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FAQS ▼

Please read this FAQ page carefully before contacting the Co-op.
Do I need to be a member of the Co-op to join the Affiliate Program?

Yes, you must be a Co-op member as the program is administered through your Co-op account. Information about the Co-op's program and your affiliate activity will be included on your "My SmartPoints Balance" page. If you aren't a member yet, simply click the JOIN NOW button in the upper right corner of this page. Membership is free and confidential.

Why must I have a blog or website related to homeschooling and not just teachers or education in general?

As much as we respect teachers and value all education, the Co-op caters specifically to homeschooling families.

I am an international member and am based outside the U.S. Can I join the program?

Due to the tax regulations of various countries outside the U.S., the Co-op does not currently accept applications from international members outside the U.S., or from members in the U.S. Territories.

Why is there an approval process?

For most affiliate programs, there is some type of approval process. We want to check that any blog or website that might be helping us spread the word about the Co-op is focused on homeschooling. We also check that the blog or website does not contain any inappropriate content as sometimes this does happen.

Lastly, we want to make sure your blog or website is legitimate as sadly sometimes blogs or sites join affiliate programs in order to defraud the company sponsoring the program.

How does the Co-op Affiliate Program work?

Once you are approved as a Co-op affilate, you can publish banners or text links on your homeschooling blog or website, or, send your specially-coded links to your followers via email or social media posts. You will find these links to our Affiliate Banners and Link page on your "My SmartPoints Balance" Page. Then,

  • When someone clicks your affiliate link or banner, they are navigated to the Co-op website.
  • If they buy any qualifying product within 45 days, you'll receive an affiliate credit and be notified by email.
  • After 45 days (leaving time for us to reverse awards if the customer returns the product), you can redeem your affiliate credits for product or cash.

I am based in Pennsylvania. Why can't I join the Co-op Affiliate Program?

Pennsylvania requires a site to collect and remit sales taxes based on any affiliate sales in the state. We would love to have you in our program, but the administrative burden of collecting and remitting sales taxes to your state is onerous and prohibitive for a small company like ours.

As other states sales tax regulations change, we might add states to this list, too.

I've heard my state requires that sales tax be remitted by the Co-op if I make an affiliate sale to someone in my state. How does this affect me?

There are states (namely Arkansas, Connecticut, Georgia, Kansas, Maine, Minnesota, New Jersey, New York, North Carolina, and Rhode Island) that also require a site to collect and remit sales taxes based on affiliate sales in that state. These states have a certain aggregate threshold that needs to be reached before this happens. Should you operate in one of these states, and, we reach these aggregate annual sales thresholds, we will be required to discontinue our affiliate program in that specific state, and, unfortunately, you will no longer be eligible to participate in our program.

Do I need to send you a W-9 (Request for Taxpayer Identification and Certification Form) to join the Co-op's Affiliate Program?

The Co-op is required by law to obtain a W-9 from any affiliate who is paid $600 or more in a calendar year by the Co-op. During the calendar year, should you reach this threshold when redeeming your affiliate credits for cash, we will provide instructions for you to send this to us. Until we have received your W-9, you will not be able to redeem your affiliate credits for cash.

Where can I see my affiliate activity?

Simply sign into your Co-op account at any time and go to the "My SmartPoints Balance" page where we have a separate section at the top for your affiliate information.

How much can I earn?

Once you are approved for the Co-op Affiliate Program, you will have access to a list of the qualifying products and their corresponding affiliate credit percentage on your "My SmartPoints Balance" Page in your Co-op account. Affiliate credits are calculated based on the member price paid to the Co-op, exclusive of service fees, shipping, and sales taxes, multiplied by the affiliate credit percentage. The percentage is 10% for qualifying products in the program.

Not all products in the Co-op catalog qualify to be part of the Co-op Affiliate Program. Example of products that are not qualifying products are coupon offers where we can't track the sales, our free offers, and our trial offers. The good news is that most of our catalog is in our affiliate program. As we add new GroupBuy offers, more products will become available, too.

Should you redeem your affiliate credits for products through the Co-op, the value received is based on the member price of the product. Should you redeem your affiliate credits for cash, you will receive $1 for every 100 affiliate credits accrued. You also need to redeem your affiliate credits within 2 years of receiving them.

How do I redeem my affiliate credits for cash?

Simply sign into your Co-op account at any time and go to the "My SmartPoints Balance" page where we have a separate section at the top for your affiliate information. Click the "Redeem for Cash" link and fill in the information requested.

To receive the cash, you need to know the answer to your security question so when you sign up as an affiliate, please make sure to keep this information safe and secure. A check will be sent which will be processed within 5-7 business days. You also need to redeem your affiliate credits within 2 years of receiving them.

An added benefit of the Co-op affiliate program is payouts can be redeemed when you have only $20 in your balance.

Can I redeem my affiliate credits for product?

The affiliate credits earned under the Co-op Affiliate Program cannot be used for purchasing products on the Co-op site. You can convert them to cash as above.

Where do I get banners and links for the Affiliate Program?

Once you are approved as a Co-op affiliate, you will find a link to our Affiliate Banners and Link page on your "My SmartPoints Balance" Page. We've provided you with banners and links for many of our most popular GroupBuy offers. If you don't see a specific product listed, feel free to use the general Co-op banner or link (the first one in the list).

Is there a Co-op Affiliate Program Agreement?

Yes, there is a Co-op Affiliate Program Agreement. You can review the entire agreement here. The agreement will also be found in the T&Cs stored with your Affiliate Application order.

Why don't I see affiliate credits as one of my friend's who reads my blog told me she made a purchase using my banner?

The Affliate Program works on a First Come First Served basis. Suppose your friend, Mary, visited your site but before that she visited another Co-op affiliate's site of which you were unaware. Which site gets the affiliate credits? The blog or site whose link was clicked first. There's a time limit, however. The blog or site that was clicked first has precedence for 45 days. After that, we reset the timer and if Mary then clicks a link from your blog or site, you'll get the affiliate credits.

Can I get affiliate credits for myself if I use my own banners or links to make a purchase at the Co-op as a member?

Our Affiliate Program does not allow you to receive affiliate credits if you use your own banner or link to make a purchase at the Co-op as a member. You are still eligible to receive SmartPoints® when you make a purchase at the Co-op should that offer include a SmartPoints® promotion.

What do I do if my question is not answered on this page?

You can submit your question at the Contact Us page.

3984 Washington Blvd., Suite 109 | Fremont, CA 94538-4954 | 650-648-0808 | Contact Us
© 2005 - Homeschool Buyers Club, Inc. (DBA Homeschool Buyers Co-op) All rights reserved.
SmartPoints®, and GroupBuy™ are trademarks of the Homeschool Buyers Club, Inc.

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