3 Things Every Affiliate Marketer Must Do

Affiliate marketing is one of the best ways to make money online, especially for the beginning marketer. But jumping into it without a plan will just leave you frustrated, angry, and swearing that affiliate marketing doesn’t work.

Affiliate marketing does work, and it works very well, with some affiliate marketers able to generate seven figure incomes for themselves.

It does, however, take a plan. Not everyone will approach their affiliate marketing in the same way, but there are three important things that must be included in your plan if you are to be successful at affiliate marketing.

  1. The proper set up of your web pages. Every affiliate program that you promote must, at the very least, have its own page, even better would be if each had its own domain. When presented with more than two choices on a sales page, most visitors will get confused or agitated and won’t choose any of them, simply leaving the page and going elsewhere to find what they need. You need to make it as easy as possible for your visitor to make a purchase through your link so that you will get paid. After arriving at your page and reading it they should only have two options: click on your link, or leave the page. It is easy to fall into the trap thinking that more products on a page will lead to more sales. It won’t. One product, one page. Keep it simple.
  2. A way to continue the communication because you and the visitor in order to give yourself more chances to sell to them. The most common way to accomplish this is by giving away a small report in exchange for the visitor giving you their email address. You should set up a separate page for this, this is called a squeeze page, and after they opt in to your list the visitor should be redirected to your affiliate sales page. Offer a high quality report. This will usually be the visitors first contact with you, and you definitely want to make a good first impression. After you have their email address, continue to send them quality information slipping in subtle affiliate offers occasionally. This will add tremendously to your bottom line.
  3. Get targeted traffic to your offer. A lot of marketers seem to believe that any traffic is good traffic. While any traffic might be better than no traffic at all, it certainly is not the best traffic. Untargeted traffic will result in extremely low conversion rates. You want the visitors that come to your website to be laser targeted to the niche that you are promoting. A small niche and long tail keywords will send your conversion rate through the roof, not only making your commission checks bigger, but also reducing your expenses and aggravation by avoiding all of those visitors that weren’t really interested in what you were promoting in the first place.

Follow these three rules and your affiliate marketing efforts will not be wasted. Those affiliate marketers that are willing to put the work in and get it done the right way are the ones who will be collecting the big commission checks.


Affiliate Marketing – Getting Free Traffic

Each month you find yourself spending more and more money on getting visitors to your web pages. It cuts deeply into your profits from the affiliate programs that you are promoting on those pages.

You start to wonder to yourself if there isn’t another way to get visitors, a way that doesn’t cost you money.

There is a way. Many ways actually.

Here are a few of those ways to get those visitors to your sites without costing you anything:

  1. Article Marketing – Article marketing is a rather simple process, and is usually the most productive source of free traffic. You write an article about a topic in your niche, include a resource box at the bottom of the article that includes a link back to your web page, and submit the article to one or more article directories. The visitors at those directories read your article and a percentage of them will click on your link and follow it to your site.
  2. Blogging – Start your own blog in your niche. Blogs aren’t just personal journals anymore, they are a business tool and they are a very good way to position yourself as an expert in your niche. You can set your blog up as part of your niche site, or you can set it up on its own domain and link back to your other sites. And while you are at it, there isn’t any rule that says you can’t have more than one blog and have them all link back to your niche site.
  3. Forum Posting – Find the major forums in your niche, sign up for accounts and start posting. Most forums will allow you to put a link back to your site in your signature. Your forum posts should not be an attempt to sell, they should provide quality information that will be helpful to the other forum users. If you make quality posts people will follow the link in your signature. If you make spammy posts, you will end up getting banned. Do it the right way.
  4. Press Releases – About once a month, more often if you have something important to announce, you should use one of the free press release services and put out a press release about your business. If it gets picked up by one of the bigger news services like Google News you can get a great number of people visiting your site.
  5. Social Bookmarking – Go to sites like digg and del.icio.us and bookmark your sites. Traffic from the front page of these sites can be enormous.
  6. Social Networking – Don’t forget to set up a site for each of your niches at your favorite social networking sites like Facebook and Myspace. They can bring a slow but steady stream of free traffic to your site.
  7. Search Engine Traffic – Getting to rank high in Google can at times be one of the hardest things to do, but one of the best ways to improve your rankings is to get a lot of quality back links. And you have been building back links by using the other six methods above haven’t you? Getting your site ranked on the first page of Google can result in an almost guaranteed stream of free visitors.

So there you have seven ways to get free traffic. Utilize all of them and ease that bite on your wallet. The increase in your bottom line will have you looking for even more free ways to get visitors.


5 Pitfalls In Choosing An Affiliate Program

Affiliate Marketing has become one of the most popular ways to earn money online. Without the need to have your own product and handle the customer service, it is also one of the easiest ways.

But you don’t want to waste your time and effort on an affiliate program that isn’t going to make you any money.

But it is more than that because when you recommend a product you are also putting your name and reputation on the line.

So how do you know if the affiliate program you have chosen to promote is the right one for you?

Here are five things that you need to look for, and avoid, when searching out an affiliate program to promote.

