There are a lot of ways that you can do to make a living online, and there is one method that simply stands out ‒ affiliate marketing.
So, if you are thinking about whether you should be an affiliate marketer, there are still some important things that you need to know before jumping on the bandwagon.
Work on the Timing
A common misconception some people have is that they only have to work when they feel like it. But the most successful entrepreneurs know that in the early stages, they need to work hard all the time.
Affiliate marketing is no different. You have to put in the hard work, automate repetitive tasks, and delegate tasks you know other people can do better than you until you can come up with a system that allows your business to earn money even while you are asleep.
People are smart these days. They know what an affiliate link looks like.
Once you break their trust by promoting something that you do not use in the first place or throwing too many ads during their visit, then they will likely leave and will not come back.
For instance, if you are promoting products and services that are not considered as high value, you will lose credibility in your recommendations, costing you your sales and profits.
That’s why your main priority should be adding value to your website, email list, and visitors. Only share products to your audience if they are truly useful, relevant, and bring value to them.
Have the Right Expectations
Before you jump straight into affiliate marketing, you must first have the right expectations. You cannot dedicate five hours a week and expect that money will start to flow in immediately.
The thing about affiliate marketing is that it is not an easy, get-rich-quick scheme. Yes, anyone could do this part-time at home with very minimal investment, but it does take time and effort to set it up.
You can set a more realistic timeframe, and expect to start making money between 6 months to a year. But in some cases, it takes longer than that.
If you are lucky, you can start making money a little bit sooner, but the chances are slim. So, learn to manage your expectations.
Always Provide Value
Do not turn your website into one huge sales ad. You can even make posts that you have no plan monetizing, simply because you want to give value to your audience.
Pages that are helpful and provide value to your audience will rank well, which can lead to better monetization opportunities and revenue.
So, always think about giving your readers some good, honest advice. If users happen to click an ad or do something on your site, then great. Regardless, always provide value.
Learn More About SEO
You do not have to worry much about the more technical stuff, though. What you need to focus on is creating excellent content for your audience, as well as for search engines. And this is where on-page SEO comes in.
What happens is that you will have to incorporate your target keywords on your content, including your image ALT text, title tags, and meta descriptions.
Learning how you can optimize various site pages for search engines is integral to your affiliate marketing success.
Choose a Product to Promote
In one way or another, you are expected to invest time and money when researching the best products that you want to promote to your audience.
In promoting products, you have two options:
OPTION #1: Find Products You Already Know and Love
You could affiliate yourself with something that you have already used, thoroughly tested, and have a great experience with. You are also fairly confident with the prospect that others will get the same results as you did, as long as they keep doing the work.
You can do an inventory of services, products, and courses that you have prior experience with. Then, you could have a list of a dozen or so more.
Which one of these are you thrilled to promote? You could also cross out the ones that do not exactly fit the bill.
OPTION #2: Find Products via an Affiliate Network
If you do not have direct knowledge or experience with a product in your industry, then you could look for excellent affiliate products on various networks.
But you have to be careful with this approach, though. You still have to do your research on the products and services that you will be promoting to protect the credibility and trust that you have built with your audience.
Examples of popular affiliate networks include CJ Affiliate, ClickBank, Amazon Associates Program, Shareasale, and eBay Partner Network.
Learn How to Promote Affiliate Links
The most successful affiliate marketers are always looking out for new ways on how they can promote their links to maximize their income potential. So, here are some ideas:
Come up with engaging reviews related to the products that you are promoting. Research and study every product before you promote it. That way, you can give your audience more honest information.
Do not pressure them to buy but do not forget to place affiliate links on your content so that there are higher chances that they will click through.
You can also encourage people to join your email list. That way, you can reach them in the future via email anytime you have a new product, review, or special promotion.
Platforms like social media provide you an excellent opportunity to reach your target audience more.
More visual platforms like Instagram, Pinterest, and YouTube are great platforms to promote your affiliate products because you have the opportunity to show your audience how your products work.
The next step that you need to take is to look for a program that will help you promote specific products that are related to your niche.
Typically, affiliate marketing programs are websites that will serve as middlemen between affiliates and merchants.
