Nearly two-thirds of Americans live paycheck to paycheck, saving minimal funds or none at all. If this sounds familiar, you might feel like it’s impossible to turn your financial situation around. After all, you need to have money to make money, right?
Actually, the truth is a little bit different. There are some lucrative side gigs you can start right now with no funding at all. Eventually, these side gigs can even turn into full-time jobs.
One of those no-money gigs you can start right now is becoming an affiliate marketer.
Wondering how to start an affiliate marketing business? We can help. This guide provides everything you need to get started – keep reading to learn how to make the money you deserve!
- What Is Affiliate Marketing?
- Affiliate Marketing in the Internet Age
- Is Affiliate Marketing Right for You?
- The Best Affiliate Networks on the Market
- Scams in Affiliate Marketing Field
- Earning More Money With Affiliate Marketing
What Is Affiliate Marketing?
Affiliate marketing is one of the newer and more exciting ways to make money online while working at home.
Essentially, affiliate marketing means others are getting paid to promote your service or product. Generally they’ll receive a commission based on how much they sell, which means affiliate marketing is a particularly attractive proposition for website owners who might not actively be selling their own wares.
The concept was first instigated in the 1990’s with some companies sharing revenue with people driving sales in their stores. Providing an incentive to these affiliates meant that sales increased quite dramatically and the affiliates themselves were also bringing in a tidy sum so everyone was winning.
Of course, affiliate marketing now primarily takes place online but the logistics are still the same. The reason it’s so effective is that it’s essentially marketing through word of mouth and word of mouth will always be the most effective marketing tool at a business’s disposal.
A company can tell consumers that its product or service is revolutionary and unmissable until it’s blue in the face but no matter how convincing the marketing spiel, it always sounds more sincere when coming from a third party
Basically, you’ll partner up with a business to help them sell their products online. You create a website and add useful content, such as product reviews. But you also put affiliate links in your posts; that way, people reading your posts can use the links to buy the products you mention.
Every time someone makes a purchase using one of your affiliate links, you’ll get paid a commission on it. As you grow your site, add more links, and gain new readers, your profits can increase exponentially.
This is a win-win situation for both you and the brands you’re linking to. They make money because you’re helping them gain exposure to new customers. And, of course, you generate revenue with every sale made through your site.
However, you can’t just create a website, start linking to products, and call it affiliate marketing. You need to use the proper affiliate links to get commissions from the sales.
Affiliate Marketing in the Internet Age
Affiliate marketing these days of course works in a slightly different way.
Companies will pay online affiliates who will place advertisements on their sites. The commission generally works in a manner where the affiliate will get a set amount of money for each click and even more for a click that results in a sale. This might sound quite straight-forward (and it is in theory) but whilst becoming an affiliate is quite easy it’s a little more difficult creating a successful affiliate program for your own business.
There are numerous affiliate companies scattered throughout the internet but these companies could try to take you for a ride if you’re not 100% clear on the logistics of the practice.
Below we’ll be examining a few tips and tricks of the affiliate marketing trade that should help your businesses affiliate marketing program increase overall revenue without wasting time.
Is Affiliate Marketing Right for You?
There are many things that make affiliate marketing appealing to beginners.
First of all, it doesn’t require any money to get started. You’re not selling products that you carry, so you don’t need to stock up on inventory. The online marketing tactics you’ll use to gain customers don’t require any funds, just some time spent learning how to do them.
You can also choose any niche for your affiliate marketing site. You don’t want to have a general site that features all kinds of random products. Instead, you can choose an area that you’re interested in, such as cooking or fashion, and build your affiliate marketing site around that.
The people who succeed most with affiliate marketing tend to be motivated self-starters. There won’t be anyone watching over your shoulder to make sure you get the work done. But if you’re committed to the idea of making money as an affiliate, you shouldn’t find it too hard to invest the time needed to get off the ground.
The Best Affiliate Networks on the Market
Affiliate networks are all about “Power to the People.” They’re groups of associated companies that offer products and services that are complementary and share leads with each other.
An affiliate network can be small or large, with the goal to offer referrals back and forth, sometimes engaging in cross-promotional deals and generating passive income from user clicks.
In the digital world, a business lets others market its products and services, sending web traffic to its site. For that effort, the business pays the affiliate network a percentage of the sales.
Businesses can DIY an affiliate marketing strategy, but affiliate networks are a popular alternative. They do it all, from hosting merchant’s digital creatives to tracking and reporting on the measurements, and paying out commissions to the affiliates.
Companies looking for new customers but that don’t have the time or capital to launch a marketing or customer acquisition campaign can choose to pay the affiliate network for leads instead. Affiliate networks can be a powerful way to grow a customer base without having to do the marketing work yourself. But in order to be successful going this route, there’s much to consider. Here’s a look at seven key things that have to be weighed in order to achieve success.
If you are a beginner to the world of affiliate marketing, you may have the fear of working with the scams and losing your money, time and effort. There are many affiliate programs available in the market that are easy to start with and ensures a good amount as income to you.
1. Empower Network
This is a platform that is purely educational and has viral blogging as its prime strategy. This company pays the affiliates for selling the training products on internet marketing. The major specialty of this affiliate marketing program is that the affiliate receives 100 percentage of the commission out of the training product sold by him. This method of online earning can really bring lot of profit to the affiliates if they understand about the market in a proper manner.
2. Commission Junction
This is another kind of affiliate program that is suitable for the beginners in making a good amount of commission. Commission junction can be considered as a marketplace where numerous companies meet with their affiliate programs. You just need to be a member of commission junction, then you can easily apply for any of the affiliate program that you are interested in from the various companies available.
