What Is Affiliate Couponing & How Is It Beneficial?

[ 0 ] September 5, 2011 |

You’ve prrrobably never actually wondered that, but knowledge is power, so it’s a good idea to understand every aspect of couponing. Sure, all a consumer really needs to know is how much cash a coupon keeps in the ol’ wallet. A coupon is just a coupon… Right?

Short answer: Yes. Long answer: Yes, if the coupon works.

The internet today is flooded with sites offering massive waves of coupons. Many are user-submitted. Their benefits are numerous, but these sites make up the CWWW – Coupon Wild Wild West. Regulations? Smegulations. Anyone can submit any coupon – whether valid or expired, good or bad. (More details on user-generated coupons in a future post.)

So What Are Affiliate Coupons?

Affiliate coupons are at the other end of the spectrum. They’re provided by online retailers through affiliate networks (LinkShare, Commission Junction and Google Affiliate Network, to name a few) and are intended for public sharing. These are essentially what FabulousSavings.com calls “merchant-approved coupons”: approved by the merchant for mass usage and sharing.

These affiliate networks allow retailers to easily provide coupons to website owners who then put them up on their site or blog. This helps the retailer net in more sales from various highways on the internet.

Where Can You Find Affiliate Coupons?

Blogs: Many bloggers, not just coupon blogs, cash in on their blogs’ popularity by joining affiliate networks. They put up banners featuring coupons from retailers associated with their blog’s theme. For example, a tech blog might place a Best Buy coupon on their site.

Review Sites: In-depth reviews draw in online foot traffic and retain online eyeballs. Most review sites offer a link that directs you to an affiliated retailer to buy the product that was reviewed.

Coupon Sites: Duh, right? Not so fast. Lots of coupon sites out there do offer affiliate coupons, but remember: many are mixed in with user-generated coupons. You might come across lots of user-submitted non-workers before you get to one. FabulousSavings.com, on the other hand, only has merchant-approved online coupons.

Pros & Cons of Using Affiliate Coupons

Just as user-generated coupons, affiliate coupons have numerous benefits. But it’s not all sunny blue skies and sweet apple pies when it comes to affiliate couponing. There are, of course, cons as well.

  • Free to use
  • Those offering affiliate coupons are paid on commission. This means you, the consumer, don’t have to pay a pretty penny.

  • Not stealing from the merchant
  • Some user-generated coupons are from newsletter sign-ups. Some are special discounts retailers offer consumers to amend order discrepancies. Many are meant for single use, so the retailer might not expect multiple redemptions of the discount.

  • Backed by people
  • If the affiliate coupon doesn’t work, you can contact the blog or the site. FabulousSavings.com has customer service to help you through the check-out process or contact the affiliate network to find out why the coupon doesn’t work.

  • Exclusives available
  • Big coupon sites like FabulousSavings.com can negotiate with the account managers that deal with retailers. You might find discounts for online stores that usually don’t offer good deals.

  • No spread like wild-fire savings
  • Because the coupons are meant for mass usage, the savings might not be comparable to crazy single-time deals.

We hope this gives you a better understanding of affiliate couponing. Leave a comment below with any questions! Can you think of more pros and cons?

This is the third post in an 8-part blog series. Each Monday we will break down the different elements of couponing and show you how you can use them to become a savvy couponer. Related posts in this series:

Category: shopping tips

About Shannon: Shannon is a savvy saver and lover of all things fashion and beauty. As a lover of pop-culture, she'll keep you up-to-date on all the hottest news and trends. You can find her tweeting on @FabulousSavings. View author profile.

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