SFI News

SFI's Official News Blog

SFI now in its 18th year!

We are now officially in our 18th year!  From but a small acorn 18 years ago, SFI has grown into a tall and mighty oak tree, with strong and deep roots.  But you ain’t seen nothin’ yet…because we planted an entire FOREST…and it’s spreading across every country in the world.

SFI President & Founder Gery Carson remembers the day SFI was born:

Gery2009_125w“As an entrepreneur, there have been very few holidays where I haven’t worked at least a few hours, and this day in 1998 was no different.  I went into my home office that morning planning to spend a few casual hours–on nothing in particular.  It was a holiday after all and no one else on my staff at the time was working. So it was just going to be a relaxing day where I’d let my mind have a break from the typical daily grind.

I remember at the time that affiliate programs were becoming a big deal, thanks to the Internet, which made it very easy to track sales using affiliate links.  Numerous big-name companies were now employing affiliate programs as a part of their marketing strategy.  And I thought…why not us, too!  

I remember being particularly impressed with Amazon.com’s affiliate program.  The word was, they had 60,000 affiliates.  60,000!  At the time, that number seemed enormous to me, an impossible number.  But I couldn’t have been more wrong of course because, in just a couple years, we would be experiencing days where we’d sign up over 60,000 affiliates in a single day!  

But on this morning, I was simply sketching out a few basics on how our affiliate program would work.  At the time, we were publishing our magazine, Six Figure Income, which featured exclusive interviews with home-based entrepreneurs who were earning at least $100,000 annually from their business.  This magazine was essentially our one and only product.  By the way, it’s from the magazine’s name that the SFI Marketing Group name came to be (a few years later we changed the initials to stand for Strong Future International to better align with our vision for the program).


Six Figure Income magazine’s premier issue was the March/April 1998 issue.  Prior to this, and stretching all the way back to 1986, we had published other newsletters and magazines devoted primarily to mail order entrepreneurs, including Mail Dealer Newsletter, Mail Profits Magazine, and Profits Magazine.  During those years, marketing by mail was the “Internet” for many entrepreneurs.  All the marketing we do today on the Web; in those years, at least for entrepreneurs like myself, it was all mail based (with a little bit of help from phone, fax, and conference calls).

Six Figure Income magazine was published just four times per year, and a one-year subscription was $49, so we had a healthy margin…enough margin to pay a handsome commission to anyone who wished to be an affiliate of ours and sell subscriptions.

Within days of deciding to create our affiliate program, I had published information on how to sign up online (supplemented, if I recall correctly, with a small direct mail campaign ironically).  To my pleasant surprise, sign-ups starting coming in almost immediately.  Not a lot, maybe a dozen or two a week, but that number rapidly accelerated.  Soon it was hundreds of sign-ups a day, then thousands, then tens of thousands!

Sashen_Strayer_WallenDriving this, now, hyper-growth was our decision to expand the program and compensation plan–many of the details of which were hammered out during a weekend at SFI affiliate Steven Sashen’s Boulder, Colorado, home with affiliates Gump Wallen and the late, great Richard Strayer (we miss you, Rich!).  By January 2001, we had exceeded one MILLION affiliates.  With our most recently assigned ID number 16483269, over 15 million others have joined SFI since.

So like many great accomplishments, it all started with a simple idea, a simple inspiration.  Today, SFI is the online home for millions of entrepreneurs from every country in the world.  Indeed, SFI today is very possibly the largest and most successful affiliate program in the world.  Aim high.  Dream big.”

Black Friday SUPER SALE!

screenshot_882Don’t miss our Black Friday SUPER SALE at Pricebenders!  Every auction at Pricebenders will be capped at just 99¢!  That’s right!  No matter how high the bidding goes, you’ll pay no more than 99¢ at checkout!

For the complete line-up of available auctions, go to:


And don’t forget that you can set an email and/or text alert for any auctions you want to be reminded of when they start from the UPCOMING auctions tab!

For a Pricebenders guide and tips for winning, go HERE.

