($120) — all from referrals!
Second, commissions are pooled together in one check paid directly by Commission Junction, on a monthly basis, not by the merchants. There is no set minimum commission per merchant. This means that if you earn five dollars ($5) each from ten merchants in a single month, Commission Junction will remit fifty dollars ($50) to you immediately. Also, Commission Junction offers a centralized online commission report for all its merchant programs.
Another benefit that makes Commission Junction so attractive to merchants and publishers is that they also offer their merchants the same two tiered program they offer their affiliates. This means that all merchants are also entitled to the five percent (5%) second tier commissions.
Commission Junction also offers a variety of affiliate programs that you can promote on your site. Aside from the big name companies, Commission Junction has attracted the attention of many smaller merchants that are highly targeted and are focused on a particular niche. This helps in targeting your site as well and will increase the opportunities of finding a merchant appropriate for your target audience.
I’ve read several comments about Commission Junction on the Internet from forums and review sites and there seems to be mixed feedback, depending on whether you are a merchant or an affiliate.
Merchants have given glowing reports all around. According to the merchants, Commission Junction offers them a well-designed and well-implemented solution at a reasonable price. From the affiliates, though, there have been a few glowing reports and quite a few not so desirable ones. Here are some comments posted:
· (August 23, 2001)I could spend all day on their site trying to figure out which programs to choose from the thousands on offer. Don’t make much money from them despite the programs looking good.
· (February 25, 2003) Hardly makes you any money even if you try hard. They used to be a good and reliable bunch, but since they’ve left the pay per click system, they’ve gone downhill in many respects. When I requested payment, next thing I knew was that they terminated my account, accusing me of cheating! This was supposedly detected by their infallible anti-cheating software… I subsequently emailed them several time asking for an explanation, and they never replied once! What can you do! I’d say skip them if you’re looking for a company with integrity. There are many around, like Tradedoubler, Fastclick and Focusin.
· (February 4, 2004 – from a 2-year Commission Junction member) Commission Junction offer a fantastic business opportunity from people working from home (who have a website) wanting to earn an extra income brilliant companies on offer easy to join and add links to – Their payment structure is second to none – I now receive a guaranteed monthly check which is always more every month!
· (April 16, 2004) Commission Junction seemed to be good, but I have just recently requested payment and found my account has been put on payment review for 30 days and then if they think I have increased clicks they will terminate my account. This is very annoying and I don’t think I’m the only one who has had this problem. My advice would be to look elsewhere or deal directly with the companies of which you want to become an affiliate.
· (October 18, 2005) Commission Junction interface is hard to navigate, keeps crashing. Stay well clear.
As you can see the comments are mixed. In the early stages of Commission Junction’s history there were reports of undelivered commissions and inaccurate tracking. On the up side, the last negative comment I’ve read was the one listed above (October 18, 2005). I assume this means that Commission Junction has ironed out their bugs and has definitely moved forward and been able to supply its merchant partners and affiliates with the quality service they promised. With nine months of glowing reviews, I think it is safe to recommend Commission Junction to merchants and publishers all over the net.