How to Start Affiliate Marketing – Starting affiliate marketing is a great business idea for smart entrepreneurs. As an internet marketer, affiliate marketing has not just become one of my best sources of income but has also been one of the most powerful life-changing career choices I have ever made.
In this age of entrepreneurship, people wake up each day with great business ideas, such include, starting a blog, creating an online store, eCommerce, drop shipping, as well, affiliate marketing. These are great business ideas, and of course the most lucrative business ideas for smart entrepreneurs like you.
Here, I am going to provide you with all the necessary information you need to know about Affiliate Marketing, What is Affiliate Marketing, How to Start Affiliate Marketing, Why you should Start Affiliate Marketing, Things to Consider Before Joining Affiliate Programs, Tips to Promoting Affiliate Products, and How to Get Paid as an Affiliate Marketer.
If you are already an affiliate marketer, then this article will show you how to grow your business, earn a passive income, and become a succesful affiliate marketer.
Before we proceed to the next step, how to start affiliate marketing, let me quickly bring to your understanding of what affiliate marketing is in just a few words.
What is Affiliate Marketing?
Affiliate marketing is a form of internet marketing where an affiliate is paid a commission to promote the products and services of a merchant.
In affiliate marketing, you are an affiliate if you promote people or companies ‘products to earn a commission. You are a merchant if you have products that affiliates can promote to earn a commission. The people who buy the products are customers.
To better understand affiliate marketing, here’s the 5 step process to follow:
- You search for products/services to promote
- Know the “product name” affiliate program.
- Sign up for their affiliate program
- You get a special link that allows the merchant to track the people who clicked your link
- If they buy the product, you get a commission.
Now, the question is, how can you really start affiliate marketing?
How to Start Affiliate Marketing in 3 Basic Steps (Beginners Guide)
In order to get you started down the right path, here, we focus on three critical steps to launch your own profitable affiliate marketing business easy and fast.
1. Choose a Niche.
Choosing a niche for your affiliate marketing business is a great first step. A niche is simply an area of interest. What products do you like to promote?
You do not have to mix different products from different niches to a website or an online store. If you want to be selling phones, focus on that, do not add shoes or cosmetic products. Well, there is no rule in selecting a niche, but we are just trying to be moderate.
RECOMMENDED READING: How to Start an Online Store in 8 Simple Steps (Beginners Guide)
Having a niche, guarantees you to position yourself as an expert and talk to a particular set of audience. The niche you select must be something you are genuinely interested in. A range of products that is not focused will be difficult to market.
Some niche example includes Technology, Fashion, Business, Sports, Health, etc. Choose your niche wisely.
2. Build a Blog around the Niche.
When you select a niche, the next you have to do is build a blog around the niche. So good, you can promote affiliate products and services without having a blog. However, if you want long term success, having a blog will give you an indispensable advantage.
A blog gives you the freedom to connect with your readers, give them helpful information about your offer, and build a subscriber base until they trust you enough to follow your recommendations.
You can promote countless products on your blog, even sell your own products/services. Your blog serves as your primary marketing tool, helping you generate more revenue through banner ads and affiliate links.
RECOMMENDED READING: How to Start a Blog in 9 Simple Steps (Beginners Guide)
3. Join Affiliate Programs.
This is the most important part of starting affiliate marketing.
Once you’ve decided on your niche, you will want to find out what is out there to promote in terms of programs and products.
Here’s the point, you can pick just about any product you can buy online, and there will be an affiliate program that will pay you the rate of a referrer to refer a sale. However, just because you can promote anything, does not mean you should.
The most important thing to consider when selecting a product for the market is “is it relevant to the public?” To avoid promoting unwanted products to your subscribers and losing their trust, be sure to select only effective products. This, you will know by the number of reviews each product gets.
There are many ways you can join affiliate programs, either by, using a product’s in-house affiliate program or join using an affiliate network or marketplace such as Amazon, ShareASale, Commission Junction, ImpactRadius, Clickbank, Amazon Associates, Rakuten, Alibaba, Aliexpress, etc.
Things to consider while choosing affiliate programs.
1. Reputation of network/products.
Very important. Choosing an affiliate program is not something you should rush to do, you need to check out the reputation of the affiliate network/program as well as their products before you join them.
