Wholesale affiliate programs are different from dropshipping. With dropshipping, YOU are the vendor. With affiliate programs, the OTHER company is the vendor.

First, let’s explain what an affiliate program is. Let’s say you have a blog where you talk about coffee. A few times a month, you post about how much you love coffee and you even mention your favorite brands and flavors.  Now, those big brands probably have an affiliate program for you to sign up for. Most major companies & retailers do! You can usually find the link on the footer of their websites.

a wholesale affiliate program is where you refer customers to the wholesaler to buy. just like sending people to your favorite coffee brand.

After you sign up for that coffee company’s affiliate program, you would get a special tracking URL link. You hyperlink that URL on the words in your blog posts to send people to that place to buy. Or you place image “ads” on the page for people to check out what you like. When a person clicks that ad or link, they will go to the brand or retailer’s website, and you will earn a commission for every sale that is made.

Commission amounts vary across the board for every company, so you can either shop around for the best commission or only promote your favorite places to buy from. Which is ideal, since the blog is about YOUR favorites!

Just like we said at the beginning… With an affiliate program, you are not the vendor, the other company is. The customer is going to their website to buy. You aren’t the one processing the orders and charging customers. The company you are referring people to will.

A Wholesale Affiliate Program is the exact same thing. You are promoting products, but not necessarily selling them. You are sending customers to the other website to buy.

How Does Dropshipping Differ?

With drop shipping, you are the one that is offering the products for sale on your website. You are the vendor. You have a merchant account and will charge the customers the retail price + shipping/handling costs. Once you collect the funds from the customer, you then place the order with the dropshipping wholesaler. The Wholesaler that dropships will then ship the product to your customer for you.

With drop shipping, the wholesaler is your fulfillment center and you handle all the money. With an affiliate program, the retailer or wholesaler handles everything and will pay you a commission every month for sales that you generated.

Wholesale Affiliate Programs or Dropshipping? Which is better?

It depends. If you only want to blog about your favorite things, then an affiliate program is better. If you want to control the retail prices, directly communicate with the customers, and actually run a store online, then you need to work directly with dropshipping wholesalers.

Which earns more?

Again, it depends. If you get fantastic wholesale prices, you can actually earn more by having an online store than referring people to other websites for a potential commission.

So shop around and figure out what’s best for you, best for the type of business you want to run and what level of involvement you want.

By Tisha Hedges

Director of Operations for Worldwide Brands, Inc

12 thoughts on “Wholesale Affiliate Programs”
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