16

What Is Rakuten Affiliate Network (Formally Linkshare)

Rakuten Marketing

My Rakuten Review

You may have landed here because you are wondering what is Rakuten Affiliate Network. No matter what landed you here, I will answer that question for you.

If you are in affiliate marketing or have thought about getting into affiliate marketing, you may have heard of Rakuten Affiliate Marketing. Consumers can also buy products from the Rakuten website.

Rakuten Affiliate Network is a platform where companies join in order to promote their products (advertisers) and affiliates join in order to promote the products (publishers) of those companies. At Rakuten the advertisers and publishers can connect with one another. But wait there’s more.

Yes, it is SORT of like ClickBank, except that Rakuten doesn’t have “Scammy” products. Their member site is set up similar to ClickBank. But wait, there is more to this. I will share what I discovered further down.

Rakuten has signed some very reputable and well-known brands. I love seeing brands/companies that I have heard of and known about.

If you do not known the company, you should always ask questions and do your research before recommending the product to others. YES, you need to research the products and the advertisers, even the ones on Rakuten. I’ll explain further down.

Rakuten Affiliate Network

Founded in 1997 in 2005 Rakuten acquired LinkShare and in 2014 it was re branded to Rakuten Affiliate Network per Wikipedia

Founded by Hiroshi Mikitani a Japanese billionaire (also per Wikipedia)

Located all over the world including the United States, the headquarters is in Tokyo

Voted the #1 affiliate marketing network 7 years in a row

Price for publishers to join Free

Price for advertisers is unknown

My personal rank 4 out of 5 (the user interface could use improvement)

Is Rakuten For You

Before deciding if it is for you, I would continue to read before making that decision. If you are looking to promote products and earn a commission, then Rakuten MAY be for you.

If you are an advertiser with a legitimate product and you are seeking the assistance of publishers to help get more sales of your product/products, then Rakuten MAY be for you. Last but not least,

if you are a consumer who might be shopping for a specific item or you are comparing prices, then Rakuten MAY be for you.

So why did I say Rakuten MAY be for you? Anytime you are going to make a purchase from the internet, are looking to have someone promote your products, or are looking to become a publisher through a marketing affiliate program, you always need to research them.

Yes, you heard right. I will include what I discovered about Rakuten, in hopes of saving you time from having to do it yourself.

I of course can’t tell you my experience from the advertisers point of view as I am not trying to sell anyone anything. Unfortunately, I won’t be of much help, but I will provide you with some help.

Products And Services

Rakuten offers many products that you can buy. As I stated earlier they have well-known name brands such as pictured below. They also have several services like hosting services and digital products as well.Name Brands at Rakuten

They have everything from tooth brushes to T.V. There is even a bulk shopping club that will deliver the products for free if you spend over $49.00.

Don’t get your hopes up though. ClubBulk may not have EVERYTHING that you are looking for. They aren’t like Costco or any of the well known companies providing products for sale in bulk quantities.

Rakuten BlubBulk products

Anytime we make purchases online, we definitely need to check the reviews of the site and of the seller as well as look to see how long they have been selling with the current site.

We have all come to known and love the popular Amazon, but that doesn’t mean you don’t need to check the seller out, right?

I am sure I don’t need to remind you that the internet and the online world has become more convenient over the years, but there are even more scam artists as well. Until you known what to look for, you need to research as much as you can.

Customer Reviews

While researching the reviews from customers of Rakuten, most were from dissatisfied customers. But these were customers who bought physical products from the advertisers.

Many of these customers were upset because they were instructed by Rakuten that they would have to contact the seller in order to get a refund or information on where the product was.

Here are a few that I wanted to share with you in order to give you a better idea of the types of complaints that were turned in by different customers. These were found on Consumer Affairs.

I personally think that many of the complaints were legit. Rakuten may not be responsible for the deal that is being made by the consumer and advertiser, BUT maybe they should pick better advertisers.

I would also like to add that Rakuten should consider participating in Consumer Affairs in order to avoid them gaining a “bad customer ranking”. They could use the reviews to better the overall consumer experience.

Rakuten ReviewRakuten reviewsRakuten Reviews

Tools For The Trade

Rakuten has tools and training to help you along your journey to find affiliates and promote products. They also have ways of advertisers helping publishers maximize their commissions.

The only tools I was able to find were about using the items in the menu in the back end, back office, whatever you would like to call it. There are also videos to help you as well.

Menu In Rakuten back office

 

Each item on the menu will open a drop down. They are pretty self-explanatory. To me this isn’t considered “tools”. Tools would be a keyword research tool, a website builder platform etc.

Programs is where you would go in order to find a product to promote. You can use categories to search for a specific type of product, search new advertisers and even premium advertisers.

Links will allow you to get links, access product link finder and deep links. There is a compliance tool located here that is a JavaScript snippet that you place in your website title. It will update your advertisers information automatically when there is a change in it, as long as you are partnered with the advertiser.

You can run report to see how you are doing with the product you have chosen, and you can generate links for the product as well.

Reports overview will tell you how many impressions, clicks, EPC (earnings per click), sales and commissions.

You advertiser will have banners, links and pictures that you can use on your website to help you promote the product that you have chosen.

Support

For publishers you can click on support and then choose live chat. I did use the live chat and he was very nice and polite. However, I was given a link to go to get the answer to my question.

As for customer support, you can get an idea from the reviews provided at Consumer Affairs. There were only a couple of good ones that I seen.

For publishers there are tips that you can read that will help you with creating content, getting traffic etc. This is what they consider training. There are also videos (50 minutes long).

What I Think Of Rakuten- Legit Or Not

Rakuten is definitely legit. As I stated before, no matter how you are planning to use their program, you need to do your research.

I think as a publisher, advertiser and customer, it is a service I would recommend although I would still suggest that everyone proceed with caution.

With the way the internet is nowadays, scammers are very intelligent and are able to make their way into even the best programs

If you are wanting to promote products then you I would start by trying to promote products through an advertiser that you known and trust, like WalMart etc.

The training can help you, even as a beginner. I would recommend paying close attention to the training and even take notes in order.

As a publisher you will need to write content and then choose products that fit your niche. You will also need a website and a means for getting traffic, free or paid.

I hope that I have given you a thorough breakdown of Rakuten and that you found this to be of great use. If you have any questions, comments or concerns, please leave them down below. I love hearing from you as much as I love to respond.

Thank you and I look forward to hearing from you.

 

Wishing you the best in all you do

Lee Ann