In internet marketing, an Affiliate is an individual, group, or organization that promotes a product or service which is not their own, in exchange for a commission on any sales that result from their efforts. The affiliate is not an employee. This individual is an independent contractor whose promotional and sales methods are "loosely" regulated by contractual agreement with the affiliated company.

Who Qualifies To Be An Affiliate?

An affiliate can be any gender, any race, and any age, as long as the age does not violate any labor laws or company policies. No advanced formal education is normally required, and there are no extraordinary physical requirements to meet. However, it is a plus for the affiliate to have an "acceptable" level of verbal and written skills, as well as the ability to use a computer.

An affiliate should be someone who is self motivated, as there is little supervision, and the affiliate will often times be working alone. An affiliate should be willing to learn new marketing skills which may prove beneficial to success, such as email marketing, copywriting, and social media marketing. It is helpful if the affiliate is a user of the product or service being sold. It's easier to stick with a product or service that you believe in than one you haven't tried, especially when things are going slowly.

It's important that the affiliate is focused and has a particular written goal. There's always the temptation to jump to the next new thing that may look better than what you already have, and there is ALWAYS a next new thing. So the affiliate should have a viable marketing plan and stick with those things which are winning and eliminate or improve on those things which are not working as well. The affiliate should not easily be discouraged. Everyone who is successful as an affiliate has failed at least once. 

Next: What Is An Affiliate Program?