7 Steps to Successful Affiliate Marketing
In affiliate marketing, a brand offers commissions or incentives to third parties to generate revenue and boost sales. It is one of the popular ways of making money online.
The good thing about affiliate marketing is that you are not involved in making the product nor handling it. Therefore, it is a low-risk and low-cost business. Moreover, it is easy to scale as you can sell products from multiple companies.
If you are a beginner, or you’ve tried and not had much success, you should follow these steps to affiliate marketing.
Choose Your Platform
Ideally, affiliate marketing can be done on any platform. You can publish your affiliate links on a website, blog, or social media pages. Studies have shown that you can build a loyal audience and increase your revenue through two channels: a YouTube channel or a blog.
It is both easy and cheap to start a blog. Starting a blog will only cost you a few dollars each month for hosting and domain name. Once you publish your content, you can add affiliate links.
YouTube is another platform you can do affiliate marketing. This platform is free to use. This makes it suitable for many people. You need to optimize your content for SEO and add affiliate links in the description.
If you are using your YouTube channel to promote affiliate campaigns, you are required to disclose that. It is advisable to be transparent from the start.
Decide On Your Niche
There are so many affiliate marketers out there. Thus, if you are a beginner, you should know there is stiff competition. If you want to become successful, you need to choose your niche correctly.
A niche is a specific category in an industry. By choosing a niche, you can focus more on your audience, build authority, and rank higher in search engines.
If you will be writing the content by yourself, you should choose a topic you are passionate about. The main reason affiliate sites fail is because owners do not have passion for the niche. When you have a passion for a given topic, you can easily write content and post regularly.
Find Affiliate Programs
There are different types of affiliate programs to consider. For instance, there are low-volume, high-paying affiliate programs. These include brands that sell business software. They offer huge commissions but have a limited pool of buyers.
Also, there is stiff competition for brands that offer high commissions. As a beginner, you should avoid such affiliate programs.
The other category is high-volume, low-paying affiliate programs. The good thing about these programs is that there are lots of products to sell. A good example is Amazon Associates. You can get up to 10% commissions on Amazon products.
In this case, you will get a commission even for the products you did not recommend. You will need a lot of traffic to get a reasonable amount of revenue.
There are also high-volume, high-paying affiliate programs. Some examples include health supplements and credit cards.
There is a lot of competition in these affiliate programs as you will be competing with affiliate marketers with a lot of expertise.
I like to focus on digital products such as ebook, video training and business services. You can keep your finger on the pulse of this niche by visiting muncheye.com and previewing upcoming product launches.
Create Killer Content
You main goal with affiliate marketing should be to create high-quality content and place your affiliate links naturally. You should not just curate products and write reviews about them. Instead, you should show how the product solves the customer’s problems.
Content is king and it will always be. There are different types of content formats you can use for affiliate marketing. These include reviews, tutorials, product comparisons, and resource pages.
Reviews and tutorials are widely used because they provide an insightful review of products and how-to guides respectively.
A website without traffic is dead. You cannot make revenue if your website does not get visitors.
There are different methods for driving traffic to your website. These methods include SEO, PPC, and social media marketing.
With PPC or paid traffic, you can start generating sales as soon as you create your website or landing page. However, it has its downsides. For instance, you might use more money on advertisements than the profits you get.
The best option is to invest in search engine optimization. If you can rank higher in search engines for your target keywords, then you will get passive and consistent traffic.
Optimize for Conversions
Conversions are important in affiliate marketing. The click-through rate is the first type of conversion. This is where you have control. You can use different tactics to increase your chances of getting clicks.
The other conversion type is when the visitor purchases the product. You are not in control of this. In fact, it is the merchant that controls it.
Make sure you look for affiliate programs and products with a higher conversion rate.
Replicate Your Success
This is a trick used by many expert affiliates. You can also use it to dominate the niche and make more money.
If your first site is successful, you can build other sites on the same niche. Also, you can diversify to other niches to increase your revenue.
