Welcome to tip #4 in our list of 100 affiliate marketing tips to spark your business!

For today’s tip we’re looking at another type of affiliate commission structure that many new affiliates aren’t aware of, or perhaps just overlook: two tier commissions.

How It Works

Two tier commissions are affiliate commissions that pay different levels of commissions for downstream referrals.

affiliate programs with two tier commissions

Think of this as being slightly closer to network marketing, in that you create a chain of earnings not just from the people you refer, but from their referrals as well.

Typically, you will receive a fixed percentage or bounty for referring an individual directly, and then a smaller fixed percentage or bounty for every person that your referral then recruits as a customer.

For example, let’s say that you have a program that offers a total of 25% commissions, but those commissions are broken into two tiers. You might earn 20% for the individual that comes directly from your affiliate link, and then an additional 5% for each second tier user they refer. Your tier 1 customer, in turn, also results in an additional 5% going to the affiliate that referred you into the program.

Some aggressive programs even have three tier programs, where you might earn, say, an additional 1% for every person your referral’s referrals bring on board.

The point is, it’s a business model that can quickly translate into additional profits.

Where To Find These Programs

Unfortunately, lucrative multi-tier affiliate programs are not easy to come by. Most of the best “downstream” referral programs exist in the offline world, as network marketing companies. Keller Williams, CutCo, Avon, and SendOut Cards all work this way, to give a few examples.

If you want to take this route, you might consider finding an “offline” program to promote, and use your online marketing skills to get leads in the door for them.

In the digital world, the most common example is hosting providers.