When talking about starting an online business and generating passive income, affiliate marketing is one business model that outshines all other business models for massive ROI in just a limited amount of time.
This means that you can start affiliate marketing in a week and earn money in that same week if you can market effectively.
Affiliate marketing is one online business model that has produced more financial stability in no short amount of time than every other online business model.
Being a middleman is one of the ways to make money in the 21st century. This has worked for people all over the years, even before the dawn of the computer age and is still working up till now.
Selling as a middleman has become official and rebranded into Affiliate marketing.
Do you have the following Questions;
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This article has been created to help answer the above questions with clarity. Make sure to stick to the end to get a comprehensive understanding.
What is Affiliate Marketing?
Affiliate marketing is the process of earning income every time you promote someone else’s products or services.
In layman’s terms, you get paid if you generate a sale for the company. However, suppose you don’t create a deal. Then, you do not get paid.
Affiliate marketing, in other words, means selling for commission. You earn a percentage on every successful sale you make.
There are three main parties involved: The merchant. For example, a retailer sells products—the affiliate. For example, a product review website links to products on the retailer’s site.
The consumer, who visits the affiliate site, clicks the affiliate link to the retailer’s website and purchases the retailer’s product.
Why Should You Start an Affiliate Marketing Business?
Affiliate marketing business is one online business model that has proven to be seamless and unstoppable in the information age; affiliate marketing allows you to get a reward for sharing helpful information; it is a business model that has been around for an extended period and is here to stay.
Do you seek a stress-free money-making online business model? Then you should explore the world of affiliate marketing.
Here are very few beneficial reasons you should start an affiliate marketing business.
1. You don’t have to create your product.
In a regular business model, you have to own a product to sell one and make money. Still, affiliate marketing abstracts everything because, in affiliate marketing, you make a profit by selling other people’s products.
You don’t have to worry about product quality or packaging; all you need is testimonials as proof and your approval; you are then good to make money.
2. You don’t need product research.
The second reason affiliate marketing is beneficial to everyone is that you don’t have to deal with the stress of engaging in product research which can be time-consuming; all you need do is seek out an existing product in your most prefered niche and market them like crazy.
3. You don’t need to deal with customer support.
One aspect of every business that is crucial is effective customer service; when customers buy from you and don’t have anyone to guide them through a product, they might never come back again; slowly, such a business is gradually dying.
In affiliate marketing, you don’t have to worry about customer support because all will be carried out by the original creator of such a product.
Affiliate marketing gives you peace of mind; if any product guide is needed, such a customer is referred to the direct manufacturer.
4. Affiliate Marketing is Free.
When people hear of affiliate marketing, they find it too hard to believe it is a free business model. However, it does not come at an extra cost to get started; all that is needed is your undiluted attention and effective marketing strategies. The bottom line is affiliate marketing is free.
5. You only get to focus on traffic.
As mentioned above, all you need to scale your affiliate marketing business is traffic; an affiliate marketing business works online, so you have to focus your attention on getting enough traffic to convert the sales you desire. This article will explain the various methods to help you drive traffic as an affiliate marketer.
How To Start an Affiliate Marketing Business and Make Money.
To begin making money as an affiliate marketing entrepreneur, you might need some valuable tips.
1. Understand How Affiliate Marketing works.
Just before diving into affiliate marketing, you have to understand how this business model works to better achieve so much more in a bit of time.
Affiliate marketing can get rather technical, even for those well-versed in digital marketing. Fortunately, you don’t need to know all the details to get started.
Affiliate marketing can be seen as spreading product creation and product marketing across different parties, where each party receives a share of the revenue according to their contribution.
It’s not just the promotion or product creation that defines who you are as an affiliate marketer.
You can be both the creator and the marketer and still profit from the underlying idea of sharing revenue.
Anyone could be the merchant behind an affiliate marketing program, from solo entrepreneurs to startups to massive Fortune 500 companies. They don’t even have to be actively involved. They have to have a product to sell.
The actual engineering behind every affiliate marketing program is the affiliate program software.