Most of the independent affiliate networks boost of high commissions, but, at the end of the day, they fail to pay you as they promised. And since, most of them have nothing to worry about or lose, they don’t really mind a few bad reviews. So, it’s important you get to understand them very well before you make a step.
2. Payment method.
Imagine a situation where you promote a product and people to get to see and buy them, and you earned over a thousand dollars, but you can’t get paid, because there is no acceptable payment method in your country. So heartbreaking.
Before you try to promote any affiliate program, ensure to check the payment method supported by the affiliate network or program. If there is no acceptable payment method in your country, you can talk to the affiliate manager or use the contact form and see if they can work you through it.
3. Minimum payout or threshold.
This is one reason, most newbie affiliate marketers give up so easily. Unlike traditional ad networks, most affiliate programs pay you when you reach a minimum threshold of $50. If you are under that threshold, you can’t get paid.
Most affiliate marketers give up because they can’t reach the threshold to start receiving their payment. They may be working so hard to get here, but still find it hard to get there, they feel like they have been cheated as they won’t get paid for the promotion they have done.
The point here is that you should always check the payout of any affiliate programs you choose to join, to avoid crying over been cheated or not getting paid as you’ve exhausted your time and resources. However, you can still make it to the threshold, if you keep up the good work and remain patient.
Here are a few of the reputable affiliate programs you can join
If you have a website related to online marketing, blogs or businesses, there are fortunately many really strong affiliate programs for different services.
I wanted to share some of my favorites so you could get an idea of what an affiliate program entails and start having an idea of what might work on your site.
- Bluehost – Bluehost is a web hosting company. The most affordable and reliable blog hosting provider, used with several websites over the years. The Bluehost affiliate program is one of the most lucrative and highest paying affiliate programs available.
RECOMMENDED READING: How to Start a Blog in 9 Simple Steps (Beginners Guide)
- AliDropship – AliDropship is an eCommerce plugin designed to simplify the drop shipping process. It can be integrated with WordPress and WooCommerce, so, you can easily add a drop shipping item to your current website or eCommerce store. The AliDropship affiliate program is completely free and anyone can sign up. Once registered, you can start earning high commissions with minimal effort!
RECOMMENDED READING: How to Start Dropshipping Business in 4 Simple Steps (Beginners Guide).
- BeRush – This is the affiliate program for the SEO research tool SEMrush. I use this religiously on my blog, and their affiliate program gives you all the resources you need and pays a recurring fee of 40%! Good luck finding anything that compares with that.
RECOMMENDED: Master SEO with SEMRush
- Jumia – Jumia, Nigeria’s No.1 online shopping platform with the largest collection of fashions, electronics, smartphones, groceries, computers, books and many more. Their affiliate program is excellent, easy to start and fast to make money.
How to promote affiliate products.
Becoming a successful affiliate marketer is not as easy as signing up for an affiliate program. It requires a well-thought, effective strategies, especially, when it has to do with promoting affiliate products.
Affiliate marketing is rewarding to anyone who is in the business provided they know what to do, but for those who are new to the business, it would seem a really hard-to-break.
However, you don’t have to worry. My mission here is to help you out with the best I know. So, if you are planning to embark on affiliate marketing, then, I am so delighted to share with you these helpful tips and techniques to assist you in promoting affiliate products online.
Blogging is nothing more than a personal opinion of the author on any subject. There are several blog sites that offer free hosting of opinions and which have the readability of millions of readers. If you are a creative writer, writing an attractive blog about a product is a rewarding job.
RECOMMENDED READING: How to Start a Blog in 9 Simple Steps (Beginners Guide)
You can attract readers with constant and original content, build their trust, and then post a product on your blog that will really be beneficial to the reader and earn a commission if readers use your blog as a link to purchase the product.
When writing content, you must be able to understand the dynamics of the product. Content must be presented in such a way that a layperson can understand and buy the product.
2. Search engine optimization (SEO).
SEO is a marketing discipline focused on increasing the visibility of the results of organic search engines. This covers the technical and creative elements needed to improve rankings, drive traffic and increase awareness in search engines.