Uber-Picks NCAA basketball is here!

We’re excited today to announce that Uber-Picks is now ready for NCAA Men’s Basketball fans!

If you’re a college basketball fan, you’ll love playing Uber-Picks!  By playing Uber-Picks alongside watching basketball, you’ll add even more excitement and enjoyment to being a college basketball fan!

The objective of Uber-Picks is to tally the highest score possible by correctly picking the winning teams, but that’s only the start.  You’ll maximize your score by strategically assigning “Confidence Points” to each of your picks (the more confident you are of a pick, the more points you should assign).

For each game you pick correctly, you’ll earn the number of points you assigned to that game.  Uber-Picks also features “Sidekicks”–which you can use to boost your score even further and add even more fun to playing.

Win shares of the big weekly Zackpots by posting one of the 50 highest scores.  Also earn cool badges, MRP (Member Rewards Points), and compete for the top spots on the Uber-Picks Leaderboards!


  • Simple and fun to play!
  • Adds a new and exciting layer of challenge and enjoyment when following your favorite sports (makes every game matter)!
  • No purchase necessary to win and your first Uber-Picks contest is free to play each month!
  • Eight different major sports categories!
  • Win shares of the big weekly Zackpots!
  • Earn up to 15 badges!
  • Compete for the top spots on the Uber-Picks Leaderboards!
  • Every TCredit used playing Uber-Picks earns you 5 MRP (Member Rewards Points)!
  • Earn 1 Action VP for each non-free entry (250 max. AVP from EZ games/per month)!
  • Through the new W3 program, challenge friends to play Uber-Picks and win hundreds of FREE Member Rewards Points, FREE TCredits via Zackpot Matches, bonus entries in the Daily Crown, and MORE!  Every entry earns you a new Friend Challenge link to share with friends and build your base of PRMs!
  • Create and be the commissioner of your own league for any Uber-Picks sports category, complete with free league website, automatic tracking, awards, and more.

>>> Start playing Uber-Picks NCAAMB now HERE <<<

NOTE!  Before you start playing, make sure to first
read our Uber-Picks TIPS article HERE.

 Uber-Picks is now available–when in season–for:

  • FIFA-Europe
  • FIFA-North America
  • NBA (National Basketball Association)
  • Cricket
  • MLB (Major League Baseball)
  • NCAA Football (American college football)
  • NFL (American professional football)
  • NCAA Basketball (American college men’s basketball)


  1. You can easily spot NCAA basketball fans, especially in areas that have college basketball teams, by their hats, shirts, jackets, bumper stickers, etc. When you encounter such persons, let them know about NCAA basketball Uber-Picks; it’s a great way to get new PRMs!  And remember, thanks to the new W3 system, every person THEY tell about Uber-Picks can also become your PRM with all the lifetime earning opportunities that come with it!
  2. In our Marketing Center, you’ll find different-sized banners for promoting NCAA basketball Uber-Picks (and 42 total banners for promoting ALL Uber-Picks sports games). Check ’em out HERE.  Add these banners to your own blog or website to generate new PRMs.  Or, aim higher and contact the owners of various sports blogs and websites.  Buy space for a banner or make a mutually-beneficial barter proposal–such as banner space in exchange for $1.00 per PRM generated.

Forum Discussion

DISCUSS IT!  Log in at the SFI Affiliate Center, then head over to the FORUM–to the SFI NEWS DISCUSSIONS section–to discuss this announcement with your fellow SFI’ers.

ECAs: Get instant payments for your orders

LocalPayLogo2If you haven’t had a chance to check out TripleClicks’ LocalPay program for ECAs, you owe it to your business to take a moment and do so NOW. In addition to bypassing international transaction “roadblocks” by conducting your transactions locally–in your own currency–with TripleClicks Members in your region, you can also get paid immediately–on the front-end–for orders you’ve fulfilled! What’s more, you can offer local pick up for your customers, eliminating bothersome shipping charges.

