There’s no shortage of ways you can make money online. However, few are as flexible and rewarding as Affiliate Marketing. If done right, it can be a lucrative way of earning an income by producing creative and valuable content.
Affiliate Marketing enables you to monetize your content by promoting other companies’ products using affiliate links. When somebody buys a product or service based on your referral, you earn a small commission on that purchase.
In this article, we’ll introduce you to the basics of affiliate marketing and discuss how it works in practice. We’ll also show you how you could benefit from using it and give you some help getting started.
What Is Affiliate Marketing? How Does It Work?
Monetizing your website doesn’t have to be a difficult or compromising endeavor. In fact, it can be incredibly rewarding, both from an economic and creative perspective. Plus, it doesn’t require a lot of the legwork involved in other methods of making money online.
In simple terms, Affiliate Marketing is when you earn commissions for recommending products/services to readers (or people you know). This is done by joining affiliate programs, where you get unique links (tagged with your personal ID) that tracks whenever your links convert to a sale. If someone out there buys something through your link, it rains money. Or, well, usually a small percentage of the sale, but it’s a start!
Affiliate Marketing as a monetization stream is perfect for website owners, because we recommend things on a daily basis. It’s also a largely passive way to make money, which frees up your time to do other cool things, like travel or do the things you consider enjoyment. One of the best ways to monetize your website/blog, so you should read on to learn all about it!
Affiliate marketing involves promoting products from external vendors on your own website. While definitions sometimes vary, there are generally three or four parties involved in an affiliate setup. Since these terms can be confusing, let’s take a moment to clarify the ‘who’s who’ of affiliate marketing:
- The affiliate. Also known as ‘the marketer,’ this is the person running a site that contains affiliate links. The affiliate receives a commission on each purchase made by visitors who found a product by clicking on one of their links.
- The consumer. This is a visitor on the affiliate site, who clicks on an affiliate link and completes a purchase (whether that’s the original item being promoted, or something else from the same company).
- The network. This refers to the internal or third-party platform that the affiliate program is operated on. This means they’re the ones providing the links that the affiliates use and paying the affiliate their commissions.
- The merchant. This is a company that sells products being marketed by the affiliate. In many cases, the merchant and the network are the same, as some companies run their own affiliate programs.You might be curious about how the merchant knows which affiliate is responsible for the purchase. That’s actually the easy part since every affiliate is given a unique link that tracks each product they promote. This lets the merchant track all referrals using cookies to ensure that they know exactly how much money they’ve earned thanks to each affiliate (and what to pay them in return).
- An affiliate publishes a blog post on their site. The post is a review of a pair of sneakers, which are sold by the merchant.
- At the bottom of the post, the affiliate includes a link that leads to the sneakers’ product page.
- A consumer reads the blog post and, intrigued by the review, clicks on the affiliate link.
- Once on the merchant’s website, the consumer decides to purchase the sneakers.
- The merchant earns a profit off of the sale and shares a portion of that money with the affiliate.
Why Should You Learn Affiliate Marketing?
Here are three compelling reasons:
- You can monetize your website/blog sooner than you would if you created your own products from scratch.
- You can learn what types of products your audience is clamoring for, reducing the risk of any future product launch of your own.
- You can get your readers used to the idea of buying from you — and increase their level of trust (as long as you pick the right products/services to sell and stay honest).
All pretty significant advantages to you as a growing marketer.
But that’s not all. There are additional benefits to Affiliate Marketing as well:
- It’s easy to implement. You share a link with your readers and that’s it. You don’t have to worry about tracking sales, providing customer service, setting up payments, or anything else. All that support is handled by the merchant.
- It doesn’t require you to have a support team in place. Affiliate marketing is completely doable even if you’re a one-person show.
- It doesn’t require specialized expertise. You don’t have to be a world-renowned expert in your niche. You only need to be familiar enough with your topic area to know what products are good and worth recommending to your audience.
- It’s low-effort and low-risk. It doesn’t require a significant time or money investment on your part.
Sounds pretty good in theory, right? Let’s see if affiliate marketing is right for you.
The potential to earn money by simply sharing links probably sounds tempting already. However, Affiliate Marketing comes with a whole host of advantages beyond the obvious one. Let’s take a look at some of the main ways being an affiliate marketer can benefit you and your site.