10 Affiliate Mistakes to Avoid
Many affiliate marketers make a lot of mistakes that hurt their online businesses, revenue, and profits. Affiliate marketing is challenging if you are doing it for the first time, or you follow every “expert” out there.
There is a need to know the practical steps to take to avoid making affiliate marketing mistakes. These are the 10 deadly affiliate marketing mistakes to avoid.
You are in affiliate marketing to make money. It is easier to get tempted to take the hat of a salesperson. You probably think that getting sales and conversions is your main priority. However, this will result in publishing low-quality content and poor results.
As an affiliate marketer, you should focus on publishing high-quality content. Take into account the customer’s intent. Rather than explaining features, reveal the benefits the customer gets.
Publishing Mediocre Content
You probably know content is king. As an affiliate marketer, your product is content. Income and conversions are products of great content. Visitors will only click on your links if they think the content is credible and valuable.
Some marketers believe that publishing hundreds of mediocre posts will outperform few quality posts. Unfortunately, this is not the case.
Your content creation process should start from keyword research. This will help you add relevant keywords to your content naturally.
Ignoring SEO Basics
Affiliate marketing without search engine optimization is difficult. Publishing high-quality content without proper on-page SEO is fruitless.
You need to ensure there are correct meta descriptions and title tags. SEO makes it easier for search engines to understand your content and rank it properly.
Your meta description and title tags should resonate with the website visitor. Also, make sure you add proper alt tags for your images.
You have limited knowledge of SEO; you can outsource it to a reputable company.
Promoting Too Many Affiliate Programs
Having multiple streams of income is good. You have heard millionaires promote this idea. However, you do not have to promote too many affiliate programs. This is because it can be counterproductive.
If you promote too many products, your website visitors will have a feeling that you know little about these products. When customers doubt your authority, this will have a negative impact on the conversion rate.
The right thing to do is to promote a few products, which are of high quality and you have learned about them.
Not Understanding Your Niche
It is advisable to choose a niche you understand well. This will benefit both you and your visitors. When you understand the niche, your passion will easily shine through. Moreover, you can spend more time on the website adding more content and improving it.
There are more guides on finding a profitable niche than finding an interesting one. If you have a passion for something, you can easily find a niche around it.
Not Collecting Customer Emails
As an affiliate marketer, you need to have a solid email marketing strategy. This will help you build relationships with readers.
Most affiliate marketers wait until their websites are successful to start collecting emails of potential leads. Doing this is a deadly mistake. Although collecting emails can be challenging at first, it does not have to be. You can promise something like an irresistible download or a free monthly newsletter and you will get opt-ins.
I like to focus my own efforts on building list of buyers, which significantly increases my EPC when I promote affiliate products and services.
Promoting Low-quality Products
It is a deadly mistake to promote any product just for money. It is also unethical. Before you promote any given product, you should ask yourself why you are doing it.
Therefore, you should promote high-quality products that benefit your customers. In this way, you can build trust and get repeat sales.
If you need a list of top products for the Internet business niche, download my personal list.
Affiliate marketing is not a get-rich quick scheme. Even Rome was not built in a single day. Likewise, affiliate marketing s a long-term business model. You will not publish the content today and wake up rich overnight.
Expecting instant results and being impatient is a recipe for disaster. Rather than being frustrated due to a lack of results, you should foster a new mindset. Keep on building your website until you achieve success.
Not Tracking and Testing
There are some unscrupulous affiliate companies out there. Hence, there is a need to track your conversions and clicks. This will ensure you are safe from companies that steal your sales. Also, you can easily analyze the performance of your business.
Many affiliate marketers fail to track the performance of their websites. By analyzing your performance, you can make changes based on analytics.
Not Investing in Premium Tools
Every business requires the right tools to succeed. For instance, if you are doing blogging for affiliate marketing, you need to get the right tools. These tools will have an impact on your overall sales. For instance, you need web hosting, responsive theme, and more.
I like to use a WordPress tool called Thrive Architect, which gives me access to pre-built landing pages and sales pages. It is a real time saver you should check out if you are a WordPress user.