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Associates - introduction 

A powerful way to drive traffic to an e-commerce site is to run an associate scheme (also known as an affiliate scheme). Whilst there are third-party systems which provide this service, you have the most control if you run the scheme yourself through the site.

The essence of an associate scheme is that you get people (associates) to place links on their website which link to your site. If people follow those links, and then make a purchase, then the associate is rewarded with a percentage of the purchase price as their commission.

Their commission builds up in an account, managed by the site, and periodically, if the amount has risen above a threshold, you pay out their commission.

The associate scheme described here automates everything apart from the paying out, that part being something you will generally want to manage manually anyway. 


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