An affiliate program or associates program is an absolutely must for any ecommerce or lead generation company. Nothing is better that having an army of motivated sales people hyping your products or services on their website or blogs on a performance basis. Affiliates range in ability from being able produce large amounts of traffic to your site to being able to prooduce a sale here or there. When you are looking to launch an affiliate program there are a few things to think about. Do you want to launch an inhouse program, one hosted directly on your site or use a 3rd party platform like Commission Junction or Linkshare to run the entire program. The inhouse approach is good because you can track a lot of your other types of online campaigns through the same tracking system as your affiliates. The most desirable scenario is to run an inhouse affiliate program as well as run a program through Commission Junction, this way you can allow people to signup directly with your company and work more personally with them. I personally think CJ is the best 3rd party network due to all the great affiliates they have in the system and the tracking seems very accurate, although there is always some inevitable loss of clicks. My suggestion would be to build your own inhouse affiliate tracking software or hire programmers to do so for you. I have yet to see a reliable and customizable affiliate program software that you can buy and pull in. You have to decide how much you can pay out to the affiliates of your program. Try to be as aggressive as possible with the payout to incentivize your affiliates to produce as much as possible. The more money your affiliate make per sale or per lead, the more they will push and market your products online. Another thing you have to take into consideration is how well your website converts visitors into leads or sales. This is paramount to running a successful affiliate program. Make sure to work on making your website as trustworthly as possible so people will be willing to spend their money with you or fill out your form. If you adhere to these basic principles, you will be able to launch and run a very successful affiliate program. Now go out and launch your new affiliate program! Contact this website if you need assistance in launching or effectively managing your new or existing affiliate program.