To give you a heads up on how affiliate marketing work, here is a brief explanation.
When an affiliate registers the merchant’s program, they are given a unique ID and a specific URL to use when promoting the company’s product.
The affiliate includes the link in their blog post and via their email marketing efforts and invites readers to click it to find out more.
When a potential buyer clicks on the link to visit the affiliate partner’s site, a cookie identifying the affiliate is placed on the website visitor’s computer. The cookie guarantees that the publisher is credited with the referral sale even if it occurs days or weeks later.
Whenever a buyer executes the sale process, the merchant checks the sales record for a cookie identifying the source of the referral.
If the merchant discovers a cookie with an affiliate ID, the affiliate is credited with the sale. The merchant makes records open so that the companion can see their referrals (clicks) and sales. The merchant pays the affiliate commission at the end of each payment period (i.e. revenue sharing).
2. Choose your Niche.
Choosing your niche is also essential for starting an affiliate marketing program.
There are many affiliate marketing programs out there, most of which are niche-based, while others are centred around general stuff. Most times, you may already have an existing audience that trusts you on a particular topic, and it becomes easy to sell to them when you promote an affiliate marketing link to them.
When choosing a niche, aim for something you’re passionate about and knowledgeable about.
This helps you come across as an authentic and trusted source of information for potential customers. It also enables you to evaluate which products and brands you want to promote.
3. Decide on What Affiliate Marketing programs To Join.
You should know that there are so many affiliate programs out there, and it is very wise not to invest your time and energy in them because not all are genuine as they claim to be.
Here are very few things to consider before you join an affiliate network or program,
1. Commission Rate.
The commission rate of any affiliate program is simply the amount entitled to you after an affiliate has completed a sale.
As an affiliate, you should always seek out what you intend to gain from every affiliate program you join.
This determines how much you can earn and whether or not such an affiliate program is worth your time.
The percentage of a sale funded by an advertiser to an affiliate for referring a new customer. This percentage can range from the low single digits up to 50% or higher.
2. Earnings per click.
Not all affiliate programs pay you per click, but you can be fortunate to find very few ones ready to compensate you for every click.
The income an affiliate earns for each click to an advertiser’s website from an affiliate link. However, this definition is a little misleading as the true definition of EPC calculates the amount per 100 clicks.
3. Cookie Duration.
A web cookie is a small piece of data sent from a website and stored on the user’s computer by the user’s web browser while the user is browsing.
Cookies were designed to be a secure tool for websites to retain stateful information on the user’s browsing activity, such as clicks and other activities performed on a particular online platform.
They can also be used to remember final pieces of information that the user beforehand entered into form fields on the websites, such as names, addresses, passwords, phone numbers and even credit card numbers, a perfect example where you might have seen cookies in operation is on your Google Chrome browsers.
In most cases, not all affiliates would convert immediately, and this can be a horrible experience because you tend to spend a lot on marketing.
But with the help of cookies, referral link and information is stored by default on the browser, so anytime the lead is ready to convert into sales, the link is automatically counted on your behalf.
For example, with a 90-day cookie duration, if a user engages in such an affiliate link and performs a purchase within the period of 90days, the affiliate receives credit for the sale.
Standard cookie durations are typically 30 days. However, you can find programs as low as seven days and 90+ days. Longer cookie durations are a common feature of programs I recommend.
As stated in the section before now, It was indicated that affiliate networks are hosted platforms that allow you to promote other affiliate programs.
What I like about affiliate networks because you get the chance to promote all other affiliate programs at once. That way, the overall effect is massive, leading to higher earnings.
4. Join an Affiliate Marketing Program
With Affiliate networks, you have all your earnings stored in one place and not scattered all across various affiliate programs; I highly recommend you sign up for more affiliate Networks than affiliate programs; even the majority of the affiliate programs are usually signed up on an affiliate network.
I curated a complete list of affiliate networks that you can join; you should make sure to explore all of these after the other, trust me, it would save you a lot of time and stress.
1. Commission Junction.
Commission Junction is an affiliate marketing network that has existed for over ten years now; presently, as I speak to you, it has over 5,000 affiliate programs hosted on its platform.
