Affiliate Marketing, combined with Online Marketing is definitely something that you will want to learn and put into practise because it is a great way of achieving financial freedom.
Affiliate Marketing is a really appealing route to making money online, but know that you will need to invest some time into learning everything you need to know before working towards achieving your goals of giving up your day job and enjoying truly passive income.
What is Online or Affiliate Marketing?
Now, people are definitely earning money from affiliate marketing and we are too. But there is an important thing you need to know before truly understanding what affiliate marketing is:
- It is not a Get Rich Quick Scheme
- It is not some kind of Pyramid Scheme or MLM
- It takes Time & Effort
There is no secret technique to earning money online from affiliate marketing. Many people get drawn into all of these programs that profess to having the magic button that will make you earn money really quickly through affiliate marketing.
Guess what? None of them work, but the key ingredients you need to make Affiliate Marketing is:
- Realistic Expectations & Timescales
- The Right Training
Learn everything there is to know and put it into practise, that is the way to learn money with online or affiliate marketing.
What is Affiliate Marketing?
Affiliate Marketing allows you to choose anything you are really interested in to build an online business. It can be a hobby or an interest, or something you are really good at and that is your starting point for an affiliate marketing business.
The big advantage with affiliate marketing is the fact you do not need any products or services of your own. You will earn money by recommending other people’s products and services in return for a percentage of the sale.
That is as simple as affiliate marketing is. You do not need any products, no need to ship products to customers, or deal with any customer service queries. In fact, you do not need to be on hand to handle any transactions.
But I think the graphic below does a great job of showing you the process you will follow to be successful with affiliate marketing.
Done right, Affiliate Marketing will lead to a passive income. This is possible because you do not need to hand-hold the transaction like a traditional business model.
I am not creative at all, so I rely on Gemma for our wedding stationary business. But with affiliate marketing, you can choose any subject you want to be your starting point.
Consider your interests or passions and this can be what you choose to get started with your affiliate marketing business.
Here are some examples for a possible niche to get started with:
- Get Fit
- A Sport you like
- Gaming Laptops
- Video Games
- Trading (Forex, Stocks, Futures, etc.)
- Musical Instruments
- Business Coaching
- Health Food
- Getting Fit
- Losing Weight
- Health Foods
- Massage Therapy
- Medicinal Herbs
- Fiction Writing
- Song writing
I could go on, but the list is endless… You will find that there is always a need when it comes to any niche. You will find people are always looking for help. And that is your opportunity when it comes to Affiliate Marketing.
It is one of the best, and most profitable ways to make money online. It is also the way most people start their online business.
If you are planning on making a living online, I highly recommend you start learning affiliate marketing first before venturing into other online marketing methods.
Online Marketing involves combining affiliate marketing with many other methods of marketing online. This can include Video Marketing, Email Marketing, Social Media Marketing, etc.
Is Affiliate Marketing Really Worth it?
In our opinion, it is one of the best ways of making money online. Yes, it requires hard work but anything you decide to choose to make money will require you to put hard work into it.
But to help you decide whether it is really worth it for you, we have listed the pros and cons of Affiliate Marketing Below:
The Pros of Affiliate Marketing
Here are the advantages around Affiliate Marketing:
- No need to design or create your own product – this is a massive advantage, as it can take months or even years to design a product or an online course and you can make money by just promoting it.
- No need to maintain or update that same product – You may need to update your review or your blog to reflect the changes, but things like an online course will require you to keep that updated every time there is a change in technology, etc.
- Proven Brands help your Credibility – As you are just offering an opinion about these products and many of these products will have a proven credibility or brand that the customers will trust, it helps your trust factor too.
- There is no need to operate an e-Commerce site – Think about this one, there is no need to worry about how the customer is going to pay, or how it is going to be shipped. You don’t have to worry about the legalities of running an online shop and selling products. Is there customs to worry about. You just write about products and services and the owner of the product worries about all of this.
- It is Passive Income – what we mean by this is that you do not need to hand-hold the transaction. Your blog will be open 24 hours and if a reader clicks on your affiliate link at 2am in the morning and buys something, you do not need to be awake to earn that money. You will just have a nice email to read in the morning, stating “You made a Sale!”
- No Recruiting – Many people have experienced or seen an MLM opportunity which turns out to show that the recruiting of new members is more profitable. But the pressures and the fact that 99% of people in MLM’s lose money, that is why we recommend Affiliate Marketing and there is no such pressure to recruit. Promoting Products is the main vibe.
- Free to Get Started – There could be some costs associated as you grow your business, but affiliate programs are typically free to join, and you can get a free website too.
