Affiliate Model

In contrast to the generalized portal, which seeks to drive a high volume of traffic to one site, the affiliate model, provides purchase opportunities wherever people may be surfing. It does this by offering financial incentives (in the form of a percentage of revenue) to affiliated partner sites. The affiliates provide purchase-point click-through to the merchant. It is a pay-for-performance model -- if an affiliate does not generate sales, it represents no cost to the merchant. The affiliate model is inherently well-suited to the web, which explains its popularity. Variations include, banner exchange, pay-per-click, and revenue sharing programs. [Barnes & Noble, Amazon.com]

Banner Exchange -- trades banner placement among a network of affiliated sites.

Pay-per-click -- site that pays affiliates for a user click-through.

Revenue Sharing -- offers a percent-of-sale commission based on a user click-through in which the user subsequently purchases a product.