Looking at affiliate programs that you can easily use to supplement your AdSense income, Pepperjam Network is one of the newer affiliate networks on the block, although Pepperjam has been around the search industry for quite some time. And if you frequent the many search engine conferences, you have probably seen Kris Jones speak before, along with many of the Pepperjam team members who are oftn in the expo hall or the networking parties.
Pepperjam Network offers the usual affiliate ads and product feeds that you would expect from any affiliate network, with a diverse number of programs. I did a quick runthrough of their entire affiliate program list, all the programs they offer fall well within the AdSense terms, so you should be able to select any of their ads without running afoul with Google content policies, with the possible exception of a couple of lingerie programs including the Playboy store… but in those cases, it would be dependent on the creative chosen.
I think the part of their affiliate program that AdSense publishers will be most interested in is their lookalike AdSense ad units. They are called pepperjamADS, which are styled very closely to Google AdSense in format, but allows you to use multiple affiliate ads in a single ad unit, the same way multiple advertisers appear in an AdSense ad unit. Once you are approved for some affiliate programs, you can then go and generate pepperjamADS for your site (they won’t show up in the pepperjamADS tab until they are approved, unless you have added one of the many programs with automatic approval). Do note that Google doesn’t allow you to run ads on the same site that mimic AdSense ad units, so the easiest way around this is to use a border if you have blended ad units. If your AdSense already has a border, use pepperjamADS as blended with the border and background of the ad unit matching the background on the page. Otherwise, change the color scheme dramatically.
You can easily use this as an alternate ad as they have formats available in all the standard IAB ad unit sizes or use it as a secondary placement.
For those with blogs in the internet industry, I found programs for both Search Engine Strategies (although many of the banners still say SES NYC) and WebmasterRadio.fm, as well as seomoz, Text Link Ads and Pepperjam Network. They seem to have a fair representation across a variety of industries, and there is a list of “Featured Advertisers” on the site.
For the real important stuff – payments – you can chose between check, direct deposit or PayPal. Payments are sent out twice per month (around the 1st and 15th).
You can find the pepperjamNETWORK here. They do have an affiliate program, although that is not an affiliate link I just discovered their affiliate program and it is pending approval 😉 (Update: That is an affiliate link now, you can visit with non-aff link here). They also have a PJN blog where they announce new affiliate programs, so it could be useful to subscribe if you want to keep an eye on their new programs without having to login frequently… yes, I know many of you love the “add it and forget about it” nature of AdSense and affiliate ads! They also have a main company blog. And if you want to follow them on Twitter, join their Facebook pages, or any of their other social sites, you can find them all here. They are definitely more on top of the whole social thing than all the other affiliate networks I looked at combined!
Not sure how to use an affiliate program with AdSense? Read Supplementing AdSense with affiliate ads. I have also had a couple questions about how to use alternate ads properly, so that will be the next blog post