3. Amazon Associates
Amazon also offers affiliate program which is not much complicated and is easier for the fresher to start with. As Amazon is there as the brand behind, you can easily make the product sold in the market. This is the kind of website that can be of greater help for you in earning a good amount of income.
Scams in Affiliate Marketing Field
There are various scams in the affiliate marketing field that can make you lose your money, time as well as your effort. There are certain techniques available that can be made used for the purpose of identifying the scams from the genuine ones.
There is much amount of difficulty in being successful in the affiliate marketing and so check properly whether you are with the genuine people.
There is no means of earning through affiliate programming, other than commissions after selling the products. If some programs offer you with some amazing amount of income, then you can stay away from it.
How to Start an Affiliate Marketing Business: The Step-by-Step Guide
Ready to get started? Let’s take a look at how to start an affiliate marketing business with no funding at all.
1. Get on Social Media
If you already have a thriving social media presence, you’re on your way to affiliate marketing success. No social media presence yet? It’s time to start building.
Social media is another way to put your affiliate links in front of potential customers. You can start making affiliate marketing money on your favorite social media sites before your website or blog is even finished. However, to make money this way, you’ll need to be sure to have a solid following. Famoid is a perfect example of a company that focuses solely on social media, and has helped improve branding and reach for thousands of accounts and social profiles.
You can also use social media to experiment and figure out your niche. Explore your interests and see which products you can create the most buzz about. This might help you decide on the direction for your affiliate marketing site.
2. Select Your Niche
After some preliminary research, you’re now ready to decide on your niche.
Your niche should be both something that you’re interested in – and something that people want to buy. Luckily, there are products you can sell for just about every interest you can think of.
You don’t want your site to be too broad, otherwise, it will be hard to find and connect with the right audience. However, you also don’t want it to be too narrow.
Make sure to pick a niche with a healthy interest so plenty of people will want to read – and buy.
3. Build Your Blog
Now, you can work on building your affiliate site or blog. Of course, if you find lots of success on social media, you can also just stick with that!
Lots of platforms, such as WordPress, offer free, easy-to-use website builders. The site doesn’t need to be too elaborate, but it needs to provide a good home for your content.
In this step, you’ll also need to find the right affiliate program to provide you with links. Major sites like eBay and Amazon have affiliate programs. You can also do a Google search for affiliate programs in your niche.
4. Work on Marketing
Once you have your site up, it’s time to work on marketing that site.
Of course, posting regularly is an important part of marketing. People want to see a site filled with useful, interesting content. Make sure to start building up a body of posts with affiliate links in them.
However, you also need to make your site easy to find. This means learning modern digital marketing tactics, such as SEO.
There’s plenty of information on this online, and it’s all free! Financial experts like Bonsai Finance can also provide you with a source of quick cash while you get your affiliate marketing site off the ground. Not only are they experts in the financial space, they’ve also had their fair share of online and affiliate marketing to grow their brand into what it is today.
3 Steps To Earning More Money With Affiliate Marketing
Step 1: Find a problem-solving product
As a matter of fact, there are different products/services in different niches out there. I have promoted entertainment and information based products. Consumers of such products may not really get a critical problem resolved with using them. There is a huge market in these industries though and many marketers are killing in it. But if you can help your readers solve a problem, they will pay you for it.
The kind of product you promote on your blog matters a lot. Being targeted is not the only measuring factor. In every industry, there is always need to solve problems. Identifying these pain points and bringing solutions will add a lot more value to your blog.
Here are two ways to see this point!
- Problems only faced by your readers: Sometimes you may want to promote a product that solves only your readers’ problems. That’s the way most of us do it but we end up with little results because we are not helping our readers enough make a buy buying decision.
- Problems you and your readers face: This is where I have made most of my affiliate sales. If I face the same problem my readers are facing, I know it’s a money making opportunity. I will explain more of this in step #3 below.
Step 2: Own a copy of the product:
If you’ve found a product that can solve a common problem between you and your readers, I recommend you get your own copy of the product.
If you cannot get a free review copy from product authors, go ahead and buy. This helps the psychological value of your marketing.
I know some affiliate marketing teachers tell you there is no need to own the product but for the sake of this lesson, you will have to if you want to be real and more convincing.
Don’t just go to product sales page or review posts written by others. Don’t just rely on affiliate marketing materials made by product authors. Get direct contact with the product as that will help in step #3 below.
Step 3: Use the product and share your results
This is very crucial!
Now, you found a product that provides solutions to a common problem. You’ve gotten your own piece and you are using it (on yourself or your blog). If you are seeing positive results, that’s the thrilling spot.
When I moved my blog from http to https (adding security to the http protocol), I lost all social share counts on my blog.
Social share counts on social media buttons are a huge social proof factor so I became so worried that my blog has suddenly looked like a brand new website (from the Facebook or Twitter point of view).
All my readers who did the same move were in the same pot of soup. So I set looking for the solution. I soon found a WordPress plugin to resolve the problem. Good enough, there was an affiliate program tied to the plugin. So quickly, I bought a copy for my blog.
Now I have a problem faced by my readers and I
I have found a product (With an affiliate option) to solve the problem
I actually have bought a copy and it really works. My share counts are all back
What a money making opportunity!
Stuck on Affiliate Marketing? We Can Help
Anyone can learn how to start an affiliate marketing business and find success along the way. If you get stuck at some point in your journey, don’t worry. Help is available.