Each search engine gives a result based on certain keywords or key phrases of the search query typed in the box, and the most relevant result arrives at the top. You are to write content with a rich mix of keywords and phrases that will improve the chances of your site being at the top of the suggested results.
Therefore, you need all the help you can get to develop and implement an SEO campaign. The help usually comes in the form of an SEO tool that:
- Helps you determine the best-targeted keywords to optimize for each of your pages
- Elaborates content based on the keyword you choose
- Acquires backlinks for your content through competitors’ research.
All these things can be done effectively using SEMrush.
3. Social media marketing.
As more and more businesses turn to social media to drive sales, the need for social media marketers has never been greater. Now, companies use social networks, like Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, LinkedIn, Pinterest, and others to connect with current and potential clients.
Marketing has always been about connecting with your audience in the right place at the right time. Today, this means that you have to meet them where they already spend their time: on social media.
You can also share a post on social media about how to start a blog and make money blogging to attract more views and take advantage of them for product advertising.
In addition, most social networks have their own data analytics tools that make it easy to create and promote social media marketing campaigns. Due to the continuous dissemination of social media discussions, there would be an immediate notifiable product and it would also be shared on other platforms, which would help to publicize the product, there you can generate leads and drive sales.
4. Email marketing.
Offer your visitors a chance to become one of your email subscribers. This is a marketing strategy, where an advertiser sends an email to the recipient detailing the products and offers available.
It’s a blend of graphical content with links that provide the customer with easy purchase and information. It has the potential to reach millions of clients with a click.
Offer your subscribers some freebies, promos, and discount as an incentive for signing up. Keep your emails interesting: ask for your clients’ opinions often, including reviews.
Respond quickly to problems of customer service and product quality, and work on building relationships. No sales interaction is about the first sale; Focus on the next one always.
5. Use Banners Ads
Banner ads are basically used to attract visitors and drive traffic, and their main objective is simple: To be appealing to visitors, so they feel like clicking the banner, which is usually a specific promotion, such as an offer.
Placing banner ads on your website is one of the most remarkable and easiest ways, you can use to promote your affiliate programs/products effectively.
How to get paid as an affiliate marketer
Affiliate marketers can get paid in different ways, based on different performance factors. The three most common ways to earn money through affiliate marketing are:
- Pay per sale: This is a commission-based payment method where you earn a set commission based on each sale that comes from a referral visitor from your website. The more sales you generate for the merchant, the more money you make.
- Pay per lead: Merchants pay you each time you bring a lead to the company. This method is used when a user signs up for a program of some sort – a trial, demo, newsletter, etc.
- Pay per click: Click-through affiliate marketing pays you each time a visitor clicks on the merchant’s ad that’s on your blog. However, not each click converts to a sale and can become quite expensive, so the pay-per-click method is rarely offered by merchants.
Most affiliate networks will pay you when you reach a certain threshold, usually $100. There are several payment methods available.
They include PayPal, direct bank deposit, checks, and Payoneer. If you cannot get a PayPal account and you live in a country where the deposit or direct bank checks can be a problem, then Payoneer is the next best option.
Why you should start affiliate marketing
By now, how to start affiliate marketing shouldn’t be a question anymore. But, why do you have to start affiliate marketing, even as we speak?
1. Little or no cost to join
2. No need to create products or services
3. You don’t have to stock or ship products
4. You can work anywhere, anytime as long as you have internet access.
5. You earn passive income, depending on how you market your affiliates programs
6. You earn professional independence
7. No need to employ huge sales staff
8. You are selling what you want
9. The most profitable career choices of most potential bloggers, like Pat Flynn of smartpassiveincome.com
10. It is one of the easiest ways to make money online.
No doubt, with these reasons, I am are sure you will agree with me that starting an affiliate marketing business is not just a common suggestion, but a great business idea.
How to become a successful affiliate marketer
The secret success of affiliate marketing is not limited to hard work, consistency, but using the right affiliate marketing strategies, understanding the various traffic generation tips, and also targeting commercial value keywords. With these, the sky is just your starting point.
I hope this guide proves immensely to you.
Do you have any more questions to ask or would you like to make a reasonable contribution that will be useful to our readers? Please talk to us in the comment box below and we would be delighted to welcome your sincere contribution.
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