First of all, it’s a low-risk and inexpensive business. The bare minimum for getting started as an affiliate is having a blog, a website, or even just a social media profile. This makes it a very cost-effective method for earning money. It also means you don’t have to commit a lot of cash up-front since you can start small and grow your marketing efforts over time.
Another compelling aspect of Affiliate Marketing is that it lets you be creative, and provide something genuinely useful to your audience. Since you can use affiliate links pretty much anywhere, you can set up a review site, publish long-form articles, or even produce video content. Since you’re promoting other companies’ products, you don’t even need to worry about actually creating, shipping, and supporting the items yourself.
Affiliate Marketing also gives you the freedom to choose what you promote. In other words, it offers you the luxury of being picky. Not only do you get to decide precisely which programs to work with, but in most cases, you’ll even select the individual products and services you want to promote. As such, you always have full control over what’s featured on your site.
Last but not least, Affiliate Marketing can be very lucrative (although keep in mind that it’s not a get-rich-quick scheme). Since you’re earning a percentage of every sale you refer, there’s no maximum ceiling for earnings either. This means that if your affiliate site takes off in a big way, you could potentially end up making a great passive income.
The flow is pretty straightforward once you understand it, and it works the same no matter what kind of product you’re promoting or how established you are as an Affiliate Marketer.
So let’s look at the typical progression for a person who’s serious about making Affiliate Marketing a major source of income.
Affiliate Marketing For Beginners (In 3 Steps)
As we’ve already mentioned, affiliate marketing has a relatively low barrier to entry. To help you get started quickly, we’re going to walk you through the first steps for turning YOU into an affiliate marketing success.
Step 1: Building your own website
First and foremost, you need a WEBSITE of your own if you want to be successful online. People try to throw together a business without a website and they end up with nothing but failure. You cannot spam the heck out of Facebook or Instagram and expect results,
A website is equivalent to the foundation for a building. In order for someone to have a quality home that will last, the contractor must first set his foundation, then complete the construction of the home. An online business is no different and your foundation is going to be your website.
You can actually get some really awesome websites for completely FREE these days. Literally 10 minutes from now you can be up and running online, you NEED A WEBSITE.
Step 2: Creating Content
You have your website, a solid foundation, now what? The next step is going to be creating content. Your content is going to be where a good deal of your traffic (through SEO) comes from. This will give you the ability to build relationships with your visitors (which generates revenue), and the creation of your brand (which will lead to long-term business and success). Content can be a variety of things, from text, to comments/dialogue within your content, to video and audio.
Step 3: Your Audience
Now that you have a solid foundation and started building, your website with content, you are going to need some visitors or also known as website traffic.
These are all things that can be learned within Wealthy Affiliate, the top place to get an education in online business anywhere. So if you don’t understand what some of these things mean, they can most definitely be learned. I have been working full time on the Internet for a few years now and I would be more than happy to help you out with any of your questions, simply find/query me within WA (requires you to create a free account).
The Bottom Line On: “Is Affiliate Marketing For Beginners”…
It’s a completely achievable reality.
Sure, it’s not as easy as pushing a magic button, but with a little knowledge and persistence you can definitely do it.
Once you’ve gained a respectable following, affiliate marketing is one of the best ways to make money blogging.
And the best news is that it’s so easy to get started.
I did a lot of research to find the right one, and so I chose Wealthy Affiliate. I figured it made sense to learn from the best, and with a Starter Membership being $0 (No Obligations, No Credit Card Required), I had nothing to lose. I go more in-depth about it in my review, but the training courses and step-by-step video tutorials was definitely a game-changer for me.
Affiliate Marketing is unique. This marketing technique enables you to monetize your own site, choosing exactly what products to promote and how.
If you want to jump start your success:I really do recommend signing up for your FREE STARTER MEMBERSHIP. It has helped me SO much in terms of starting out and getting in the right mindset for affiliate marketing.
Do you have any questions about getting started with affiliate marketing? Please leave them below in the comments section and I will get in touch with you soon. Thank you for taking the time to read my post and I do hope that it will be helpful in you moving forward in your online success.