How To Become a Great Affiliate Marketer

How to Become a Great Affiliate Marketer

Affiliate marketing has been around almost since the beginning of the internet, but understanding it and mastering it is still a challenge for a lot of affiliate marketers. What is it, how do you utilize affiliate programs, and can you really make money with affiliate products?
The first place to start is understanding exactly what affiliate marketing is. In short, it’s a system where an online retailer pays you, a blogger or website owner, a commission for any visitors and/or consumers that you drive to their website through referrals on your site.
Going a little more in depth, it works because each company that you have an affiliation with gives you a specifically-coded link that is unique only to you. When the company tracks sales, they can search by that code to see if any sales were generated through your special link. Then you get a designated fee or percentage of profit for everything sold through your link.

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For example, let’s say you’re a model train enthusiast. You’re reading a blog written by a fellow enthusiast, and that blogger includes in his post a link to a website where you can purchase a particular train that he loves. You click on the blogger’s link (which is unique to him), are redirected to the site where you can purchase the train, and soon you’ve bought the train itself. That blogger just earned a set sum because he helped to drive you, the consumer, to the site where you made a purchase.


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Everyone wins – the blogger gets a commission, the site gets the sale, and you get the model train. Win, win, win!

What companies who use affiliate marketing have figured out is that it costs them very little in terms of commissions. And if, following our example, you didn’t know about this site where you purchased the model train from before this blogger directed you to it, it’s now one you know and it’s very possible that you’ll use the site again. Now the model train seller has a higher likelihood of making more money from you in the future.

​How can you get in on the Affiliate Marketing game?

Follow these six simple steps to success.

  1. Establish Your Online Presence: Although this seems pretty obvious, it’s a very important first step. If you don’t have a professional-looking site with current and correct information on it, your readers are much less likely to trust your content or click on your links – or even keep coming back to your site at all. Take the time to make sure that your website is professional and visually engaging, with content that appeals to your niche readers.
  2. Research: There are a lot of different companies out there who offer the opportunity to become an affiliate marketer with them. Doing your research is a critical next step. One of the worst mistakes you can make is joining too many affiliate marketing networks. You’ll need to decide on a few companies to start with, and explore growing beyond those later as you continue to build your readership and expand your marketing efforts. Here are three of the most popular affiliate marketing sites available today. They are a good place to start.
    • Amazon.com – Amazon is the largest online marketplace in the United States. The site once famous for selling books now sells just about everything – or connects you to someone who can. The company has strict policies about signing up to be an Amazon Associate, as they call their affiliate marketers, and how you can make money. But the fact that you can link to just about any product on the market today gives you almost endless opportunities for product promotion on your site and make it worth the hoop-jumping to get involved with them. You have to make at least one sale within one year of becoming an Amazon Affiliate in order to stay one, which makes step 1 in our process even more important because you’ll need to have readers to click on your links and purchase some products. Learn more about Amazon Affiliate.
    • CJ.com – Formerly Commission Junction, CJ.com’s mission is to provide you with the best affiliate marketing opportunities on the internet today. They do that by creating relationships with big-name companies. You apply, at no cost, to be a “publisher” with CJ.com. When you’re accepted, you can then apply to be part of the affiliate marketing relationships that they have already set up. The drawback is that you have to individually apply for each of those relationships in order to become an affiliate with those particular companies, and some are hard to get into because they are large corporations who are looking to form partnerships only with people whose sites have large amounts of well-established traffic. It may not be the best place if you are a beginning blogger, but because it costs nothing to join, you’ve lost nothing on taking the chance. A great feature of CJ.com is that it also keeps track of all of the money that you earn and all of your credited transactions, which takes that burden off of you. Read more about them here.
    • Clickbank.com – Clickbank positions itself as the ultimate place to find any type of goods or services that you can promote as part of your affiliate marketing. You are not limited only to products, although they have plenty of those, but also all kinds of services like employment opportunities, vehicle history reports, and even courses to learn a foreign language. A unique feature of Clickbank is that it tells you on each good or service just what the percentage that you will earn is if you have a successful promotion (someone purchases it through your link) and how this product is currently faring in their marketplace. You can read more about their affiliate network and how to become involved in it here.
  3. Apply to Become an Affiliate Marketer: Once you have done your research on which networks or sites that you want to be an affiliate marketer with, it’s time to actually apply and join. The process for each site can take anywhere from a few days to a few weeks, so be prepared for a little bit of a wait before you can start your promotions.
  4. Promote Products and/or Services through Your Affiliate Links: You’ve become an affiliate. Now it’s time to get promoting! The more you promote, the better the chance that you’ll start to see a stream of income begin to generate from your affiliate links. Here are some tips to keep in mind as you promote.
    • Include promotions as part of your post or article research
      As you research topics for your blog, make sure that you’re researching what goods or services you can promote in the midst of your blog posts. If you’re writing about starting a website, include an affiliate link to a web hosting company. If you write about travel, include links to luggage or books on travel.
    • Don’t over-promote
      While it’s true that the more you promote, the more opportunities you have to make money, it’s also true that too many promotions within a post or article is a turnoff to readers. Generally limiting yourself to several well-placed promotions is a good strategy. It’s also worth considering the amount of return on any purchases as you consider which promotions to focus on. The higher the cost of the product or service, the more money you receive if someone purchases it through your link. Try to make sure that at least one of your promotions is a higher-priced item.
    • Remember to cross-promote in several mediums
      Obviously you’re using your affiliate marketing links in your website or blog posts, but don’t forget about social media. Promote your posts on Facebook and utilize Pinterest to drive traffic to your site. The more traffic you get, the more likely it is that someone will use your affiliate marketing links.
  5. Earn Money: Each affiliate marketing program has set ways in which they pay you the money that you have earned through your links. As you sign up to be part of these networks, make sure that you understand when you will be paid and how you will get your money. You can usually find all of that information on the site that you’re becoming an affiliate of, but if it’s not there, make sure you email them to get in writing the amount and terms of payment.
  6. Repeat! It might take you a few posts to get the hang of good and effective promotion, but it will soon become second nature to you to use. You’ll find yourself thinking in terms of your affiliate marketing as you find yourself writing and shaping your posts. You’ll get better and better at making it seem effortless that the right product or service is promoted at the right time in the right place on your blog. As your readership grows and your readers’ trust in you grows, so will your profits.

