I remember the feeling the first time I made a sale after joining an affiliate program. Simply by placing a link on my site and someone clicking on the link or buying the product from the site I made money. I don’t have to worry about shipping, keeping stock or shipping.

For example, I make 5 per cent of hotel bookings from Tokyo website. I find this pretty amazing if you think of the investment of owning and operating a hotel or travel agency, versus me running a simple website with my only cost being $10 a month for hosting.

I have been applying to more and more affiliate programs the last couple of weeks. For some programs the income has become so regular I don’t even bother logging into the site and checking my stats, I just wait for my check to arrive in the mail.

Not every program will make you money, and a program for one site, could be useless for another site. The only real way to test a program is to join, copy the code to your site, optimize the advertisement and wait for the money. If you don’t make a sale within at least a month, it’s probably better to take the code off your site and try another program.

How can you find relevant programs for your site? Here are some suggestions:

– Look at the sites that appear on your site if you are using Google Adsense. Just be sure NOT to click on the ad or you will be banned from the program. Check if the site has an affiliate program to join

– Look at competitor sites and see what programs they are running

– Read sites like problogger.net, webmasterworld.com or sitepoint.com

– Implement a search function on the site and record what people are searching for. This is a great way to research what content your site is lacking.

– Read related newspapers and magazines