The Cons of Affiliate Marketing
Here are the disadvantages around Affiliate Marketing:
- It is NOT a Quick Route to earning money online – We have yet to find a legit way to earn money quickly, but many see this as a con of affiliate marketing as you cannot expect success within a couple of days or even a couple of weeks. Having said that, if you were to build a “bricks and mortar business, you would not expect to turn a profit within the first year and it has a huge outlay. Affiliate Marketing is typically FREE to get started and if you follow the right strategy, you can earn money earlier than a year, depending on the niche you have chosen.
- Motivation is Key and Often Gets in the Way – Think about how you get paid at your current job. You work for an hour and get paid for that hour. That isn’t how it works for affiliate marketing, and this can really impact your motivation until you start earning. I am not trying to put you off, but that is how we think when we are an employee. WE need to start thinking about ourselves as an entrepreneur and that is how we stay motivated until it comes to the point where we start earning money.
I picked the top two, as the advantages far outweigh the disadvantages. But the main thing to consider at this point before we explore how affiliate marketing works is that you need to get out of your head that this will earn you money quickly. It can earn you big money if you follow our strategy and the training we recommend. But if you think this will be a quick route to giving up your day job, then sorry that will not be the case.
But, if your day job is a problem or you need to earn money, then use that motivation to work hard and you will see results. The harder you work, the more you could earn with affiliate marketing.
How Affiliate Marketing Works?
These are the steps to complete to get started with Affiliate Marketing.
Pick a Niche
This is often the stage that people get wrong. Don’t get influenced by anyone who states that a particular niche is the most profitable, because any niche can be profitable if you provide the right information on your website.
Think about this, you chose Forex Trading because someone said it was profitable. But you haven’t got a clue on how it works. How could anyone have confidence in what you are writing…?
Now, consider you are really interested in keeping fit. You have a lot to offer when it comes to helping others keeping fit.
That is a great place to start with. Imagine trying to write about a subject you love compared to a subject you detest or lack the knowledge needed to help people with; which one do you think can keep you motivated and can help you become the authority within that chosen subject.
Don’t get drawn into a subject, just because you think it is profitable.
As Affiliate Marketing takes time to become successful, picking something you love will definitely lead you onto a more successful path.
But once you have chosen a subject for your online business, you still need to narrow down it to what is called a Niche.
If we go back to the keeping fit category, that doesn’t speak of a target audience really as there are too many different ways people are looking to keep fit.
If I think about keeping fit, the target audience I could target might be:
Those looking to lose weight, but then I could still narrow this down again and get to:
- Losing Belly Fat
- Losing Weight from my arms
- Diets for those looking to lose weight
- Exercises to help people lose weight
- Running aids
- Running routes
- Best home gym equipment
- How to keep fit whilst in a wheelchair
- Keep fit activities for kids, disabled, elderly, etc.
- Diet Supplements.
There could be hundreds of niches within the keep fit. When picking a niche for you to start with, you will also need to consider who your target audience is going to be and really narrow down on what you are going to start with for your content on your website.
By targeting just one of these topics and really becoming the authority in that chosen niche is where you will start, and we can really help with this too. (Read on for more information).
Once you have finally decided on what your niche is going to be, your next step would be to create your own website
Create a Free Website
This will be the foundation for your affiliate marketing business. It will allow you to explore all other avenues of online marketing, but with a property that will be your own.
The problem with only focusing on a social media channel is… what if that platform doesn’t exist in the future (like Google +) or has a security risk and you lose your data.
What if that specific social media channel not really fit with your target audience, how do you attract an audience when they are not on there…?
By having your own website, you control the flow and choose what you want to promote. The other factor is social media has a love/hate relationship with affiliate links and that is not great if you are looking to make a living from affiliate links.
To create your own website, we highly recommend SiteRubix. The website hosting, they offer is top notch, and it also comes with some great training to aid someone just starting out with affiliate marketing. But we will cover this later in the post.
For now, you can use the great tool below and see if your chosen website name is available for you to start a free website.
Create High Quality Content That Helps
Now, this is a really important step, and this is something you need to understand to be successful at affiliate marketing.
Selling doesn’t Work!! Helping People Does!
Have you ever been into a shop where the salesman has been that pushy and annoying that you have chosen not to make the purchase and left the shop?
It is the same online, you need to consider that not everyone will be ready to buy. They are looking for some help and some information on a certain product or service before making their decision to make a purchase.
You need traffic to make money online, and the way to get that traffic is by creating quality content that helps people.
You might create some high-quality how-to guides, with some explanation posts about certain subjects and then also include some product reviews too.
If you are leading the customer along the path of giving them the relevant knowledge, helping them understand what the product is and how it can help them and then lead them to a product review you have done (which includes an affiliate link).
That is a much more natural way to promote affiliate products than just pushing them straight to affiliate links.
If people are not ready to buy yet, they will just click away from your website. If they are ready to buy, but feel you are not helping them. They will probably go the same way.
So, my advice is the ensure you have a good mixture of content on your website that includes:
- How-to guides
- Explanation Posts (i.e. What is Online or Affiliate Marketing)
- Product Reviews
And always remember to help people who are also interested in your chosen niche.