If you or your referred ECAs are still on the fence about applying for a LocalPay license, consider this as well: The world is going more global all the time. Thousands of current and future companies will need local fulfillment/payment/delivery services, too. By being a member of our growing network and establishing a track record now, you can position yourself to take on other future clients and create an even larger order fulfillment enterprise for yourself.

Applying for a LocalPay license via your ECA Center is quick and easy. Just scroll down to the LocalPay License(s) section, and select the link. You can also visit these three TC pages for more information:




Important new SFI gateway

screenshot_833With the big Signing Bonus announcement, it’s of course vital that this exciting new bonus is prominently promoted to all prospective affiliates.

To accommodate this, we are unveiling today an important, new, completely-redesigned SFI gateway:

(you’ll replace 21505 with your own SFI ID when advertising of course)

Key new features:

  • Fresh, modern look
  • Retooled ad copy to highlight the biggest and best reasons for becoming an SFI affiliate
  • Mobile-friendly (page adjusts for any screen size)
  • New, simpler built-in registration form (requires only name, email, country, and password to get started)
  • The old, clunky Captcha has been replaced with a slick, fast, and new security check that helps ensure no autobot can register an account
  • An income disclaimer and no-spam policy have been added (required by many ISPs, search engines, and advertising programs)

IMPORTANT NOTE:  Because it was not feasible to quickly alter every existing SFI gateway to include a promotion of the new Signing Bonus, we have configured our servers to redirect the following four SFI gateways to the new one:

  • /real
  • /real2
  • /first
  • “invite” gateway

So, if you’re currently promoting any of the above four gateways, you’re all set; your prospects will be now seeing the new gateway and be informed of the new Signing Bonus!

Note:  If you’re using the JMT (“Join My Team”) gateway, your prospects will continue to be directed to the JMT gateway.  However, they’ll still learn about the new Signing Bonus because we’ve added a banner about it near the top of the page.


Q: I’m already using the original /free gateway in my advertising.  What will happen now?
Those responding to your advertising will now see the NEW gateway design instead.

Q: I understand that other SFI gateways like the “/real” and “/first” gateways now redirect to the new gateway, but will you be reintroducing them later and remove the redirect?
We shall see.  We think the new gateway is far and away the best gateway of the group and will provide the best results, so there may not be a good reason to reintroduce the others again–at least not in the near future.  After we have at least a couple months of testing the new gateway, we’ll be able to better determine if /real, /first, etc. will get new life as separate gateways.  Stay tuned.

Q: The registration form doesn’t collect as much information as it did previously (e.g. city of residence).  Is that a good thing?
Less information asked for upfront will actually increase sign-ups.  And, don’t worry, we’re still going to be collecting city, etc, plus their primary language, too, but we’ll be doing it AFTER they sign up, at the Affiliate Center using a friendly pop-up message.  The idea is to make it as quick and easy as possible to sign up. That’s good for us and it’s good for you. We can collect other important information just a bit later.

Q: How do I know that when I refer someone to the new gateway that I will get credited as their sponsor?
You can confirm that you’ll be properly credited by checking the SFI ID number located at the bottom of the gateway under the copyright notice.  Your SFI ID number will appear there automatically if you’re using your SFI ID in the link you’re advertising.  And if it’s displayed on the gateway, you’ll be the sponsor!

Q: I noticed that if the reader clicks on the “Read more testimonials” button that the reader is taken to a new window.  Won’t I lose the prospect if that happens?
No. First of all, we’ll automatically transfer your SFI ID to the testimonials gateway when it’s opened by your prospect–so if they end up deciding to register directly from the testimonials gateway, you’ll be credited as the sponsor just the same.  Secondly, we purposely open the testimonials gateway in a new, separate window.  By doing this, the standard gateway remains for your prospect to come back to if they wish to.

Q: Does the new gateway do anything to help ensure that good email addresses are collected?
Yes, as always, any email address that is not properly formatted (e.g. doesn’t have an “@” sign in it) will be rejected.  But the new gateway goes further.  Upon entering an email address, the following alert (in red) appears:

IMPORTANT: A valid e-mail address must be provided to receive commissions and be eligible for the Signing Bonus.  

