Affiliate marketers have a variety of ways that they promote the companies they are affiliated with. Some use email marketing. Some prefer to build websites and drive traffic to them. Each HTML newsletter or website has a different flavor, so to speak. There are different layouts, colors and voices.
Because of the variety in affiliate promotional methods, it is essential to provide affiliates with lots of linking options to choose from. Some prefer to use text links. Others prefer graphics. Many use a combination of both. Give affiliates the option to create their own links; most of them will not be graphic designers. So it is up to you to give them lots of graphics options.
There are many things to consider when designing graphics for affiliates. Whether you are designing them yourself or hiring a graphic designer to do them, it is important to take some things into consideration.
The size of graphics available can be the difference between an affiliate using graphics to promote the program or not using them. Layouts often dictate what sizes of graphics a Webmaster can use. If they are too big or too small, they could look bad or even throw off the proportions of the website.
The most common sizes of graphics used are the 468x60 banner and the 125x125 button. It's important to have a variety of graphics in these sizes. You can also offer some that are larger or smaller than these sizes. Many affiliates like to use "skyscrapers" which are 100-200 pixels wide and up to 600 pixels high. This allows them to showcase a number of products or just make the graphic more prominent.
Websites come in all sorts of color combinations. Offering graphics in a variety of colors will allow affiliates to choose the ones that best match their websites. Clashing colors are not pretty and they can send visitors running in the other direction.
You might even consider offering graphics with different levels of contrast. While it is important to make sure the contrast is sufficient for easy reading, lower contrast graphics might fit in better on lower contrast websites.
Static versus Animated
Animated graphics are eye-catching. Too many animated graphics on one page can be annoying. Some affiliates may not like to use animated graphics at all. So it is important to offer both static and animated options.
Offering affiliates plenty of graphics to choose from will allow them to find one that fits well with their particular website. It also gives them the opportunity to experiment with different ones to see which ones convert the best for them. When your affiliates find a graphic that works well for them, it is good for all concerned.