Here is a checklist that you can consider before you go with a particular program:
- How much commission are you likely going to get from the program?
- Do you want to directly associate yourself with the program, as well as with the brands that are selling through it?
- What kind of support does the program have?
- Who are the merchants that are using this particular affiliate program?
Build Your Platform
From then on, you can start creating a platform that will drive you to success as you learn how to be an affiliate marketer.
Here are some of the most popular ways most affiliate marketers work:
- Create sites like marketplaces.
- Run paid ads.
- Create relevant content where you can insert an affiliate link.
While these are just a couple of options, that is one of the most common directions affiliate marketers go. Hence, it is also important that you know the best website builders that you can leverage to get started.
Publish Top-Notch Content
Whether you are publishing ads or blogging, once you are in this phase, you are already in the home stretch in learning how to be a full-fledged affiliate marketer.
That content can be as simple as producing a blog post. But how you deliver value through your content is up to you.
But what are the types of content that you have to create to stand out and become a trustworthy affiliate marketer?
Even if you are in the right niche and have a flawless website, you still need something to build your audience with. Here are some excellent starting places:
- Product reviews: E-commerce sites are always searching for product reviews that will convert customers, so this is an excellent place to start. If done well, it could give a smooth transition to your marketing efforts, as well as an excellent way to generate income.
- Blog posts: Blogs are another way where you can build your audience’s trust. It could also help you boost your sales over time, as you master how to become an affiliate marketer. Ideally, you should address the most common questions and problems of your target market, and then position yourself as an expert in your industry to make recommendations. You have to be consistent in writing these blog posts as well. You should provide high-quality tips and ideas to your readers.
- Guides: These can be in the form of ebooks, webinars, email series, or any kind of in-depth look at a particular topic. You can also use this as an effective technique to build your audience’s interest in the product or service that you are selling. As long as these guides are helpful, you are one step closer to gaining your audience’s trust.
Set Up Tracking
The more that you know about your website and its visitors, the better that you can create content that is specifically tailored to them.
So, place social media tracking and analytics on your site to gain a better understanding of where your viewers are coming from, what ads are working, and which social media channels give you the farthest audience reach. This will help you save time and money in the long run.
Create Your Ad Account
Building your website is only one option if you want to be an affiliate marketer. Another excellent marketing method that could help drive you to success is ads, especially for affiliate programs that drive high commissions.
But first, you might have to set up an account to create your ads in. Meaning, you will use Facebook ads, Bing ads, and Google ads, depending on your target market.
The type of ad that you want to promote is mostly dependent on the niche you are in. But the important thing that you need to do is to come up with something compelling.
It is the final crucial step that you need to take to become a successful affiliate marketer.
Sell What You Love!
People are more likely to buy based on the recommendations of others, even if they are likely from a stranger. That is precisely why influencer marketing is so powerful.
That said, you should be authentic when it comes to your content, as well as with the reviews of the products you are using.
Seek Like-Minded People
Seek out other people who support your vision, people who are more successful and experienced in their field.
Ask them to share their experiences, and learn everything that you could from them. Doing so will place you on the right track in achieving your goals!
Don’t Give Up Easily
The ones who fail are those who give up. So, do not be discouraged no matter how long it takes, or how many mistakes you make along the way.
Affiliate marketing takes a lot of time, hard work, and effort, and not many people are willing to go through it. Be the one who persisted and went through great lengths to succeed.
Without a doubt, affiliate marketing is an easy, home-based, online business that you can get started with.
It is true, that a dream of yours to make a passive income from your site is not just a silly fantasy. As long as you put in considerable time and effort, and that you are sincere in sharing what you know to your audience, it is possible.
You can turn your passion into an online business that you have dreamed about having.
After you have gained a large following, no doubt that affiliate marketing can be one of the best business models that you can leverage.
The good news is that it is relatively easy to get started. All you need to do is to follow the steps we have mentioned on how to get started.
About the Author:
Rachel Hesser is a web design enthusiast and writes reviews for WebsiteBuilderExperts with a mission to help non-tech business owners to find the best website builders that suit their needs. When not at work, she spends her free time movie binging on Netflix.