When you sign up on Commission Junction, you get easy access to various affiliate programs. All you need do is apply to each of them and await responses from the advertisers. Usually, a reaction takes 24 – 48 hours before a confirmation is sent.
Before requesting advertising access for any advertisers on Commission Junction, you must fill in some critical personal and business info.
This information is usually tax forms, Bank account info, addresses, and so many others.
Payment is channelled via direct bank transfer, PayPal and Webmoney.
TRY IT NOW – CJ.com
TravelPayout is an affiliate network for travel affiliate programs worldwide; top travel affiliate programs like Bookings, Trip-Visor, and Hotels directly use this platform to reach out to publishers worldwide.
All you need to get started is to go ahead and create an account with TravelPayout and request access from the list of advertisers shown to you, obtain relevant links and promote the hell out of it.
Payment on TravelPayout is made via Paypal, direct bank transfer and Webmoney.
Travel Payout is an exclusive travel affiliate network that connects with your major travel affiliate partners to help you make money; with Travel Payout, you get instant access to the best travel affiliate programs, including flights and hotel car rentals in one place.
Sign up is free and instant; you need not pay a dime; you also get multiple payment options such as Paypal, Wire bank transfer and many others.
TRY IT NOW – TravelPayout.com
Share-a-sale is another great affiliate network that has been around for a very long time; it is headquartered in the US.
Share-a-sale deals with many affiliate niches such as Home and garden, furniture, businesses, etc. With Share-a-sale, you can access various tools to promote your business, such as product links, video creatives, banners and extensive real-time reporting.
I wouldn’t say I like this affiliate network because they have a too rigorous signup process, and you are not likely to get approved.
TRY IT NOW – Shareasale.com
Rakuten was one of the first affiliate networks that I got introduced to back in my early blogging days; It was founded in 1997 and has paid out over $1 Billion in cash back to its 12 million members.
Rakuten deals with major eCommerce merchants, so this affiliate network would be very lucrative if you love to shop regularly.
Unlike every other affiliate marketing network, Rakuten operates in a different dimension, making it easy for anyone with or without a website to join and make money.
Rakuten is currently with major eCommerce brands worldwide, such as Adidas, eBay, Amazon, Micheal kors, etc.
All you need to do is sign up, install the official chrome extension, start shopping via Rakuten partner websites, and start earning cashback.
TRY IT NOW – Rakuten.com
ClickBank is an affiliate network that allows you to promote over 10K merchants from various categories; ClickBank is available in over 200+ nations worldwide. Sadly, Clickbank is yet to open its services to major countries like Nigeria and India; So many Africans have been clamouring for this to happen, but it seems like it will not be happening anytime soon.
ClickBank comes with comprehensive education and guides for newbies new to affiliate marketing to help them earn better.
You need to sign up and promote your desired affiliate program and make money.
Funds are sent via Check to your email and Paypal; hop in to click bank and check if the service is available in your country.
TRY IT NOW –Clickbank.com
NutriProfit is a health-only affiliate network that has been around for many years and is still going very strong. If you have a blog in the health niche, then this affiliate network is best for you to help you target potential affiliate programs and great market products.
You get access to health products from weight loss, detoxification, male and female enhancements, hair loss, etc.
Payment is made via Bank transfer, ePayment and Paxum.
TRY IT NOW – NutriProfit.com
The impact is another great affiliate network that every blogger should look out for.
The impact has over 1K affiliate merchants on its platform, including, Bigcommerce, Canva and many others.
Impact also comes with a sleek, unique user interface that makes it very easy for newbies to navigate its website better.
Impact pays out its publishers using PayPal, Wiretransfer and many more.
The inbuilt Impact Marketplace makes it very easy to bid for advertisers and instantly get approved. Need to get signed up to Impact today? Click the link to get started now.
TRY IT NOW- Impact.com
Expertnanire remains one of the top affiliate networks in Nigeria; It is owned by Toyin Omotoso, who holds the title of one of Nigeria’s top affiliate marketers and entrepreneurs.
