Long before social media like Facebook, Instagram etc came into existence, we had blogs.
So many years later, and blogs are still a central part of the modern web experience. Blogs are especially prevalent in the marketing space, with 81% of B2B companies use blog as a content marketing tactic.
So how can we capitalize on the power of blogging? The answer lies in affiliate marketing. Today I’ll show you how to make use of affiliate marketing programs to help you make some money online with your blog!
What Is Affiliate Marketing?
In short, affiliate marketing is about promoting someone else’s product or services in exchange for an amount of commission when a deal goes through.
Let’s take Uber as an example. You are given a unique referral code when you sign up for an account. If someone joins Uber with your referral code, you will be rewarded.
That is affiliate marketing!
As you can see, that is something that we are probably already doing all the while – sharing deals and offers to our friends and relatives.
Of course, there is no way to generate passive income by merely sharing Uber referral codes. This is just an illustration.
We need a game plan!
There are many big companies like Amazon, Target, Clickbank that offer bloggers or anyone else to promote their products by assigning each of them a unique affiliate link.
As a blogger, you include those links in your blog post. When someone clicks on that link and makes a purchase, you’ll receive a commission.
Benefits of Becoming An Affiliate Marketer
Affiliate marketing is a type of performance-based marketing.
As you already know, the internet is open for business 24/7, 365 days a year. It does not sleep which means that you can literally still be making money while you sleep. Unlike brick and mortar shop which has operating hours, your blog never needs to close.
Most affiliate programs are free to join, and there is a vast array of products to choose from – health & wellness, fitness, make money online… There is an affiliate program for every niche you can think of!
Of course, it also means that you don’t have to create any products, someone else has already done the hard work of creating it. And you don’t have to make large investments into buying inventories, dealing with customer service, refunds and returns, and all the other headaches of being a shop owner.
Once you have created a review about a product, you can make money over and over again from that single post as many people will come to read it.
The more you write, the more chances of you getting ranked higher in the search engines. With a steady traffic flow to your blog, your commissions follow!
This is why I love affiliate marketing so much. In affiliate marketing, the sky is the limit!
4 Steps Guide To Monetize Your Blog Through Affiliate Marketing
1. Find Your Niche, