Affiliate marketing - Tips to beocme a affliate marketer
Nowadays, everyone is looking for an alternate stream of income. Yes, you can make money any time, from anywhere, even when you are sleeping! But how? Every business wants to grow by offering more value to its customers. Companies selling online products often partner with niche-specific bloggers, and these bloggers who agree to work with these companies are called affiliates.
That's the basic idea that backs affiliate marketing. It's time to consider this most lucrative revenue stream of 2021. One can easily make a living through an intelligent affiliate marketing strategy. This less traditional marketing tactic is trendy and beneficial to both affiliate marketers as well as brands.
- What is affiliate marketing?
- How does affiliate marketing work?
- Types of affiliate marketing
- Types of affiliate products available to promote
- Affiliate marketing channels
- Benefits of being an affiliate marketer
- How do affiliate marketers get paid?
- Examples of affiliate marketing
- Tips to become a successful affiliate marketer
What is affiliate marketing?
In affiliate marketing, an affiliate marketer receives a commission for marketing another brand or product. Thus, the affiliate promotes a product or service they enjoy and earns a certain chunk of the profit from each sale they make.
These affiliates generate traffic or lead to the products and services. In turn, the company pays the commission fee and incentives to them. This is done through affiliate links of the product. The company that runs an affiliate partner program can track the links that generate leads and check how many converted to sales. The goal is to increase product sales. Affiliates also earn money on product sales without even creating products of their own. In this way, it is a win-win solution for both the merchant and the affiliate.
Affiliate marketing is a result-oriented marketing program. This act of selling is outsourced over a limitless network, as the internet has expanded the eminence of affiliate marketing.
The affiliate marketer enforces text ads, links, or product banners on its websites, blogs, social media platforms, or through email to its clients and audience. In addition, digital marketing firms make use of commercial advertisements in the form of articles, videos, and images to pull their audience's attention to the affiliate service or product.
How does affiliate marketing work?
In affiliate marketing, three different parties are involved:
- Product creator and seller
- The affiliate
- The customer
An affiliate marketing program involves the following simple steps:
- Spot and join an affiliate program
- Pick out products or offers to promote
- Get a distinctive affiliate link for each product or offer
- Advertise those links on your website, blog, social media platforms for your audience
- Get a commission whenever a customer uses your links to make a purchase
Types of affiliate marketing
There are three main types of affiliate marketing:
Related affiliate marketing
In related affiliate marketing, the affiliate promotes those products or services they have some relationship with. Usually, the product or service is associated with the affiliate's niche. So through its influence, expertise, and trust, the affiliate generates traffic for the product. However, the affiliate refrains from making any claims related to using the product or service.
Unattached affiliate marketing
The affiliate has no relation to the products or services they are promoting in the unattached affiliate marketing model. And hence it is the most non-connected form of affiliate marketing. Here affiliates have no related skills and do not make any claims about using the products or services.
Involved affiliate marketing
There is a profound relationship between the affiliate and the product or service promoted in involved affiliate marketing. Here what all matters is trust. Affiliates use the product and share confident and positive reviews with followers and audience. Based on these reviews, the customers trust and buy the product.
Types of affiliate products available to promote
Most of the affiliate income comes from one or two core products that the audience needs and pays a fair commission. So, identifying core earning products is an essential step. Later on, with time, you can add complementary products to your promotion list. There are four different types of products usually promoted by affiliate marketers these days.
The market for online courses is vast. These online courses cover all topics and subjects imaginable. Online courses are usually offered at a higher price point as compared to other digital products. Hence the earnings are also higher from each affiliate sale. Also, it is comparatively easy to identify courses of your niche.
Although as an affiliate partner, you have to spend some time reviewing these online courses before promoting them. So make sure that these courses deliver what they promise. You cannot promote anything and harm your reputation and personal brand!
Digital downloads are available instantly to the audience. So readers don't have to wait for them to come in the mail. These online digital resources could be ebooks, audio or video files, or PDFs.
