So, there you have a comprehensive answer to the question – what is affiliate marketing? It can benefit a wide range of businesses and delivers a strong return on investment. The setup requires some initial work to define program terms and create promotional content for affiliates to use. However, once this is completed, affiliate marketing can be a relatively passive source of revenue.
Shopify has three different account types as well as standalone third-party products like themes and apps. Commissions are paid for sales of any of these products, including users who sign up for a 14-day free trial and then convert to a paid account. Shopify also has a wide range of blog posts, webinars, and video tutorials that can be linked to with the standard commission paid on any sales that are generated.
Affiliate marketing allows you to make money online, even if you don’t have blog, website, or any products of your own. Following a few simple steps can get you up and running within hours and earning your first commissions right away. Affiliate marketing really is one of the fastest and easiest ways to make money online and should be a part of every online business owner's portfolio.
Cost per action/sale methods require that referred visitors do more than visit the advertiser's website before the affiliate receives a commission. The advertiser must convert that visitor first. It is in the best interest of the affiliate to send the most closely targeted traffic to the advertiser as possible to increase the chance of a conversion. The risk and loss are shared between the affiliate and the advertiser.
Social media marketers often say sponsored social messages (the ones you pay for) are more effective than many of the other marketing tactics. Paid social ads increase your reach and since social media platforms have a lot of information about their users demographics and behaviour, these can be leveraged to target your desired audience. If you want to put your money where your mouth is, your best bet is through the follow platforms.
The key things you want to look for are ease-of-use (especially if you don’t know how to run a web server), good customer service (you’ll need it at some point), and simple WordPress installation. You should also consider price. When you set up your first affiliate marketing website, you don’t need some crazy hosting plan. You just need something basic and cheap until you start making some money, then you can upgrade if needed.
Keyword Planner gives a good impression about search volume for each keyword on Google’ search engine including the number of clicks it receives plus its average cost per click. Bing Keyword Tool which is very similar to Google’s tool but all keywords here are related to Bing. Long Tail Pro is one of the best paid keyword research tools available. It’s useful for finding high volume keywords.
Two-tier programs exist in the minority of affiliate programs; most are simply one-tier. Referral programs beyond two-tier resemble multi-level marketing (MLM) or network marketing but are different: Multi-level marketing (MLM) or network marketing associations tend to have more complex commission requirements/qualifications than standard affiliate programs.
My conversion rate went from 2.5% to 8% just by including Facebook polls where SiteGround was rated #1 (here’s last year’s poll) plus Twitter screenshots and Facebook conversations. Whether it’s Amazon reviews or social proof, you NEED to include outside opinions. You can also use WP Rich Snippets to allow people to leave a review about the product/service on your site and get those review stars in Google (you will want to use their front end submit add-on).
Affiliate marketing overlaps with other Internet marketing methods to some degree, because affiliates often use regular advertising methods. Those methods include organic search engine optimization (SEO), paid search engine marketing (PPC – Pay Per Click), e-mail marketing, content marketing, and (in some sense) display advertising. On the other hand, affiliates sometimes use less orthodox techniques, such as publishing reviews of products or services offered by a partner.
CJ Affiliate, which formerly known as Commission Junction, is an online advertising company operating in the affiliate marketing industry. This company is a real deal for affiliates who want to build a serious business online. They have big branded clients including American Airlines, Forever 21, Marc Jacobs, Santa Barbara, Barnes & Noble, and much, much more.
You can also search within an affiliate network to choose the products you want to promote. Acting as an intermediary between a merchant and the affiliate, an affiliate network is like a marketplace holding a large database of affiliate opportunities. Amazon’s Amazon Associates is by far the biggest network. Simply join, choose which products to advertise and generate as many custom affiliate links to Amazon products. Once someone purchases on the Amazon site through your link, you earn commission. If you’re interested in the Amazon route, head to this post from Cloudliving to find out more.
