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Selecting Merchant Partners
Sky Fishing is built around providing content about fishing
in Montana. Part of the fun of creating this website was incorporating
merchant products into the site.
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One of the most enjoyable aspects of building a home based web business around a content site (such as bigskyfishing.com) is shopping for merchant partners and then coming up with creative ways to incorporate their products and services into your web site. In many respects, this process can allow you to make a "store of your dreams" without having to invest a single penny in merchandise, a storefront, hired help and all the other costs that go with running a retail operation.
You can see this at bigskyfishing.com. I've always wanted to have my own outdoor camping and fishing gear store - ever since I was a little kid, in fact. To create such a store in the bricks and mortar world would require easily more than a million dollars to start, and would have massive ongoing costs associated with running such an operation.
And that is the beauty of a home based web business. You can choose what products to promote on your site, incorporating them however you want into you web site, without any cost to yourself (or risk, for that matter). And my love of outdoor and fishing gear can be seen throughout bigskyfishing.com, with the numerous individual product listings and stores such as the Fly Shop that provides a comprehensive listing of fly fishing gear.
The Internet is filled with merchants that have quality affiliate programs. The key word here is quality. When shopping around for merchant partners, several things need to be kept in mind. These are:
Now that you know what to look for, and what not to look for, in selecting merchant partners for you home based web business, the next step is to find them. Merchants, broadly speaking, run their affiliate programs in one of two ways. They either do it themselves (private affiliate programs) or they hire out an affiliate network to manage things for them. Each of these methods have their pluses and minuses, although the sheer number of programs offered by the affiliate networks makes shopping around for merchant partners much easier. Listed below are links to affiliate networks as well as some private programs.
Major Affiliate Networks
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