Affiliate links have long been a way for website owners to earn money from their pages. A regular advertisement is an endorsement for a product that’s obvious to everyone. Even a link can be framed as an advertisement with the right wording. Affiliate links on the other hand, are different. The site owner doesn’t get paid for a certain number of views. Neither do they get paid when a user clicks on them. Instead, the payment happens when someone makes a purchase through the link via a tracking code.
Unlike advertisements, affiliate links need not endorse the product they’re selling. For example, a site could merely be a “price comparison web page with links to different types of products. The site owner doesn’t claim that one product is better than the other. Only that the links leading out imply a financial relationship between the website and the product.