Affiliate marketing has been a successful business model for several years now. It presents an excellent opportunity for bloggers and small business owners to monetize their web platforms in order to become third party sales outlets for larger retail organizations. For the latter, having an array of affiliates signed-up to promote their products presents a perfect opportunity for tapping into a worldwide market for which they don’t need to spend anything on advertising. So when budding affiliates are searching for the best recommendations for products, which are the current top five affiliate marketing networks out there?

Clickbank

Clickbank has  enjoyed the status of being a popular affiliate partner network for some time: it was one of the very first. In terms of products it is geared towards the digital market, with its range focused on items such as eBooks. It is free to sign-up to, which makes it ideal for small businesses and entrepreneurs who are relatively new to this form of third party advertising. As soon as you have become a member of Clickbank you automatically gain access to millions of eBooks that are being sold by other members. This gives the ability to tap into a market that shows every indication of rising all the time.

A note of caution is that the quality standards of certain items are sometimes open for debate. On the plus side, the commissions offered by Clickbank tend to be much higher than their competitors, and payment is always timeous.

Top Offers

With the incentive of a $1,000 welcome bonus, TopOffers.com is way ahead of much of its affiliate marketing network competitors. Its strength is that in offering a variety of programs it also provides members with concise information about marketing opportunities. It is also excellent when it comes to optimization techniques.

Rakuten Linkshare

Although it is another of the most long-standing affiliate marketing networks, Rakuten Linkshare shows no signs any diminishing popularity. It stays competitive in an increasingly saturated marketplace by ensuring it is as user-friendly as possible for its wide customer base. The platform it offers its affiliate members comes with several very distinct features. One of the aspects making it attractive to beginners is that it offers a system of rotating banner ads aimed at specific products. This makes these much more convenient to administer as a promotional tool in the longer term. It also allows for multiple versions of adverts to be deployed with a single piece of called, making it very attractive for new customers who might not be as ‘techy.’

Amazon Associates

By far the largest affiliate marketing network, Amazon has numerous advantages for its merchants and their affiliates. In sheer weight of numbers there are so many opportunities for establishing a good business turnover. With one and a half million sellers to tap into, this is undoubtedly an ideal entry point for beginner marketers.

CJ Affiliate

CJ Affiliate offers a diverse range of programs: several thousand merchant partners are selling millions of products. This makes it particularly attractive to entrepreneurs who may be considering different options at the initial stage of setting up their third party business. It also presents choices for those affiliate marketers who are keen to branch out by promoting multiple products rather than focusing on niche areas.