Examples: Amazon ebooks, iBooks, Software like games, apps, plugins, mobile apps, music, movies, and TV shows.
Online, hosted, and professional services
As an affiliate, you should not limit your earning potential by geography or location. So you can promote any online, hosted, or professional service providers with whom you have worked in the past. Since services are generally offered at a higher price, this type of promotion usually has a higher earning potential than digital downloads.
It is not challenging to grow as a service affiliate and help your audience with specific expertise. Also, most of the hosted services offer recurring commissions. So you get paid for as long as your referred customers use the service.
Examples of professional services are various designers' services, Accounting, finance, legal advice, creative businesses like media, content marketing services, and consulting services.
Examples of online/hosted services are Website platforms and services, Email service providers, Course platforms, Virtual assistants, or customer service support.
The best bet for an affiliate marketer is to promote high-quality physical products. However, the commissions on e-commerce products are low because of the overhead charges. So to make a decent income, an affiliate has to sell a whole lot more products. Therefore, it is advisable to buy the effects first and review them before promoting them. Examples are tech products or gadgets, niche shopping.
Affiliate marketing channels
To keep the audience engaged and receptive to purchase affiliate products, affiliates share a few common practices and advertise the products through different marketing channels.
Influencers are the most benefited from affiliate marketing. They can impact the buying decisions of a vast segment of society. It is easy for them to convince their followers to buy affiliate products. These influencers promote affiliate products or services through their social media posts, blogs, and interactions with their followers and audience. In turn, they receive a share of the profits as their commission.
To ensure brand recognition and recall, an influencer needs to add elements to tie up with the brand. So brands partner with niche-specific influencers to promote their brands and products. With their branding and aesthetic, influencers promote the products through reviews with photos, account takeovers, or live chats and videos. These days, influencer marketing campaigns are viral on Instagram.
Bloggers find a product or service they like, write a comprehensive review, and promote it to their audience and readers. In turn, they earn part of the profit on each sale they make.
With their high potential to rank organically in search engine queries, bloggers are the most suitable and preferred product sale conversions. This is because they drive traffic to the seller's site.
Few affiliates promote brands and products through emails. Instead, they send email newsletters to their audience. These newsletters include hyperlinks to products. They earn a commission if the consumer purchases the product through these links.
Affiliates need email addresses for this. So they run various campaigns to collect email addresses and send out emails related to the products they want to promote.
Paid search focused microsites
These days microsites are also a hit in affiliate marketing and driving product sales. These microsites are separate from the main site and advertised within a partner site or on the sponsored listings of a search engine.
Microsites are more focused and deliver relevant content to a specific audience. As a result, they lead to increased customer conversions through calls to action.
Large media websites
Large media websites are designed to attract a considerable amount of traffic. These websites usually have millions of audiences. They promote products by using banners and contextual affiliate links. Hence the product gets vast exposure, and as a result, there are increased conversion rates and sales.
Benefits of being an affiliate marketer
Generates passive income
Affiliate marketing offers the potential to increase your passive income significantly. It provides the ability to make money even when you are sleeping. An affiliate introduces new products and builds campaigns for the current audience. Meanwhile, the recent work continues to generate revenue in the backdrop. You have to put an initial amount of time into the campaign, and you keep on receiving money long after you have finished it.
Working as an affiliate marketer is relatively straightforward. It is a low-cost, quick, and hassle-free way of earning an extra chunk of money. There is no cost associated with joining affiliate programs. An affiliate can start making money without any upfront investment. It's an ideal money-making scenario, where an affiliate can generate passive income through commission.
No need for customer support
An Affiliate handles the "marketing" side of the product and is only educating the customers. An affiliate marketer acts as the link between the seller and the consumer. All the consumer complaints, if any, are dealt with by the seller. An affiliate is never concerned about customer satisfaction or customer support. It is the sole responsibility of the seller.
Facilitates work from home
An affiliate launches campaigns for its audience and receives revenue from the product sellers while working from the comfort of home.
Convenient and flexible
As a freelancer, the affiliate is independent to set goals, shape career paths, choose working hours, and select the products of interest.
