I believe that bloggers – who have a monetization goal – should eventually create their own products and sell them online. The product could be anything – software, an eBook, membership forum and much more. The possibilities are really endless.
The advantages of creating your own product are numerous, but most importantly you keep the entire profit from each sale (instead of an affiliate commission) and have the potential to continue generating income from those products for years.
Nevertheless, creating a product to sell online is not for everybody. There are those who don’t have the time, while others are simply not interested in creating a product. Then there are those who may not be confident enough to create a product “good enough” for someone else to actually purchase.
Fortunately, you can still make quite a bit of money online and be largely successful without ever having to create a product of your own. The way to do this is by selling other people’s stuff as an affiliate and earning a commission on each sale.
This can be accomplished in various ways, but essentially all you need to do is point traffic to your affiliate link and everything else is taken care of by the owner of the product – including customer service. Even though I successfully sell products that I have created online, I still promote quite a few affiliate products each month.
The Primary Affiliate Marketing Strategies That I Use
I use many different affiliate marketing strategies to maximize my income from affiliate programs. If you’re looking for a few ways to increase your affiliate earnings, here are the primary techniques that I recommend.
My resource page is one of the most profitable pages on Blog Basics. These pages are designed to provide the reader with a list of useful resources. I have also provided a brief description of each resource that I have recommended. Some of the products included on the resource page offer affiliate programs; so if you decide to purchase one of those products, I will earn an affiliate commission.
If you take a look at the right sidebar on this site, you will see banner ads for product recommendations. These 125×125 banner ads contain affiliate links and I earn affiliate commissions when someone purchases a product using one of these links.
More Ways to Incorporate Affiliate Links Into Your Affiliate Marketing Strategies
One great strategy is to incorporate affiliate links within the articles on your blog. I use this strategy frequently, but you have to be careful to ensure that you only link to helpful products that are relevant to the topic of the article.
I don’t recommend writing articles for the sole purpose of placing an affiliate in them. This strategy (sometimes called the conduit method) may generate a few sales for you, but from my experience it simply doesn’t work very well. I believe that most people are able to quickly determine that you have essentially written sales copy for a product and haven’t provided useful information within your article.
If you want to be successful at affiliate marketing, don’t allow cash to be the primary motivator behind the content that you produce for your website. If your primary objective is to create great content aimed at benefiting visitors to your site, then placing an affiliate link within the content to a helpful resource makes sense (and can be very profitable). The bottom line is that you should always place a high premium on a great user experience and that starts with writing tremendous content.
Other Great Places to Include Your Affiliate Links
I also place affiliate links within the products that I sell online. This gives me an additional source of income coming from my products. In order to take advantage of this tip you will need to create your own products to giveaway or sale.
However, if you have an existing product or are planning to launch a product, consider adding affiliate links within the product where it makes sense. Again, this gives you the opportunity to produce even more income from your product.
Affiliate Links Can Also Be Included Physical Products
This is a key tip that many people fail to execute, but electronic products are not the only place where you can place an affiliate link. You can include affiliate links in physical products and while talking live to an audience.
The easiest way to execute this strategy is to purchase an easy to remember domain name that will forward visitors to your affiliate link. This will increase the odds that someone reading a physical book or listening to you discuss a product will use your affiliate link when purchasing the recommended product.
Some Final Considerations
Constant testing will earn you more money. Make sure that you always test everything that you try out on your site in order to establish the effectiveness. How else will you be able to gauge what is working and what is not working?
When reviewing the analytics information from your testing, you will need to quickly get rid of what doesn’t work and replace it with something that is generating more revenue. I currently use a plugin called Pretty Link (free version) to track my affiliate links. The premium version offers a few features that are neat, but I haven’t needed them so far.
It is very important for you to always track your affiliate links. You need to know how many people are clicking through each particular affiliate link and how many of those will ultimately end up making a purchase. When you know what is working and what is not, it becomes much easier for you to increase your income from your efforts.
I didn’t discuss pay per click (PPC) affiliate marketing strategies for a very specific reason. I don’t use this strategy in my business. I’ve seen some people make good money with it, but if you don’t know what you’re doing you can lose a lot of your hard earned money very quickly. I think the strategy is too risky and it’s not something that I recommend for beginners. Over a period of time, as you implement as many of the strategies in this article, you will begin to see an increase in your affiliate income streams.