Why Affiliate Marketing?
Thousands, if not millions of average folks, online webmasters, marketers and more, are turning to affiliate marketing to earn extra money from the web. Affiliate marketing offers the perfect style for the ordinary person to cash in on the billions of opportunities offered on the web each year.
But is Affiliate Marketing right for you?
Is it something that you’re interested in then it’s necessary to investigate and decide if you want to pursue further and find out if you truly want to attempt to monetize your site or content? To answer this and to get you thinking about affiliate marketing, I would like to offer some of my own experiences as a full-time online affiliate marketer. I would also like to give you some marketing tips and a few pitfalls you should try to avoid. There is always a great place to learn how to do affiliate marketing step by step for beginners and our site is a great place to start.
Truth be told, I didn’t plan to become an affiliate marketer. It just happened, mostly by collision, as I was struggling to promote my first site on Internet marketing some 10 years ago now. My original program was to re-sell some software products with hopes of making my fortune on this new thing called the Internet.
Well, to make a long story short, most things didnt’ quite start off as we originally planned. Instead of selling my own products, I became much more interested in analyzing” how to market yourself and products online” and analyze” how marketing systems operated” than actually selling my own stuff. I was much more fascinated by the” nuts& bolts” or” marketing tools” behind these online marketing systems than earning a few pennies.
I was especially interested and taken back by a new search engine called Google. Yes, there are many marketers around who have been studying Google since it first started. And I believe it was Google and its Adsense Program, in particular, that sort of legitimized the” whole idea of making money online” for me. I started to focus on other ways of monetizing my sites, especially with affiliate programs. And the rest, as they say, is history …
But enough about me, what about you?
Do you have a website? Are you interested in earning extra revenue from your site? Are you trying to earn a full-time income online? More importantly :
Is Affiliate Marketing Right for you?
First, you have to realize Affiliate Marketing is when you promote and sell affiliate products from your site or sites. Actually, selling is not too the right word because you DON’T actually sell anything from your site. You merely direct or send customers and interested buyers to the affiliate sites you’re promoting via your affiliate links.
Believe me, sometimes this concept is very hard to explain to close family and friends. Don’t you have anything to sell? How are you able make money?
To repeat, with affiliate marketing you don’t sell anything directly online … you direct clients or website users to online companies or sellers where they buy stuff and since they’re coming from your site’s affiliate associates you get credit for the sale.
I don’t immediately sell Dell Computer on my sites, I merely send prospective customers to Dell and other companies where they can buy computer products and since they came from my affiliate connections I get credit, plus a small credit in return if they buy something. Same goes for Amazon or hundreds of the other companies and products I promote with my sites.
Now Affiliate Marketing Fits Me to a Tee! Here’s why …
– You don’t manage any sales transactions
– You don’t manage any delivery of products
– You don’t have to deal with customer grievances or operate a customer support
– You don’t have to manage employees or operate a business
– You don’t have to rent an office, buy stock, or any type of products
With Affiliate Marketing all the selling and business operations are done by the company you’re promoting. This saves you from a lot of headaches and problems that arise from operating your own corporation or developing your own products. It’s all done for you.
The best part is that Affiliate Marketing has one huge advantage that sets it apart from others:
– Your sites and affiliate links are working for you 24/7, 365 periods of the year. You earn affiliate commissions while you’re sleeping, working out, watching TV or doing anything we humans do!
– You earn money even when you’re on Vacation. This happened to me last year when I went to Florida to see Bruce Springsteen in concert. Unfortunately, a band member fell ill so I didn’t get to see Springsteen but I did make more than enough online to pay for my whole journey WHILE on vacation. It was also the first time, I didn’t have access to my sites for more than a few days, but they still paid my affiliate commissions.
– Once you get your affiliate connections set-up, they will continue to earn revenue for you automatically. All your online marketing can be automated and run from your home office or from anywhere you choose.
– Keep this in your head, all your content and sites stay in place and work for you. Work you did writing that great article two years ago is still bringing in affiliate sales today.
– Plus, with Affiliate Marketing, all your marketing materials( banners, sales copy, videos, ads, connects …) are all provided for you by the Affiliate Network or Company.
– There’s little stress with affiliate marketing principally because you’re your own boss and you can work at home. No office politics or all that foolishness. No commuting. In addition, there is very little capital investment, for a few hundred dollars or much less, you can have a site up and running on the web.
However, Affiliate Marketing does have some real disadvantages :
– You can often earn much more if you develop and sell your own products. You’re not really getting the most important return on your site’s content by selling other people’s stuff. The earning margin is also possibly much higher if you sell your own products.
– There is also the issue of lost commissions and theft of sales, you can never be sure you’re getting credit for all your traffic and referrals. In most cases, you’re not.
– Many times there’s stiff rivalry from other affiliates selling the same stuff and using the same marketing materials … although many top affiliates create their own marketing materials so they stand out in a crowded marketplace.
Since I am a full-time online affiliate marketer potential benefits far outweighs the few downers associated with this great lifestyle. Mainly because it is just that: a lifestyle rather than a job. I never think of it as a chore or running. Maybe, that’s because I am my own master, I can work from home and specify my own hours. I can take time off, I can go on vacations or I can live anywhere in the world where there’s Internet Access and these days that’s just about anywhere. The sense of liberty is truly intoxicating, to say the least.
If you do find Affiliate Marketing is something that you would like to pursue, even part-time if not full-time, here are some of my best tips-off for increasing your affiliate income and sales :
– Focus your marketing efforts and attention on programs and products which give you recurring or residual income. Make one sale and get paid for years to come.
– Develop your own sites and marketing materials so that you stand out from the other affiliate marketers. Create your own unique selling posture even if you’re not technically selling the products. Give extra bonuses if they buy from your relates or site.
– Find a way to use as many free SEO Software and Marketing Tools as possible. There are lots of options available to you for free that may just be usless and shiney objects however if you take your time and check them out there are some amazing tools available to you for free that will greatly assist your marketing efforts.
– Build your own listing of customers who are interested in the products you’re promoting. Grow your own list, as well as that of the affiliate corporation you’re promoting. You will ever have these subscribers and you can promote other similar products to them.
– Concentrate on targeting”long tail keywords” with your content and sites; these multi-worded keyword phrases are easy to rank high for and usually have better transition rates.
– Cloak your affiliate links to cut down on affiliate steal. For instance, ClickBank has a simple HTML code that will conceal your connection. Use it.
– Internet customers and especially shoppers want simple helpful information to make their buying decisions easier. Offer them with valuable info they can use in their task and they will reward you with a sale. Also giving away coupons and online discounts will increase your marketings and commissions.
– Use the major affiliate networks like Commission Junction, LinkShare, ClickBank, Amazon, Shareasale … I have found these networks very simple to use and very effective. Plus, their checks never bounce!
– Keep a close eye on your monthly marketings, with many of the companies if you go over $25,000 or $50,000 in marketings for the month, you get extra bonus incentives. I have found these bonuses can dramatically increase your monthly income.
If you do find that Affiliate Marketing is right for you, chances are nearly 100% certain that you will never regret it. Affiliate marketing offers one of the least stressful ways of earning a living on the planet and the lifestyle can’t be beaten. Anyone can change their lives with affiliate marketing.
I did and you can too!