Expertnaire is an online marketplace mainly dealing with knowledge-based digital products. It can also be defined as an online marketplace for high-value digital products. Note the words “ONLINE‘ and “DIGITAL” in those definitions. These digital products are high-value digital products created by top experts in their fields.
The Expertnaire Affiliate Marketing programme allows you to recommend these high-value digital products from top experts and get paid for them.
Getting started as an Expertnaire affiliate remains one f the easiest things to do, just in case you have joined any other affiliate marketing program before.
For example, let’s say a product is N20,000, and the commission for the product is 50%. So when you sell one, you get N10,000 which is half of 50% of the product sale price.
To start earning with Expertnaire, all you need so is
1. go to the Expertnaire product marketplace,
2. Browse through the products
3. Get your product affiliate link (it would look like this https://expertnaire.com/manager/product/6574234285/6665846829)
4. Promote this link using any digital channel such as a blog, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, WhatsApp, etc.).
5. Also, to remind you that you have to make a special payment when signing up worth just N10,000 ($20), which gives you a year of access to the platform.
And in the end, When someone buys, you get your commission.
I wrote a comprehensive guide on how you can promote your product using Facebook, Twitter, Google Ads and many others.
TRY IT NOW – Expertnaire.com
PartnerStack is an affiliate marketing platform that helps businesses by maximizing the advantages of partnerships with other affiliate marketers, to increase conversions and aid sales.
Thousands of affiliate marketers across the world trust PartnerStack with their campaigns. This makes it easy to recruit and work with top-notch affiliates from the online circle.
PartnerStack combines with content creators in the digital marketing industry to make online marketing efforts easy and effective for businesses.
As a blogger, you get to choose from various categories of software products to promote and make commissions from.
You also get paid as soon as sales are made via PayPal, which can be accessed using your Partnerstack dashboard.
TRY IT NOW – Partnerstack.com
5. Get The Requirements Needed And Tools.
Getting started as an affiliate marketer does not require any hassle at all; you are just going to need very few things, and they are;
1. website/ Blog.
Although you can participate without a website by adding links on social media, this works best for high-end social media influencers, and I always recommend having a website.
I recommend having a well-designed website with an SSL certificate installed for HTTPS. In addition, you should own a business email address connected to your domain and have a PayPal account set up.
2. Active Social Media Account.
Most affiliate networks do not make it mandatory to own a website to be approved into their network. However, an active social media account can do a lot, provided you have a lot of engaging followers on it.
3. Bank account/ Paypal.
Affiliate programs and networks pay you at the end of a specific period after curating your sales, and you must have a medium to receive money – either a PayPal or a bank account.
6. Promote Your Affiliate Links.
It’s never enough to join an affiliate program, and if you do, there is still a lot to do to make money off it.
I will be stating some beneficial and essential procedures and steps to help you promote your affiliate links.
1. Start a Blog.
A blog that generates traffic is enough to cause money via any affiliate programs. Most times, all you need do is to embed these affiliate links strategically in your blog post to not appear spammy or useless or even write exclusive content to make recommendations; this makes sense, and you can have willing customers.
As a content-focused affiliate marketer, you probably already know that you need these two content types: reviews and tutorials. Reviews, which we can lump together with comparisons, are your moneymakers.
They target people with purchase intent and bring actual sales. Tutorials together with guides are more for building traffic and authority in your chosen niche.
But you need both to build a brand around your website. Not all of your content should be for profit only. Your key to creating sticky content is to develop a deep understanding of the products you’re promoting.
A strong product and user-focused combined with keyword-optimized titles and subheadings are how you get qualified traffic. Without forgetting link building, of course.
Try to cover everything that a potential customer would like to know about the product. Use examples and screenshots and don’t shy away from pointing out potential weaknesses of the product.
Share your first-hand experience and tips. Transparency goes a long way. Finally, insert at least one CTA on the page using your affiliate link.
Here is an article I recommend you read to create your blog.
Also, you will need a web host and a domain to power your blog, and I recommend Bluehost to start with.
