Create a Product or Service
The first step in creating your own affiliate program is having something that others would be interested in promoting. Digital products, such as software, music, and ebooks are easiest to promote and sell. With products that are delivered to the customer digitally, there are no production, fulfillment, or printing cost involved.
Digital products are also easy to create. For example, if you’re a life coach, and you have regular monthly tele-seminars, you could record your tele-seminar in digital audio (most often in MP3 format). It doesn’t take much effort to turn that recording into a sellable product.
On the other hand, if you have physical products, such as CDs, or DVDs, or printed course books, you have to consider the cost of shipping and handling, production, etc. to set the affiliate commissions appropriately to reflect those extra costs.
The trickiest kind of product to promote and collect affiliate commissions on are yourservices. To be able to attract people to promote your services, you have to have in place an all-digital tracking system, and sell those services online as well. If you sell a service to a client that was referred to your web site by an affiliate, you should bill him in such a way that your affiliate would be able to have a record of that transaction.