Affiliate marketing is a performance-based program. An affiliate gets paid for the work done purely based on the performance.
How do affiliate marketers get paid?
Affiliate commission rates vary depending on the running offer on the product or the company. On the lower side, you can earn about 5% of the sale amount, whereas you can also earn 50%. Few affiliate marketing programs provide a flat rate per sale instead of a percentage. The affiliate gets paid in several procedures:
Pay per click
The affiliate gets paid to redirect consumers from their marketing platform to the seller's website in the pay-per-click program. So, the affiliate needs to engage the consumer to move from the affiliate's site to the seller's site.
Pay per sale
This is the most frequently used and standard affiliate marketing structure across the globe. In this, the seller pays the affiliate a certain percentage of the sale price of the product. So, the affiliate needs to get the customers to buy the product.
Pay per lead
The affiliate gets paid in a pay per lead affiliate program based on the conversion of leads through the affiliate link. Here the affiliate convinces the consumer to visit the seller's website and complete the CTA (Call to action). This could be subscribing to a newsletter or for a product trial or downloading software.
Examples of affiliate marketing
Amazon affiliate marketing
Amazon's affiliate marketing program is the world's most extensive affiliate marketing program. Influencers, bloggers, and creators all around the globe sign up to Amazon's affiliate marketing program and earn compensation for the sales of products and services their sites generate.
Amazon offers up to 10% commissions for qualified sales to its associates. Based on product and program categories, Amazon rates are fixed. In addition, sometimes Amazon comes up with special commissions on selected offers or products to its associates.
eBay affiliate marketing
eBay offers an affiliate marketing program in the name of eBay's Partner Network. eBay pays commissions when a buyer bids on or purchases an item within 24 hours of clicking the eBay purchase link on the affiliate's site. After that, it pays the commission only if the buyer wins the auction within ten days of the bid.
Commission rates of eBay range from 1 to 4% and depend on the category of items sold. Because of low revenue, items like Gift cards and products sold by charities are excluded from eBay's Partner Network.
Tips to become a successful affiliate marketer
Give a personal touch
There is an endless number of products and services available for affiliate marketing. Always pick and recommend those products that you believe in. Make sure that your affiliate campaigns promote valuable products, and your followers enjoy them. It will establish the reliability of your brand as well.
Select campaigns carefully
Always study the product and its demand and research the seller before promoting and teaming up. Ensure that you are spending your valuable time and your follower's trust on a profitable product and a seller you believe in.
Review products and services
Choose products and services of your niche and start reviewing them. Then try to influence your followers and audience on why they would benefit from purchasing that product or service. While reviewing, try to compare the product to others in the same category. Also, generate detailed content to improve conversions.
Build a rapport
While beginning your career as an affiliate marketer, you need to choose a niche to cater to and cultivate an audience with particular interests. So instead of promoting a large array of products, try to market to the people most likely to buy the product. This will increase the likelihood of sales conversion.
Stay updated with the running trends
To stay competitive in affiliate marketing, it is essential to keep on top of new trends. This will guarantee higher conversion rates and revenue.
Use various sources
There are many affiliate marketing channels like an email campaign, a blog, social media, and cross-channel promotions. So don't refrain from any one channel. Instead, try to reach the target audience through many sources.
By now, we hope that you have plenty of ideas for the types of products you can promote on your website or blog as an affiliate. This unique and profitable model is trendy these days because of the availability of the internet and improved technologies. Just choose a great digital product or service you believe in and share it with your followers and audience.
Try to provide some valuable content to the readers. Also, be upfront, transparent and honest in your reviews. With some knowledge, hard work, and persistence, you can do it. All your efforts will pay you back, and your dream of making some passive income will come true!
About the author
Dennis Hoinkis has been working as a web developer and in online marketing since 1998. After building up a marketing agency and the exit in 2013, he consulted international groups as a freelance consultant. Since 2020, he and his team now offer staffing services in this field.
Dennis Hoinkis CEO, FSOM Group Corp.