Becoming an affiliate marketer is a no-brainer for website owners and bloggers. It’s a low-risk effort that offers the potential for great return. It takes the pressure off of you to create your own product or service and market it. A lot of people will tell you that in order to make a good passive income, you have to be creating your own material. With great affiliate opportunities like the ones mentioned above, there’s no need to spend the time and effort to create something unless you’re extremely passionate about it and you really want to do it. Instead, you can make your money off of other people’s products and services.

Creating a steady stream of passive income through affiliate marketing can seem like a challenge. But the answer to our initial question of whether or not you can make money from it is most definitely YES! Take a deep breath and follow these steps to begin making money today through affiliate marketing.

​My success story of becoming affiliate marketer

  1. While research for a web hosting company for passiveincomeboost.com I came across BlueHost web hosting company.
  2. I have signed up with BlueHost company to host this web site.
  3. I had and continue to have great experience and therefore decided to promote BlueHost. I have joined its affiliate program. I have created the “Passive Income Boost” YouTube channel and uploaded some video tutorials on how to install WordPress on BlueHost. In addition, I have written a blog post called “top 10 Reasons Why Bluehost Is the Right Powerful Web Hosting Option“.
  4. After promoting it, on YouTube, FaceBook and the blog I have earned some commissions

BlueHost Affiliate Program DashBoard

I don’t have a product of my own, but I am able to promote a product that I love and enjoy using. As you can see Affiliate Marketing is  WIN WIN WIN situation – the product owner WINS, the new user WINS , and the affiliate marketer WINS as well.

Now it's YOUR turn!

What is/are your favorite affiliate marketing program/s ?
This post may contain affiliate links.

About the author

Levi

W2 employee in the hunt for #PassiveIncome ! I am covering my journey to create a Boost in my income through: A) Passive Income Online (#AffiliateMarketing, #EmailMarketing) B) Passive Income Offline (#RealEstateInvesting for positive cash flow).

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