How did the affiliate marketing start?
The first concept in commissions for a referred business started already in November 1994 in E-commerce. This happened before all of the components of the affiliate marketing online really kick-off and the internet become an everyday use tool for most people in the world.
Affiliate marketing as a digital opportunity to grow online was founded by William J Tobin, the owner of PC flowers & gifts. The company launched on the Prodigy Network in 1989 and was active until 1996 with their service. The year 1993 Pc flowers & gifts made sales with a revenue of over $6 million per year. 1998 they strengthened the concept of getting commissions on sales to the Prodigy network further.
1994, Tobin launched a beta version of PC Flowers & Gifts on the internet cooperated with IBM, who owned 50% of Prodigy. The year after PC Flowers & Gifts started a website with commercial activities and had 2,600 affiliate marketing partners globally on the World Wide Web. Tobin applied for patents on affiliate marketing and got approved both from the US and Japan in the years 1996, 2000, 2007, and 2009.
November 1994 the company CDnow created several websites for their products online to buyers. They discovered by review and listing albums with artists on their page could bring many visitors wanting to buy more. Most of these sites had a link taking visitors to CDnow that they could purchase the albums. The CDnow at that time wasn´t an original owner of all the music productions but could reach out on the internet. It was Geffen Records who was a producer and had the first idea of selling online, asked CDnow for help to concretize the marketing by linking to Geffen´s website in the end.
Amazon.com was born as an associate program in July 1996. The associate program could have banner and text links on their site for different books, or just link directly to the Amazon home page.In that way, the association company got commissions for their referrers. Amazon wasn´t the first merchant offering affiliate program but the first which become famous worldwide to having a foundation model for further programs after.
In February 2000 Amazon searched for patent and got submitted in 1997 on most of the components in an affiliate program and was the initial inspirational source for the most of affiliate programs. Those affiliate programs were Autoweb.com October 1995, Kbkids.com/BrainPlay.com January 1996, Epage April 1996, and many more.
How affiliate marketing has grown since then?
Affiliate marketing has continually grown rapidly since the start year. The e-commerce website was viewed as a premarketing tool when integrating with affiliate marketing became bigger than the original one which was offline business. One report showed that affiliate networks in 2006 generated £2,16 billion just in the United Kingdom. Research from MarketingSherpa estimated in 2006 affiliates all over the world earned US$6.5 billion in commissions from many different categories. All from personal finance, gaming and gambling, travel, telecom, education, publishing, and gathering leads than main advertising.
In 2006 the sectors that mostly cooperated with affiliate marketing were the adult gambling, retail industries, and file-sharing services. Those three sectors which expected most succeed with the help of affiliate marketing are the mobile phone, finance, and travel sectors. And then came entertainment most in gaming, interned based services specifically broadband sectors. Also in the niche of how to grow business to business marketers and advertisers.
Bloggers and website creators under the process of affiliate marketing based on Web 2.0 had huge success in the world. You can say Web 2.0 had become the platform for merchants and affiliates to be able to communicate with each other. It even opens up for private bloggers, writers, and independent website owners to do affiliate marketing. Publishers with low web traffics are allowed to place ads with content on websites.
New technology creates other forms of media that have impacted how companies, brands, and ad networks reach out ads to visitors. On Youtube, the video makers can now put advertisers from Google affiliate networks. Meanwhile, the users of terms and the tracking of digital development have made it difficult for advertisers to create false marketing. Thanks to emerging black sheep, the speed and effectiveness of affiliate marketing have never been better.
The final thoughts
The main question in this post was, did you think the affiliate marketing could rule the world in 2020 and after? Considering how the preselling idea started as E-commerce and then grown drastically to transform in affiliate marketing, with the main attractive concept of commissions per sale triggered many entrepreneurs wanted to reach for success and financial freedom. This indicated how the total revenue in affiliate marketing had surprisingly increased to billions of dollars worldwide. Thanks to the first affiliate network Amazon had put the hardest effort to apply for patents in affiliate marketing and become the world biggest platform in the retail of products, inspired a bunch of other affiliate networks to do the same later on. Now there is unaccountable of affiliate programs offer opportunities for those who are interested over all of the world to be able to make multi-figured income stream online. Due to the advantages in affiliate marketing allowing that you can work anywhere you want and then deciding how much time and resources to invest, seems to attract more people to want to start immediately. And the increased number of successful top affiliates owned giant companies with billions of dollars in revenues seems to be a real fact, is a high potential in the hypotheses that the affiliate marketing will rule the world!!!!