It Cost Me Nothing To Becom An Amazon Affiliate!
Here's why I believe that to be the case. Your helping them to get business, period. Sure they will have guidelines to get you approved. Some may even forward you to a third party provider like www.commissionjunction.com or even www.linkshare.com.
There is always one thing they will all request of you though, and it's important. You guessed it, a web site of your own that meets their standards. Yeah I said it. Most readers at this point say well doesn't that cost money? Here's the truth. Sure, but it doesn't have to cost you thousands.
If you are a web builder by trade however, you may find these programs will handcuff you of sorts. In particular.. placing forms. You may know the code or scripting but the program has their coding formated and may not always allow you you to use a isp .php or even .cgi web form mailer. I could be wrong, so If any of you techies have tested that and found out differently let me know.
There are always companies out there that will sell you an affiliate opportunity through them or even some that will just build you an affordable referral site that will get you approved easiliy and affordable. Here are a few that will do it for just a few hundred instead of five hundred or better. The first is www.creativecashflowgroup.com the second is www.cryskell.com. There are also a few businesses that you can buy in a box, but buyer beware. The affordable upfront, get ya in the rear tatic is still alive and well. No, not all companies are bad, just make sure they have a valid company offer like an Ebay or Amazon affiliate site. Some companies out there will tell you that they will build you a site all you need to do is find a drop shipper. This is the oldest trick in the book. They may just be banking on the fact that you cant find a drop shipper.
Now that you have a working idea on the affiliate marketing opportunity, go out and seek wealth and remember you will put into it, to get out of it. It's a business, not an automatic pilot.