How To Make Money In Affiliate Marketing For Beginners
Affiliate marketing isn’t a particularly complicated thing to learn. However, there are a number of steps to take and some techniques to master. In This post I am going to tell you how to make money in affiliate marketing for beginners
Affiliate Marketing Explained
How Does Affiliate Marketing Work?
I am going to explain how affiliate marketing works with a simple example.
Anna is a keen mountain biker and she wants to track her rides with a GPS smartwatch. So she goes online and searches “best mountain bike gps smartwatch” in Google.
You have an affiliate marketing website in the mountain biking niche and have written a guide on how to choose the best mountain bike GPS smartwatch. She sees your guide in the Google search results and clicks on it.
In your guide, you have a number of recommendations, giving the pros and cons of each watch. On the back of the information you give, Anna decides that she would like to buy a Fitbit Ionic Smart Watch.
Your review has an affiliate link that takes Anna to the online shop Chain Reaction, where she buys the watch. The affiliate link tracks the sale and you get a percentage of the sales price.
As you can see the affiliate marketing business model is pretty simple. It allows you to make money from products that you don’t have to buy or ship yourself. You make money from promoting other people’s products and services.
How Do You Attract Visitors To Your Website?
To make your affiliate marketing business a success, you need to understand how to attract traffic to your website.
One way website owners attract traffic to their website is to pay for their content to get to the top of Google searches. As a beginner affiliate marketer, this isn’t advisable. You won’t have a marketing budget and this is an expensive way of doing it.
The best way an affiliate marketer gets traffic to their website, is to create quality content, based on what people are searching for.
Going back to the mountain biking niche, you content will all be based around this topic and what people want to know. You learn what people are looking for with keyword research. Keyword research is essential for creating content that people will find. It tells you how many people are searching for information on a particular topic and how many other websites have created content based around that topic. This way you can judge if the topic is worth writing about.
Once you have a good list of keywords to base your content around, you can get creative. The content you create has to do two things. Appeal to your intended audience and be seen as relevant to the search term by search engines.
The most relevant content will get to the top of Google searches. It will also engage your audience which will eventually earn you money.
Types of content you can create include:
- Buyer’s guides
- Personal experiences
It is very important to choose a good affiliate marketing niche to work in. Not all niches are equal in terms of how much money you can earn. You need to choose a niche that is:
- Focussed and not too broad
- Relevant and not likely to go out of fashion
- Have enough of a following to have plenty of potential customers
- Not too competitive, so you have a good chance of getting your content to rank highly
How Do You Monetise Your Website?
By creating content that ranks highly and appeals to your audience has huge potential to earn you money. I mentioned earlier about affiliate links that track the sales you get through your website. These affiliate links come from joining affiliate programs.
I go in to more detail in my post What is an affiliate program and how does it work? But, if you can think of something that can be bought online, there is a good chance that there is an affiliate program for it.
Many affiliate marketers join the Amazon Associates affiliate program. This is because it is easy to join and you don’t need to wait for approval. As Amazon has millions of products for sale, Amazon Associates is suitable for pretty much any niche you can think of. There are a few rules you need to follow with Amazon Associates. If you don’t stick to the rules, Amazon can close your account without warning. There have been many affiliate websites rendered useless for breaking the rules.
The other way you can monetise your website, is to place adverts on to it. The easiest way to do this, is to use Google Adsense. This works by giving you a little piece of code to drop in to your website. This code will automatically place adverts within your content. the adverts are based around your content topic or what the website visitor is interested in, based on their web searches. Every time tomboy clicks on these adverts, you get a small amount of money.
You need to have a huge amount of traffic to make sufficient money from these adverts. Be warned though. Adverts distract your website visitors from the content and your affiliate links. You can make more money from an affiliate link when somebody buys through it than if they click on an advert. So you need to decide for yourself if you want to use both affiliate links and adverts.
Is Affiliate Marketing Dead?
You may have seen sceptics saying affiliate marketing is saturated and you can’t make money from it anymore. This is not true.
Affiliate marketing cannot be saturated. This is because it is a method of selling products. The only way you will experience “saturation” is if you choose a niche that has too much competition. This is why choosing an affiliate marketing niche is so important and it is the first step of the process.
Advantages Of Affiliate Marketing
When I was looking in to starting my own online business, I wasn’t sure what I was going to do. But, I knew what I wanted to get out of it:
- I wanted to be able to choose my own hours
- It had to be possible to work from anywhere
- It had earn me enough money for the amount of effort I was willing to put in
- It had to be legitimate
- There had to be good resources for learning how to do it
- It had to have a low start up cost
After a long of research in to all the possible online businesses to start, affiliate marketing ticked all the boxes.
I can work at any time I want. This means I can make the most of my day. My passion is the outdoors and I love to go snowboarding and mountain biking as much as possible. Affiliate marketing allows me to get on the mountain in the morning to get the best snow conditions or take advantage of the best weather. This may mean that I work late at night, but I am totally cool with this, as my life is pretty balanced.
