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Affiliate Programs

Almost every web site on the Internet participates in some type of affiliation program. This could be in the form of the exchange of banner ads, the placement of banner ads to help generate revenue, special advertising and corporate sponsorships.

Sites like rely on affiliation programs to help defer the cost of maintaining our web site. The way this works is that we receive payment either on a click-through basis (usually a few cents) for each click-through from our site to our affiliation, or by the number of page views.

To give you a specific example, lets say we have an affiliation with the Widget Corporation. Our arrangement with them pays us .003 cents for each click-through from our site to theirs. In addition, The Widget Corporation pays us a commission for each product you purchase on that pass-through. This works well but what happens if you bookmark the Widget Corporations web site and for future visits go directly to there site bypassing us? In this case we do not receive any revenue for your visit so it is important for you to use as your starting point.

Some affiliations are quite valuable to you as well as us in that they not only generate revenue for Healthlinks but provide a real service to you. Some examples can be seen on our home page and include Amazon and eLibrary. Both of these affiliations provide valuable search capabilities that are free for you to use in the event you cannot locate the resource you are looking for here. Other affiliations such as Obitz, 1800 Wheelchairs and American Express provide what we believe are good selection and good value.

A well thought out web site will try to balance their need for revenue with real value for you by limiting the types and numbers of affiliations they have. There is nothing worse than visiting a web site and being bombarded with pop-up windows, offensive ads that offer questionable products or services and time consuming graphic downloads.  This not only drives traffic away from the site but overshadows the site content which may have real value. If you canít get past the home page, youíll probably not stick around to see the content.

In conclusion, affiliation programs do provide value for both the web site and the visitor if presented in a tasteful and conservative manner

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