Affiliate Marketing for Dummies
If you are a content creator that doesn’t have any product or service to sell but enjoy content crafting, affiliate marketing could be just for you. Say you are a blogger(of any type) and you love being one. You love your audience and really are bonding well with them. But life is really harsh sometimes, and you still have to go to work from nine to five so that you’ll make enough money to keep living and keep creating.
What if there is an easier way? What if you could just focus on the content crafting?
Well, there is a way! You can do that!
‘But I don’t have any product to sell.’
Well, even without any service or product, with big enough audience you’ll be able to make a living out of your blog.
Affiliate marketing is not the only way for you to make money online, but I believe it is one of the easiest. Especially if you are a content creator, before anything else.
Let us introduce you to the fundamentals of the Affiliate Marketing.
What is Affiliate Marketing
Behind the incomprehensible terminology of every professional field most often than not, there is a simple explanation. Same goes for marketing – digital or not, affiliate or not.
Being absolutely straightforward about what affiliate marketing is, we can say that it is a win-win-win situation (no mistake, there are three winners here). Presuming you are promoting a decent product or service on your website, your audience will win(by buying a nice product), you’ll win(by getting a commission), your commissioner will win(by making a sell).
As you probably guessed already, the idea of the affiliate marketing is to promote the product or service of already working and often known business.
The most important part of the affiliate marketing is the audience. Having the right audience and offering them the right product/service is absolutely crucial for you to succeed in this initiative. This topic we’ll examine in a little more depth later in the article.
For now, it is important for you to remember that the affiliate marketing is as easy to setup as it gets. The one thing you’ll have to have is a stage and an audience that you love and you want to give the best to.
In order to simplify the topic, let’s try to come up with a simple definition:
“The act of investing time and effort to promote another company’s product or service in order to get a commission of every sale(or lead) that comes thanks to your assistance is called Affiliate Marketing.”
How Does the Affiliate Marketing Work
As we’ve already covered, the most important part of this way of making money online is your audience (which in fact is true for pretty much all the other ways of money making). No audience – no sales. No sales – no commission.
I won’t get tired of repeating this!
You can, of course, start the site simultaneously with a chosen affiliate program. That approach is not wrong. But keep in mind that in order to be able to promote you’ll need to offer a valuable content to the users.
Now that we’ve said enough about the audience, let’s unveil how the affiliate marketing works.
How do companies track who is sending traffic and making the sales?
This is one of the most common questions about the affiliate marketing. How will you know that you’ve made a sale and how the company you are promoting will know that the last sale came from you and not from someone else? Well, the easiest answer is – with a unique link that the company provides you with in order to know where the referral comes from.
Well, the easiest answer is – with a unique link that the company provides you with, in order to know who the referral is.
You put this link on your website as an anchor text or banner and when someone from your audience clicks on it, he or she will be redirected to a custom affiliate link on the company’s site. If the user buys the promoted product or service, you get a commission.If the company doesn’t provide you with such a link, just don’t start with it. No matter how much money per lead they promise you. If the system doesn’t provide you with a custom URL, there will be no legitimate way to track your results and for the company to calculate how much money they owe you. In other words, if this is the case, the program is most likely a scam. Don’t put any time or effort promoting them.
Offer: Free Web Hosting
If the company doesn’t provide you with such a link, just don’t start with it. No matter how much money per lead they promise you. If the system doesn’t provide you with a custom URL, there will be no legitimate way to track your results and for the company to calculate how much money they owe you. In other words, if this is the case, the program is most likely a scam. Don’t put any time or effort promoting them.
How to Become a Successful Affiliate Marketer
Presuming you’ve already built your WordPress website and a whole lot of people are following you, we won’t be covering that part.
Here we’ll examine the key elements of what you should and shouldn’t do to become a successful affiliate marketer. Of course, being successful is subjective. On the other hand, if you want to get involved in affiliate marketing, there is only one meaning of the word ‘successful’. That is, of course, to make a satisfactory amount of money in commissions. Having a reliable and well-known partner in your affiliate marketing endeavor is a must if you are going to make a living out of it. Here are the basic guidelines to achieving success in this enterprise:
Of course, being successful is subjective. On the other hand, if you want to get involved in affiliate marketing, there is only one meaning of the word ‘successful’. That is to make a satisfactory amount of money in commissions. Having a reliable and well-known partner in your affiliate marketing endeavor is a must if you are going to make a living out of it. Here are the basic guidelines to achieving success in this enterprise:
Having a reliable and well-known partner in your affiliate marketing endeavor is a must if you are going to make a living out of it. Here are the basic guidelines to achieving success in this enterprise:
- Promote only quality affiliate products or services. Using them is highly recommended. If you don’t want to use them, why your audience should?
- Get to know the affiliate program/s that you are going to use. Find out what are the terms and conditions and if they are suitable for you.
- Don’t promote anything that isn’t related to what your site is about. If you are telling people how to save money from the grocery shop, they probably won’t be interested in buying an airplane. Well, they might be, but surely won’t be able to afford it. Give them access to products or services that will be helpful to them. Nothing else.
- You can offer a diversity to your audience. Don’t be a hard seller. Don’t try to make them buy something expensive or unnecessary, just because you’ll get a nice commission. You can as well offer them a few interchangeable products.