Please confirm that <emailaddress> is your correct email address.

The email address must then be confirmed to proceed with the sign-up.

Q: Why was the Income Disclaimer and No-Spam statement added to the bottom of this gateway?
This text is actually required by many ISPs, search engines, and advertising programs.  If we don’t provide this, you may not be allowed to advertise at certain places on the web–or your advertising may be automatically blocked from being viewed or otherwise “obfuscated.”

Q: But won’t the Income Disclaimer turn off prospects?
Actually, we believe just the opposite is true.  That is, we think most prospects will appreciate us being very open and honest with them.  Perhaps it will “turn off” people who are looking for a “pie in the sky” program that promises wealth without work.  The fact is, there’s no such thing, and we refuse to insult people’s intelligence by ever suggesting that success is possible without work and effort.  Frankly, we’d prefer that such persons pass on SFI (at least until they’ve figured out that there’s no such thing as a free lunch).

Q: What about the standalone registration page (/register)?
If you’re currently advertising the link to the standalone registration page, we’ve got some good news for you there, too.  That is, it’s been completely overhauled, made mobile-friendly, etc., and now sports a promotional banner for the Signing Bonus, too!  We also added links to the Testimonials Gateway and the new gateway, so the /register page is now equipped to work as a great back-end to, for example, your personal blog posts about SFI.

Q: The signing bonus of up to $100 is promoted near the top of the new gateway.  Where can I get the details on the signing bonus?
Review our announcement HERE.

Forum Discussion

DISCUSS IT!  Log in at the SFI Affiliate Center, then head over to the FORUM–to the SFI NEWS DISCUSSIONS section–to discuss this announcement with your fellow SFI’ers.


Announcing….$20, $40, and $100 Signing Bonuses!

100_dollar_winner-01Effective immediately, we’ve added a very exciting new incentive for all new SFI affiliates: SIGNING BONUSES!

What’s a Signing Bonus (SB)?  Like the name suggests, it’s a bonus you now qualify for when you sign up with SFI.

All new affiliates will now immediately be eligible to earn $20 just for joining SFI!

The SB amount increases to $40 for those who qualify for Fast-Track Silver.  And for those who qualify for Fast-Track GOLD, the SB increases to $100!

Signing Bonuses will be paid out with regular commissions–paid as a percentage (3%) of your regular commission earnings for a maximum of 18 months.

Example: Your regular commissions for the month are $400.  Hence, $12 (3% of $400) of your SB would be added, for a total earnings of $412.  Each month, you’ll receive a portion of your total SB until it is fully* paid.

*Any remaining SB balance after 18 months is forfeited

Signing Bonuses will be automatically awarded to all new affiliates joining SFI as of TODAY (November 19, 2015).

For those who joined SFI prior to today (November 19th), you will also receive the $20 SB into your account if you’ve not yet qualified as an EA (Executive Affiliate).

Yes, we just deposited over $17,000,000 (17 million dollars) into the SB accounts of thousands of SFI affiliate worldwide–many of whom might be in YOUR downline and now have an extra incentive to get active!

And for every affiliate who joined SFI prior to today (before November 19, 2015), don’t worry, we haven’t forgot about you!  We will also be providing you with an opportunity to earn a SB of up to $100, too!  Be watching for a future announcement with these details.

IMPORTANT NOTE: Because it is redundant of the current $10 Bronze Bonus, we are discontinuing the Bronze Bonus, effective immediately.  Note that if you qualified for the Bronze Bonus in October 2015 (or in a previous month but have not yet taken payment), you will still receive the Bronze Bonus.


Q: How will prospects know about the SB?
We’ve added a prominent SB promotion to SFI gateways.

Q: Why would qualifying for a SB cause someone to get active?
SBs are only paid out when regular commissions are earned and paid.  Therefore, if those qualifying for a SB want to receive payment of their SB, they must get to work building a business and earning commissions.