I wrote an article on how you can get started with Bluehost, and I suggest you read it and then come back to the recommended post above.
2. Build an Email Marketing List.
Having an email marketing list is a must for every online entrepreneur if you want to record any success in your online business.
Your email marketing list would contain a more targeted audience interested in what you do and likely to want to hear from you.
Sending out emails to your blog subscribers means that you must already have an audience. Creating an email sign-up form on your website is a good starting point.
Your newsletter serves several functions. It’s a way to build a relationship with your readers, distribute your blog content, and promote your affiliate products. In that order, preferably.
Getting a visitor to sign up for your newsletter means that your emails should at least share useful content.
And if possible, they should also provide perks such as your exclusive guides that are not published online or special deals on your affiliate products.
Here is an article I recommend you read to get started with email marketing.
There is so much email marketing software out there, but I recommend that you use GetResponse, which is why I suggest you use it.
I prepared an entire article on how you can set up your GetResponse profile and start to groom your email marketing list, and here is the link below.
3. Start a YouTube channel.
Youtube is another great platform to promote your affiliate link primarily if your content is closely related to the affiliate product you intend to promote.
Videos are a good way to complement your written blog content. It’s possible to repurpose your old blog articles and turn them into videos. And vice versa, of course.
So, how do you embed affiliate links into your videos? You add them to your video description and also mention them verbally in your video.
I did an article on how you can scale up your YouTube channel, and I suggest you read it.
4. Answer Questions on Quora.
Quora is a question-and-answer website where people go to find information. Every piece of content on the site is generated by users, meaning it is created, edited, and organized by the same people that use the website.
To use Quora, you need to create an account. Then, you can learn the basic functions of the website. Don’t worry, they make account creation and navigation of the website pretty easy for you. Plus, it’s free!
The only reason you should be answering someone’s question on Quora is if you have a high-quality, honest, and accurate answer. Don’t respond to users’ questions with nonsense.
The only way a website like Quora can thrive is if all users respect the requests and answers of others.
Quora can be used to generate sales for your affiliate marketing business without doing too much, however, you should adhere to the guidelines when it comes to sharing links.
I wrote a comprehensive guide on how you can grow your business on Quora, check out the link to the article below to learn more.
5. Medium is one place to promote
Unlike forums and guest post websites, content-publishing communities such as Medium allow direct placement of affiliate links in your posts.
But like all marketing channels, users will ultimately be the ones to decide how much promotion is acceptable.
Stuffing too many links in your Medium articles isn’t going to drive any traffic or sales. But adding your affiliate link at the end of a useful, informative article can be an effective strategy.
7. How Much Money Can You Make as an Affiliate Marketer?
There are no official figures because profits vary from niche to niche. Certain products are more expensive or in greater demand, while others are more suitable for passive income.
Generally speaking, if you start from scratch without any meaningful internet presence, you will be making absolutely nothing in the first months.
It takes time to build a following and then some more time to make a sizeable audience. It would help if you had vision, determination, persistence, and a pinch of luck to get noticed and start earning well.
Here is my article on starting and building a blog with excellent SEO
If you are a blogger and want to get started with affiliate marketing, you need to know that your website generates tons of traffic to help you make good money.
Your blog should get traffic, but it must be well-targeted traffic, and I mean getting the right people to read your blog post.
I recommend that you read this article on how you can master the art of search engine optimisation and learn how you can write for search engines.
Affiliate marketing is expected to hit a 6 Billion dollar milestone in 2020, the best time to dive fully. To equip you with the proper knowledge, I recommend reading this guide to help you start your blog.
Before diving deep into the basics and hardcore part of owning a website or running a blog, allow me to assume that you at least have a basic knowledge of how an entire website or a blog should run, so it’s time to stop talking and start doing.
I decided to drop a dedicated article on how you can own a perfect domain name and a cheap web host with BlueHost, and I recommend that you study and do what is advised in the article below.
Afterwards, you may return to fully digest the part you need to get started and stay on top of your game. Here is a link to the recommended article.
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