  1. You don’t want an affiliate program that is going to compete with you. If the product owner is heavily marketing his product using the same methods that affiliates are using, then the affiliates are going to lose out every time. Remember, there is no commission coming out of his sales, so he can afford to spend more money on the paid methods of advertising than an affiliate can and still make a profit. You want to look for a program that aids the affiliates, not one that tries to undercut them.
  2. Low payouts. Small commissions, whether a low percentage or even a high percentage on a low priced product, make it very difficult for an affiliate to make a profit on a promotion. Obviously, the higher the payout the more an affiliate can afford to spend on marketing and still make a profit. Even if you concentrate on free marketing methods, your time is worth something, make sure the program pays enough to make it worthwhile.
  3. Outdated statistics. To effectively market a product you need to know up to date statistics like conversion rates. If a program provides you with statistics that are old, or statistics that you aren’t sure are accurate, you should avoid it.
  4. Bad support. If you email the product owner a question and it has been days and you still haven’t received a reply, you probably want to continue your search elsewhere. While we all want immediate response to our questions, that isn’t really possible. However, you should receive an answer within 24 hours. And if you aren’t getting good support, the customers who have purchased the product probably aren’t getting good support either.
  5. Nothing to make your affiliate marketing easier. A good affiliate program will provide you with all of the tools to make marketing the product a lot easier. They should provide things like ads, banners, emails, and keyword lists. If the affiliate program isn’t providing any of these, it most likely isn’t worth promoting.

Affiliate Marketing can be fun and, more importantly, financially rewarding. Keep these five things in mind and avoid them at all costs. You are going to be putting a lot of time into your affiliate marketing efforts so don’t make it harder on yourself before you even start.


Top 6 Mistakes Made By Affiliate Marketers

It happens to everyone. That moment when they first discover affiliate marketing.

They are amazed at how easy it looks to make big money without all the hassles that go along with having to create their own product and deliver it to the customers.

They think they can just sit back and rake in the commissions and then nothing happens, the big bucks don’t show up in their pockets.

Where did they go wrong?

This is where they went wrong and how you can avoid those same mistakes:

  1. They were in too much of a hurry. Affiliate marketing is a game of patience. Big money is not going to be made overnight. Small steps taken over time have a cumulative effect, like a snowball rolling down a hill, the longer it rolls the bigger it gets. You can’t give up after one day. You have to stick with it for the long haul.
  2. They have a lack of focus. Pick one affiliate program and stick with it. Don’t fall into the trap of thinking you will make more money by promoting a lot of programs at once right from the start. They will all suffer because you will not be able to give them the time and focus that is needed.
  3. They pick the wrong affiliate program. A good affiliate program has three things you will need to look for. It must pay a good commission, it must always pay you on time, and it has to be a good fit for your target audience. If any of those are missing, pick a different program.
  4. They pick an affiliate program that appeals to a broad audience thinking that they will get more sales that way. You should focus on a small niche, the smaller the niche the better. The number of visitors to your site will be smaller, but the focused content will give substantially higher conversion rates.
  5. They put up a site and think the traffic will just come pouring in. Sorry, but “if you build it, they will come” only works in the movies, not in real life. You have to put in the work to get visitors to your site. You have to get backlinks, do article marketing, start an opt in email list, anything to get your site in front of people. Generating traffic is the most difficult part of affiliate marketing, that’s why people pay you a commission, you are doing the work.
  6. They just throw up an affiliate link. Web visitors are a lot more knowledgeable than they used to be. They can spot an affiliate link a mile away and the last thing a visitor wants is to be sold to, they came to your site looking for information. You must hide or cloak your affiliate links so that visitors that come to your site don’t know they are affiliate links. Visitors can and do go to merchant sites and purchase without using your affiliate link, or even changing it to their own so that they get the commission for the sale. This costs you money.

These are just a few of the mistakes that those starting out in affiliate marketing make. Don’t let that be you. Those big checks will start coming in if you do your affiliate marketing the right way.


What Is Affiliate Marketing ?

At its most basic level, Affiliate Marketing is nothing more than commission based sales. It really isn’t any different than when you go down to your local furniture store to buy a new sofa and you have three different sales people come over to see if you need any help.

Are they really that interested in helping you?

At some level yes, but for the most part they want to be the one who makes the sale to you because their paycheck is based on how many sofas they can sell this week.  In affiliate marketing on the internet you are like that salesman and whatever product you decide to promote is like that sofa, someone else made it, someone else will provide the customer support, but your paycheck depends on how many of them you can get people to buy.

Affiliate marketing is the easiest way for new marketers to start making money on the internet.  It is the easiest, and possibly the best way for most marketers, for three very important reasons.

First, the marketer doesn’t have any of the headaches associated with the creation of a product.  The product has already been created by someone else, leaving you with no production costs, no storage costs, and no overhead on a storefront.  All you have to do is get people to look at it and buy it in order to earn your commission.

Second, there aren’t any customer service issues to deal with.  If someone buys the product and has a problem of any kind with it, they go to the product owner with those problems.  Not having to deal with customer service is a huge bonus associated with the affiliate marketing business.

And third, an affiliate marketing business can be started on a shoestring with very little capital.  The only expense to get started is a domain name and hosting account.  Both of those can be gotten very inexpensively, even for free if you are are extremely strapped for cash.

To get started in affiliate marketing is a quick five step process.

  • Step one, setup a website or blog.
  • Step two, put some niche content on that site.
  • Step three, find an affiliate program that matches the niche of your site.
  • Step four, put your affiliate link on the site.
  • Step five, send traffic to the site.

That’s it, just 5 easy steps.  You could have an affiliate site set up to make you money in less than an hour.  But don’t let the simplicity fool you.  Affiliate marketing is still a business like any other.  It will require work on your part in order to produce the income you desire.  You should always be looking for ways to improve your business.



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