Now, this is 100% ancient in terms of the Internet. I've had an Amazon.com Associates account since 1997, when I started fooling around with HTML and established some basic, incredibly lame websites.
Affiliate programs work like this: someone clicks on a link to a store. They buy something. If they click on YOUR link from YOUR site, you get a % of their sale.
For instance, we eat a gluten-free diet. We recently discovered Bob's Red Mill Gluten-Free Chocolate Chip Cookies.
Click on that link. I dare you. It takes you to Amazon.com's Grocery section, where you will find a 4-pack of the chocolate chip cookie mix for 31% off the retail price of $6 per bag, right?
(Don't get me started on the cost of gluten-free products. $2.40 for a box of mac n' cheese, and that's the sale price. I might cry.)
If you buy that 4-pack of Bob's Red Mill Chocolate Chip Cookie Mix, I get a cut, anywhere from 5-10% of the purchase price, depending on the whim of the Amazon.com marketing gods, who determine how much to throw our way.
If you don't have a blog or a website, you might be wondering what this has to do with you, and with making money working from home.
Let me ask you: how much do you spend on online shopping each year? $500? $1,000? $5,000? More? What's 5-10% of $5K? Do the math, and now I might have your attention.
I spend a LOT on Amazon.com, because their bulk gluten-free products are the cheapest price anywhere. I buy through my own Amazon.com link and shave 5-10% off their sale prices. You can email your affiliate link to friends and family and encourage them to buy through your associates account.
You can--check terms and services before doing this--link to Amazon or other companies' products when talking about them on message boards, and make a small affiliate commission. You can help a charity of your choice by setting up an affiliate store on their website and encourage their supporters to shop through it.
But more to the point: you can use affiliate links through Amazon.com, or Commission Junction, to affiliatize your Internet life and make a little money.
By the way, those gluten-free cookies are GOOD. You know you want to click. Click and buy. Now.