Q: How can I personally promote the new SB?
We’ve created some great new banners–now available in the Marketing Center–for you to promote it.  You can also use the text from the banners in your text ads, etc.  And, of course, you’re encouraged to reference the new SBs in all of your various interactions with prospects and your newest affiliates.

Q: How will new affiliates know they’ve got a SB coming to them and/or that they can increase the amount of the bonus?

  • We’ve added references to the SB in key emails that new affiliates receive in their first ten days.  At a later date, reminder emails will also automatically be sent out so affiliates do not forget about the money they have coming to them.
  • We’ve added it to the My Earnings panel of the Scoreboard tab.
  • Your SB balance, if any, is now displayed in the top, right corner of the Affiliate Center header.
  • Our Fast-Track central info page now prominently lists the $40 and $100 SBs as one of the benefits of becoming a Fast-Track member (as do the Fast-Track alerts on the Alerts tab).

Q: What about someone who joined SFI in the last 10 days and is still Fast-Track-eligible?
For anyone who joined SFI prior to today (Nov. 19) and is still Fast-Track-eligible, we are extending their Fast-Track eligibility for ten more days.  So…even if they only had one day remaining, they now have a full ten days to qualify as silver and increase their SB to $40.  Or, by qualifying as gold (including upgrading from silver to gold), they can boost their SB all the way up to $100!

Q: How does the new SB program affect the TCredits Welcomes and Cash Welcomes that were introduced a few months ago?
These programs have been paused. If you were participating in either of these programs, It’s been turned off for you.  Should we decide later to resume these programs, you’ll be alerted so that you can turn it back on if you want (it will NOT resume without you manually turning it back on).

Q: Why shut down the TCredits Welcomes and Cash Welcomes?
They are redundant and would add too much confusion for new people signing up with SFI.  And, of course, the new SB is a MUCH bigger reward.  Having a separate Cash Welcome (or TCredits Welcome) would only risk overwhelming new affiliates. Note: If you still wish to give your new affiliates TCredits, you can of course still do this, whenever you want, using the TCredits Transfer tool on your Genealogy.

Q: Why don’t ALL existing affiliates automatically qualify for the $20 SB?
The SB program was created to be an incentive to get active with SFI.  Many existing affiliates are already active.  That said, EVERY existing affiliate prior to today (November 19, 2015), who did not receive the immediate $20 SB, is going to have the opportunity to qualify for up to a $100 SB (watch for the upcoming announcement with details).

Q: Isn’t it unfair that all existing affiliates don’t get the $20 SB.  Shouldn’t SFI give everyone $20?
If the new SB program is successful, even to a small degree, you’ll earn way, way, way more than $20 in additional regular commissions in the coming months.  Why?  Because signing up new affiliates will be much easier…and getting them active will be much easier.  All of this will almost certainly lead to more activity, more sales, a larger TripleClicks Executive Pool, and increased commissions for all.  Don’t focus on a nominal, one-time bonus!  Focus on the big picture!

Q: What about all the affiliates in my downline who have already received, or will receive, the $20 SB?  Should I be contacting them about it?
Throughout November and December, we’ll be aggressively promoting the SBs available to ALL affiliates via newsletters, special email blasts, etc.  However, there’s definitely potential value in adding your personal message(s).  For example, you may have affiliates in your group that don’t visit the Affiliate Center regularly and/or that don’t read our announcements and newsletters.  An email coming from YOU, might very well get through and make all the difference!  This is such a special event, in fact, you may want to pull out all the stops and even start making some phone calls, lining up get-togethers, etc.

Q: Is there any way to specifically target those in my downline who have received a SB?
Yes!  We are installing a new “SB Balance” filter in the Genealogy.  You’ll be able to select those who have received a SB and/or have a remaining SB balance (and even be able to select by amount) so that you can send out just the right group messages, etc.  This new filter should be available within a few days.

Forum Discussion

DISCUSS IT!  Log in at the SFI Affiliate Center, then head over to the FORUM–to the SFI NEWS DISCUSSIONS section–to discuss this announcement with your fellow SFI’ers.



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