Authority websites take years to develop so if you choose this model make sure you have other income streams coming in while you build it out. The monetization options for authority sites are only limited by your imagination. Advertising, straight affiliate marketing, 2nd-tier models, paid reviews, JV’s, are just a few examples of how to make income from authority sites.
JVZoo works exclusively with digital products, primarily e-commerce, online courses, and internet marketing offers. Because there are no limits placed on the number of links, buy buttons, or calls to action on a website, JVZoo can sometimes be somewhat low quality both in terms of offers as well as products. Nonetheless, it has proven itself to be a fierce competitor to companies like ClickBank.
Flexoffers is another huge affiliate marketing network. They pay you (the affiliate) a lot faster than others in the industry. It has more than 10 years of experience in the field. While they do not offer anything that is neither groundbreaking nor revolutionary, they do provide a solid array of tools and features that will surely aid you in your campaigns. In addition to the fast payouts, Flexoffers lets you choose from thousands of affiliate programs to promote, offers various content delivery formats, and more.
List three to five types of products you would like to market. Depending upon the business model you chose, you may decide to market products you enjoy or you may decide to market only products that have the most profit potential for your affiliate business. Limit yourself to just a few products in the beginning so that you don't become overwhelmed.
SkimLinks works very similarly to VigLinks in that it is designed for bloggers who don’t want to do a lot of hands-on work to participate in an affiliate program. SkimLinks also works much like VigLinks in that it uses a plugin or script to create dynamic links in your content to send visitors to higher paying offers from merchants. SkimLinks claims to work with over 24,000 merchants/advertisers.
MY FAVORITE PRO: The exclusive Facebook group for students of Making Sense of Affiliate Marketing. Okay, you know like EVERY online course includes an “exclusive Facebook group” as a “bonus” for buying the course, right? And then, often, you get into this Facebook group and see that the admin has posted a couple of times, but no one engaged with the posts, and no one really participates in the group at all. It’s useless, just a vanity bonus.Well, I’m happy to say the Making Sense of Affiliate Marketing Facebook group is NOT like that! It is my FAVORITE Facebook group, and here’s why:
When you’re starting an affiliate business, don’t make things more complicated than it has to be. You simply need to promote your website and get it seen by as many people as possible. You can promote your websites through a number of ways. Social media promotion is one of the most common. Many affiliate marketers use search engine optimization techniques to generate page views and sales. For this, useful, rich content is essential. The content should include good reviews of the products you are promoting. You can use video sites like YouTube to publish video reviews and then share those videos through your website.
The course helped me identify TWO areas I was doing wrong in affiliate marketing, which could have gotten me fined by the FTC or booted out of one of my favorite affiliate programs. The huge reason I took this course was actually to figure out some of the legal considerations for affiliate marketing. Michelle is NOT a lawyer, but she researched this area heavily and offers some practical tips in plain language that helped me understand I was doing two things wrong that I needed to fix to cover my tail legally. I feel the course was worth this alone because you get a lot of information out there when you just Google it.
The most successful affiliate marketers focus on niches that feature desperate buyers. These buyers have a pressing problem they urgently need to solve. As a result, they’re more likely to impulse buy a product that promises results, and they’re less sensitive to cost. Following this logic, an e-book to help the unemployed find work within 30 days is a more viable affiliate product than an e-book to help people improve their golf swing.
This site might seem authoritative, but it doesn’t really cater to the visitor. As you can see the site contains a ton of ads, and doesn’t do much to provide a good reading experience. The content is long, but it’s also very hard to read. You could easily create a site that reviews this product and provides a better reading experience and higher-quality review.
One last word of advice on products; don’t recommend something you don’t believe in just to get a click. Find something that you are happy to promote and that your target audience will benefit from. That’s not to say that you should be using each product you recommend. You should just trust that the product is worth your visitors hard earned cash. It won’t serve you well to willingly recommend anything that may affect your reputation among your site visitors. If a product doesn’t rate well, it’s advantageous all round to offer alternatives.