- Start an email list. The most successful affiliate marketers use email in their affiliate marketing. Don’t put this off. Email marketing can increase your affiliate profits significantly.
- Monitor your endeavor. Find out what is working and what is not. Don’t be shy to try a new approach.
Most important! Don’t forget that you are a content creator, not a salesman. Go give your audience nice, valuable and useful content. The rest will come by itself.
Keep Your Integrity
This piece of advice would never be stressed enough, so I decided to separate it from the others. There are way too many people ready to signup to any affiliate program and recommend any type of product or service. Some are eager even to lie to their audience. All of that just for some revenue. And maybe they’ll get what they want… for a while. Again, the most important thing for an affiliate marketer (or anyone else for that matter) has to be its audience. Thus, you should keep it in mind when recommending a product. Don’t mislead your audience into buying something they don’t really need, or that won’t help them. Don’t cheat on yourself in order to get a small commission. For a short period of time that may be really satisfying but in the long run it will only bring you troubles.
- Don’t recommend products or services you don’t believe in.
- Don’t overdo it. Selling the products of two or three companies is perfectly fine, especially if you have specific audience and content.
- Don’t publish anything that you wouldn’t otherwise.
- If you’ve tried the product or the service, and there was something you didn’t like about it – share your honest opinion with the people that trust you.
Keep your integrity!
Affiliate Marketing, PPC, and CPM Ads – What’s the Difference?
Affiliate Marketing we’ve already covered. PPC & CPM might be new terms for you… or they might not be. Whatever the case is, we should explain them in a few words, just so the article is understandable for everyone.
PPC or pay per click is a type of advertising, rewarding the publisher when a user clicks on the banners(or links) that are published on the website. In this type of advertising, it doesn’t matter if the users are buying or even engaging with the website afterward. Anyway, the revenue is essentially low.
CPM(may be referred to as RPM – Revenue per mille) is another type of common web advertisement. If you choose to monetize with this type of advertising, make sure that enough people are visiting your website on regular basis. This is necessary as in this advertisement method the media(publisher, content creator) is getting paid on every thousand impressions of the ad. Depending on the advertiser the revenue with this approach could be quite bigger than the PPC but more often than not – lower than the Affiliate Marketing.
The positive side of these advertisement methods is that the user doesn’t have to buy anything for you to receive a profit. This is the main reason why you’ll get lower revenue. The company that pays for the ads is paying only for the presence on your online property. This is why they pay less and you get less.
Affiliate Marketing VS. PPC & CPM Ads
Although they have touchpoints, these types of website monetizing approaches are all different. Thus it is very hard to compare them. Depending on the traffic that you have and the effort you are planning to put into your website, a different approach would be appropriate. Or a different mixture of them.
Say you have a well-known news website, you can use all of the approaches altogether. And if you have a blog, you have to be a bit more careful. The reason why you should be more careful when having a blog is the life duration of every post. As you can imagine, if you post once or twice a day the posts will have much longer life than if you are covering the world news, where something craves for the public’s attention every few minutes. And if you decide to publish a sponsored post, having a long life duration of the posts will possibly bring you a bit larger revenue.
If your posts have long life duration it is possible for you to be harder to find direct advertisers. Of course, everything depends from blog to blog, and from site to site. The topics that you cover and the website’s guideline will be more than enough for you to decide how, when and what to advertise.
If you want to know which one of the advertising approaches would repay you best, there is no simple answer.
The PPC advertising method pays little to nothing to the content creator. Thus, if you are planning to upload quality content on regular basis, I would highly recommend you to go for CPM or Affiliate Marketing.
On the other hand, the PPC also has its positive sides. Especially if you are about to create a static content web page. If you have a small website with a few pages that you won’t update that often, you can use PPC ads as well. The best way to monetize a website depends also on the audience that you have. If your audience is predominantly poor or middle class, it would be extremely difficult (nearly impossible) to get affiliate commissions on something as expensive as a yacht, for example.
The different ways to monetize a website might look absolutely the same on the outside. Still, there is a great difference between the Affiliate Marketing, where you won’t get paid just for clicks and PPC or CPM which will bring a revenue to you even if people are just ‘staring’ at them.
First, try to get to know your audience and your website. Afterward, the appropriate type of advertising will come easily.
Our Affiliate Program
If you have the right media and audience, you could always signup to our affiliate program. We could proudly and without exaggeration say that the affiliate program we are offering is one of the best available on the market. We, of course, are not trying to diminish our competitors. But there are way too little companies eager to share the full profit with their business affiliates. With the partnership we offer you, you’ll get up to 110$ for a single sale.
AwardSpace is well known and recognizable brand. Thus, the sales won’t be hard at all, especially if you have the right audience. You can write copies about our hosting, which could vastly raise your commissions, or you can use our affiliate banner.
The Affiliate Marketing could be extremely profitable. Nothing can stop you from using this type of website monetizing simultaneously with all the others. Of course, with the time passing by, you’ll find out that some of the approaches are more profitable than others. Which one is the best for you, depends on a lot of factors. Your strengths and weaknesses, for example, also the main topic of your website etc. Whatever enterprise you are about to start, always keep your audience in mind!
About the Author
A writer by avocation, web enthusiast by choice. In love with almost every type of art.