A complete guide to affiliate marketing for beginners
What is affiliate marketing?
In affiliate marketing, you promote another merchant’s or company’s products and they pay you a commission if someone purchases through your affiliate link.
And do you know, why is affiliate marketing the best method for beginners? Because it is one of the best ways to generate passive income and you can work from the freedom of your home.
The affiliates can be content creators, bloggers or even companies. They promote the products or services of the merchant or individual who creates them. When a consumer purchases a product through the affiliate’s content by clicking on their affiliate link, the merchant pays a percentage of the sale to the affiliate.
How affiliate marketing works
The merchant whose products the affiliates promote gives each affiliate a unique link. This link helps to track who was responsible for making the sale.
When a consumer clicks the affiliate link on the affiliate’s website, a cookie is stored in their device. This cookie allows the merchant to track the sale. Cookie also holds a specific expiration date (mostly 30 days) so the affiliate gets paid even if the buyer delays the purchase of the product.
In majority of the cases, affiliates get paid only if the consumer makes a purchase through the affiliate link. However sometimes they also get paid for generating leads or clicks.
Steps to start affiliate marketing
1. Pick a niche
All the content you create and the products you promote as an affiliate marketer should revolve around the niche you pick. Pick a niche which you enjoy and know about.
Creating content about an uninteresting niche will be very burdensome and put unnecessary pressure on you. Another thing to keep in mind is to make sure the niche is profitable.
2. Build a website or choose a platform
Building a search engine optimized website is crucial for successful affiliate marketing. Your website name should include a target keyword which is related to the content you create.
While building a website make sure,
- It is optimized for mobile devices.
- It doesn’t take more than 2 seconds to load.
- The design and layout is responsive and user friendly.
- Affiliate links and calls to action are clear and noticeable.
Apart from websites, you can promote products and services through social media platforms like YouTube and Instagram. You can also build audiences through blogs.
3. Join an affiliate program
The next step is to sign up for an affiliate program. You can sign up for many programs but focusing on one or two is recommended for beginners.
Try to avoid low paying high volume affiliate programs because you make low commissions per sale. Instead, sign up for high paying low volume programs.
4. Pick products to promote
While choosing products make sure:
- They are good quality and have good ratings.
- They are relevant to your niche.
- You would personally buy and use them.
Unless you know about the product very well, it is highly recommended to test it before you recommend it to your audience. This way you can offer your honest opinions and your consumers will trust you when they make a purchase.
5. Create content
Create original content which provides valuable information to your consumers. Make sure you are completely authentic and genuine in your product reviews.The content you create can be blog posts, YouTube videos or other social media posts.
6. Track your affiliate links
Tracking your affiliate links will help you know which links are performing the best or creating the best conversions.
This way you will understand your target audience better and optimize your site or make changes to your content according to what they like best. You will also learn how to adapt your marketing strategies in order to generate more sales.
7. Getting paid
The way you get paid will depend upon the payment structure of your affiliate program. It could be monthly or weekly payouts. Make sure you go over the payment policy of the affiliate program before you sign up for it.
If you are looking for ways to generate passive income which doesn’t require you to stick to a particular time schedule, affiliate marketing is a great option for you. You might not achieve big success overnight but you can definitely grow over time as long as you apply the best affiliate marketing practices.
Story by Res Marty. Marty has always dreamed of working from home and making money online. He talks about how you can achieve the dream through affiliate marketing on his blog, Affiliate Academy.