Becoming a rakeback affiliate

This article was posted on September 3, 2007

I bet you heard about rakeback and about how one could make money with it. From a player's perspective, it's advantages are obvious, so I reckon there's no use in going into details on that level. In this article, I want to take a look at rakeback from the other side of the barricade, namely from the affiliate's point of view.

If you have a poker site, or one about rakeback, that is fairly well trafficked, I suppose the thought of letting it make some money for you has already crossed your mind. You can sign up with a poker website and send players to them directly, that'd be one way to put it to use. The problem with that is (believe me, I tried it), that there's nothing really special in the offer you try to entice players with. Sign-up bonuses are no longer looked at by good poker players, and since you will earn a percentage of the rake, players sent by you generate at the poker room, good players are exactly the kind that you need most.

The advantages of playing with rakeback or cashback are so obvious, that most reasonable players will only play with such a deal. If you sign up to a poker room (or to several ones) as a rakeback affiliate, on one hand, your conversion rate will be much better, on the other hand, you'll have a lot a work on your hands.
You see, delivering rakeback to your players once every month, is by no means a simple undertaking. You need to collect the percentage of the rake you agreed upon from the poker room you're associated with, then you need to distribute the rakeback due to your players, withholding the percentage that represents your affiliate revenue.

Put like this, it all sounds simple, but when you need to do everything according to a strict schedule, things don't look so rosy anymore. You can't really mess around with deadlines either, or you'll taint your reputation, and your site will be avoided by potential players in the future.

What you have to do is to find a compromise. You want to advertise rakeback offers to your would-be players, because that's where the money is at, but you don't want all the fuss that comes with it. You have to become a rakeback sub-affiliate. There are well established rakeback sites out there that have all their logistics fine-tuned to handle the intricate financial issues they're dealing with.

Sign up as an affiliate with one of these sites, instead of doing it directly with the poker rooms. That way your share of the revenue will take a cut, but all you'll have to do is keep sending players. You won't need to hire any additional personnel to handle the intricacies of the business, and if you do the math, you'll soon realize you're a lot better off in this setup than being a direct rekaback affiliate yourself.

If you do decide to follow this path, the main challenge you'll be faced with is to find a site you can trust. There are all sorts of criteria you should guide yourself by when looking for a good site, but the bottom line is, without trust nothing in the world will help you find a lucrative relationship.
I was fortunate enough to come across, the site I work with, coming off some bitter experiences with some - much more prestigious - websites. I can recommend to you, if you're looking for someone trustworthy to team up with. They're after long-term goals, so messing around with your stats and denying you petty affiliate sums is not part of their agenda.

Don't be fooled into thinking that just because a site has been around for a while and because it offers live affiliate tracking, they can't mess around with your stats. I know that they can, and I know that they will, too. The worst thing is, there's nothing you can do about it.
I never had such problems with, as a matter of fact, I'm doing much better now than I thought was possible when I first started looking for an affiliate setup. Definitely something for you to consider.

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