What Does High Quality Content Mean?
I would also like to give you some clues as to what high quality content means. Some will teach you that you need to write content to keep the search engines happy, so that it ranks. That is not the case. You need to write in a casual way, as if you were talking to a friend and you need to make sure you answer the specific question you are targeting.
You need to be in-depth and that normally means between 1000-1500 words.
Use images, people are visual by nature and by using images you can help people understand the concepts you are trying to answer.
People are often put off by the fact that they feel they are not a writer, but we are not talking about writing an essay for college. We are talking about writing as though you were chatting with a friend and the more practice you put in, the better you will become.
When I first started, I struggled to write 500 words and now I regularly top 2000 words.
But the key thing to remember is – it is not the amount of words you write; it is the relevance of what you write.
If people are looking for you to answer a question and you state, you are going to answer it in the title.
But when they click on your website and see that you don’t, it can really harm your reputation and they will typically click back and go elsewhere.
You can do this, and we will help you do this if you feel you are ready to get started. We write this to help you and not to make it out as though affiliate marketing is difficult.
It is really enjoyable; it is hard work but so is any job. We love it, and we know that if you have the right mentality, you will love it too.
Writing this high-quality content with some keyword research (we can also show you how to do this too) will lead to that all-important traffic.
What is Traffic?
Traffic is as it sounds, how many people are coming to your website. If your content is insightful and helpful, the search engines like Google will rank you higher up the search results and then you will have people start clicking on your links.
Without traffic, no one can click onto your affiliate links.
This is where our advice might differ to some. We suggest people wait until they have traffic before applying for affiliate programs.
The reason is, you typically need to achieve a number of qualifying sales. Amazon is a great starting place for new affiliate marketers.
They have a huge product range for you to choose from, but they also require you to achieve 3 sales within 6 months to stay in the program.
Well, you won’t achieve any sales if no one knows about your website, so what is the point of applying for the program before you have traffic.
Once we have a few people starting to explore our website, that is ideally when you want to start applying for affiliate programs and adding the affiliate links to your website.
Applying for an Affiliate Program – Amazon is Great for Beginners!
Amazon offers over 500,000 products online, so this is a great place to get started. At this point, you should have some traffic coming through and you can start adding some product reviews with affiliate links included to start making some sales.
Typically, you will be accepted into the Amazon Associates program (their affiliate program), but like we said you will need to make a few sales. If you don’t, they will typically close your account. Now there is nothing stopping you re-applying. But we feel that is a faff.
You might as well wait until you have some traffic and not have to worry about your account being closed and having to reapply and change your affiliate links.
Exploring Online & Affiliate Marketing
Being able to have your own affiliate marketing business is really liberating and is such a great way of earning money online. But your website is only be the start. You could incorporate video marketing, social media marketing and start to really scale your business into a full-time income.
Once you have started getting some sales through from Amazon. You will be able to explore other more lucrative affiliate programs in your niche.
Once you have become the authority in your niche, you can always then start to broaden your reach and target other subjects related to your niche and include other products and helpful guides.
But these steps we have listed above are only the start, and we would really like to help you get started but with some expert help and support that can really help you transform your aspirations into something that is a reality.
Affiliate Marketing Training + Expert Support
By using Google and searching you can find out some information about affiliate marketing and getting started, but in reality, it doesn’t give you the support you really need to see this through.
If you are really motivated, driven and want to make this work you need a training plan that can-do justice to what you want to achieve.
If you are looking for a quick way to make money online, then my suggestion is not for you…
When we were starting out and looking for a way to earn money online, we had never heard of affiliate marketing but I read a really useful guide on how it works and they also suggested I read a little more about a training platform called Wealthy Affiliate.
So, I read a little more and was amazed at what they offered to people looking to get started with affiliate marketing.
A complete step-by-step guide on creating an affiliate marketing business, it offers websites and web hosting and some amazing tools to help someone starting out with affiliate marketing.
But what really shocked me was the abundance of support that was on offer. It feels more like a community that is always there to help when you have a question that needs answers.
Combine the Training and the Expert Support, you have something that is truly awesome and as long as you follow the training to the letter, I know you will succeed in your dream of becoming a successful affiliate marketer.
But if you think you are ready to take the first steps to getting started with affiliate marketing, with some expert help and support plus our support too, then click on the button below to sign up with a free Wealthy Affiliate Starter Membership.
It is totally free to join and will not require any credit card details.
If you do decide to accept our invitation, then we will see you inside and we will be ready to help you get started on an awesome journey to your own affiliate marketing business.
Thanks for taking the time to read our guide, if you have any questions please do not hesitate in writing them in the comments below. We will always respond to you.
If you have any experience in getting started with affiliate marketing and want to offer any advice to those looking into affiliate marketing, please write the