If I want to I can take my laptop anywhere with me in order to do some work. This means I can have a change of scenery if I want to get out of the house. I have no plans to move from my home in the French alps, but if I did leave, I can carry on working without any interruption to how I work.
When done properly, affiliate marketing can be very lucrative. If you promote a product or service that earns you $30 per sale, you can do very well out of it. Check out the infographic below to see what I mean.
My research taught me that affiliate marketing is a legitimate way to make money. Once you know about it, you can see it everywhere online. Newspaper websites, review websites, blogs, travel websites etc all use affiliate marketing to make money from the traffic they get. The only thing you need to be carful of, is poor quality training or scammers pretending to be gurus trying to get your money.
Affiliate marketing is a popular business to start up. This is because it has very low start up costs. You only need a computer, an internet connection and a hosted website to build your business. This makes it a very viable option of most people, especially when you compare affiliate marketing to starting up a traditional bricks and mortar business.
What You Need To Know About Affiliate Marketing Before You Start
After everything I’ve told you so far, you may be thinking affiliate marketing is easy. Affiliate marketing isn’t too complex, but there are some things you need to know in order to make your affiliate marketing business a success.
It Takes Time
There are “gurus” online that will tell you that they have the secret to making money quickly with affiliate marketing. This is not the case, as it takes a long time to make any money at all. There are a few reasons for this:
- The learning curve – A good knowledge of the techniques involved in affiliate marketing is essential to your success. They are not complicated, but there are a few new skills to learn. You really need to remember to use them in everything you do.
- Mistakes – You will make mistakes that will slow down your progress. With the nature of these mistakes, it isn’t always easy to spot them. It can take months before they are apparent. But, you need to learn from this and move on.
- Google’s algorithms – New websites are put in to what is known as the “sandbox”. They stay here for about four months while they prove themselves to be good sources of information. While in the sandbox, it is difficult to rank highly. Once out of the sandbox, it is possible for your content to rank within an hour or so.
- Creating content – It takes time to create quality content. The content you create should be about 1500 words as a minimum. It should also be created in a way that appeals to your audience and to meet the requirements of search engines in order to rank highly.
You Need To Be Consistent
Consistency is very important to both your audience and to search engines. Both want to see websites that are continually updated. This is because the more quality information a website has the more useful it is. Search engines like a website to be as useful as possible and will push the most informative ones up the rankings.
You Need To Get Educated
To speed up the process of being successful, I recommend that you educate yourself. Learning the techniques will give you a clear path on what to do and reduce the amount of mistakes you make.
You can trawl the internet looking for the correct methods. Doing this will give you lots of information from different perspectives. However, the problem is, is that you can get information overload with lots of conflicting accounts on the best practices.
You will also come across lots of affiliate marketing gurus. I’m not saying all of these guys are fakes or scammers. But, you need to be wary of the ones that don’t give you any information until you hand over your credit card details. Some offer lots of false promises of fast money, while others want you to buy their eBook. Some of these eBooks may be fine, but I have found a more reliable and trustworthy source of information.
Where To Learn About Affiliate Marketing For Beginners
When I was researching affiliate marketing, I wanted to know the best way to learn about it. If I couldn’t find a legitimate training resource, I would have looked in to something else. The “gurus” were putting me off and I didn’t want to miss out on essential information from just searching the internet for information.
I nearly gave up, until I found Wealthy Affiliate. The first thing that attracted me to Wealthy Affiliate was the fact that they were not too pushy. Their approach was more appealing than the shouty videos from guys with super cars and boats trying to sell me courses online.
The next thing that I liked about Wealthy Affiliate, was the Free Membership. This gives allows you to get hands on experience with affiliate marketing. The training takes you from knowing nothing about it, to scaling up your business. The Free Membership also gives you two free websites to start your business from. I go in to more detail in my rundown of the Wealthy Affiliate Free Membership, but in summary you get:
- Comprehensive training to take you from the basics to scaling up your business
- Two free hosted websites
- Jaaxy keyword research tool
- Access to the Wealthy Affiliate community to get tips and information from
- Technical support
- An assigned coach
The only thing you need to sign up to the Free Membership is an email address. Therefore, it is a risk free way to decide if Wealthy Affiliate or affiliate marketing is for you.
This is exactly what I did before signing up to the Premium Membership. I still use Wealthy Affiliate for all my websites to this day. The continuous improvements and weekly training updates are extremely useful. Check out my full warts n’ all review of Wealthy Affiliate to see what I like and don’t like about the platform.
That Is How To Make Money In Affiliate Marketing For Beginners
Affiliate marketing is a great way to make a living. It is important to do it properly though, as the techniques are essential to your success. I advise you to check out the Wealthy Affiliate Free Membership. You will soon know if you want to carry on with it or not. If you have any thoughts or questions about the subject, please leave them in the comments section below.