Affiliate marketing can help bloggers make some extra money, or maybe even an entire living! This article will discuss exactly what affiliate marketing is, how you can get started with, what to promote, and how to do it!
What Is Affiliate Marketing?
Affiliate marketing is essentially when you as a blogger sell other people’s products on your blog and receive a commission for each sale made. The commission rates vary depending on the product and are based on wherever the product owner chooses to set them.
Finding Affiliate Offers
There are hundreds, if not thousands, of different sites out there that allow product owners to set up their information products and promote them to affiliates who can, in turn, pick which ones they want. These types of sites are a good place to start when looking for products.
A few of the largest sites out there that offer these types of affiliate products include ClickBank, Commission Junction, the Google Affiliate Network, and Amazon Associates.
ClickBank is made up mostly of information products – ebooks, online courses, video series, and the like. It has been around for a long time and has several great metrics and resources that you can use to decide what is the best selling product and what is the most likely to do well on your site. You can also track how many times your link has been posted and how many sales were made.
Of course, as mentioned above, ClickBank does have its limitations. There are no physical products sold there, so you can only promote online products. If you want to join ClickBank, just head over to their site and follow their approval process. It usually takes a few days to get in.
Commission Junction is a huge marketplace that many of the larger retailers use to get affiliates for their products. Most of what is on Commission Junction is physical products, so you have a bit more choice in what you can make a commission on.
Signing up to Commission Junction requires a website plus a fairly rigorous application process, but once you are in, you have all kinds of retailers to choose from. The only downside is that you must get approval from each retailer to be able to promote their products for a percentage. However, many of the retailers in the system auto-approve everyone who applies, so it is not that hard to find something that you would like on your blog.
Google Affiliate Network
The Google Affiliate Network is very similar to Commission Junction. In fact, the entire setup and process is almost exactly the same as above.
This is one of oldest on the Internet. The Amazon Associates program allows you use basically anything that is sold on Amazon plus items sold on the other sites that they manage.
Think about all the products out there on Amazon.com! There is bound to be something related to your niche that you could blog about and sell! Amazon, also has a fairly rigorous approval process, so you will want a site with some good content on it, and maybe even some decent traffic, before you apply.
Once you are in, this program does not need you to get approval for every company or product that you want, so you can get right to it!
What Items You Should Choose
When you are trying to decide what type of affiliate marketing products you should promote on your blog, you need to consider very carefully your readers. Do not ever choose anything that is not a high-value, high-trust product. You do not necessarily need to own the product yourself, but you should certainly do your homework and make sure that the product is legitimate.
Also, think about what will really be pertinent to your readers. If your site is about bunk beds, find some bunk beds or something related to bunk beds. Do not choose to use say, an ebook about making money online. You probably will not get any sales on a product that is not relevant to your blog.
How You Can Do It
Once you have found a few products, now you obviously need to promote them! The first thing you will need to do is make sure you get the correct links so that any sales that are made are registered to your account. Each affiliate network has a different way of doing this, but in general, they will give you a link with some data in the URL, so that when someone clicks on the product from your blog, that visitor is registered as someone you sent, giving you the credit if that click turns into a sale. Most of these systems also register the click, and even if the person leaves and comes back, if they buy within a certain time period, you can still get the sale.
Most of these product owners and retailers also have marketing materials that you can use, especially ad banners that you can put on your site. These can make the process of selling a product much easier on you.
Once you have your unique links, there are several ways to promote the products. You could just put a link or a banner in your advertising space or in the sidebar of your site. This might get you a few clicks and sales, but you are going to want to do more than that to get even better sales numbers.
One of the best ways to promote these products is to write a review of them on your site. Write an honest review in a blog post specifically for a product that you are promoting and put it on your site. This way, people feel more comfortable about buying product having gotten their information from a third-party source.
If you will follow the steps outlined above and get signed up to one or all of the networks mentioned, you are bound to find something that you can promote!