Every good entrepreneur should be using affiliate marketing to build their passive income. All you need to get started is a blog or a website and the world is your oyster!
Affiliate marketing is the process of making money online by promoting other people’s products on your blog or website. It is simple and free to do, but it’s usually not a way to make money quickly.
Instead you need to think of affiliate marketing as a long term strategy for gaining an on-going passive income.
4 Basic Steps Of Affiliate Marketing
Affiliate marketing works a bit like this.
- You provide a website or blog which is regularly visited by people who are interested in the topic you are writing about.
- You then go out and find products related to that topic to use, review and promote to your audience.
- People then see that you have recommended a product and then they go and buy that product.
- You then receive a percentage of the product sale from the seller.
Still with me? Phew!
It is free, easy and once you have set it up, you can earn money by promoting those products. After all, that’s the “marketing” side of it.
But, like all good things, it takes time to create a sustainable income.
Essentially you will need to have a website or blog that has a lot of traffic coming to it, mostly from search engines such as Google, Bing or Yahoo.
To get a lot of traffic, you need to provide quality content on your site. To provide quality content you need to know what you are talking about and build a good and trusted reputation.
Affiliate Marketing Networks
Once your site is all good and you have regular traffic, then you can start looking at the different types of affiliate marketing networks you want to work with.
Each network sells different things and you will need to choose products that match the content on your site, or appeal to your audience.
It would be no good choosing TVs and DVD players if your site is about children’s shoes! You would not make any sales at all as the visitors to your site would be interested in shoes or clothing rather than electronics.
So choosing relevant products is essential, as is being able to give an honest review or recommendation about them. It is best if you actually own or have used the product yourself, as your readers will be able to tell the difference between a true and a made up review or promotion.
Then you need to sign up to your affiliate network.
They will give you a code to copy onto your site, together with a banner image, advertisement or text link to place on your page.
Your visitors will then click on this link to go to the website belonging to the seller and when they purchase from them, you will be credited as having sent them via your site.
Consequently, you get a percentage of the total sale cost given to you as a commission!
Percentage amounts vary between networks and different sellers, so shop around when you are deciding which ones to promote.
Top 4 Affiliate Marketing Networks
Here are a few credible affiliate marketing networks to get you started;
Clickbank is one of the most highly ranked affiliate marketers in the United States. It works by providing a connection between the sellers (in this case of digital content) and the affiliate marketers (us). Clickbank claim that they have paid affiliates over US$2 billion in commissions.
Commissions range anywhere from 10% through to 90% of the sale.
One of the most popular courses that teaches you how to earn commissions using Clickbank and other affiliate programs is Google Sniper.
Commission Junction has over 1000 different advertisers selling many different products. Once you have signed on as a member, you get to choose the products you wish to advertise on your site.
CJ have branded advertisers like Kmart and Starbucks, however each advertiser has the right to accept or reject you as a marketer. The choice is theirs, rather than yours.
Commissions vary and can be paid as a fixed fee per lead, fixed fee per sale or as a percentage of the sale price.
ShareASale offer a wide range of products to advertise on your website. Unlike many other marketing companies, you are able to see some of the product categories before you join up to the program.
As well as Pay-Per-Sale and Pay-Per-Lead, they also have an area on Green Products, where you can promote products related to environmental sources.
Commissions vary and each advertiser has the right to accept or reject you as a marketer.
Amazon Associates allows you to join up, and then promote products from Amazon on your site. You then receive a commission on any of those products your visitors buy, when they link through from your site.
You will also receive a percentage of any other products they buy during that same visit.
Due to the sheer size of Amazon’s product range, nearly everything can be sold for commission and Amazon even provide storefronts to help you sell items.
However, commission percentages paid for beginners start at just 4%. Only the top sellers can earn up to 25% commission of the sale price.
Remember that affiliate marketing is like running a business. You need to have a plan in place and choose products carefully.
Create valuable content that visitors will find interesting to read. Choose the products that you promote wisely and truly believe they provide value, rather than just eyeing the commission.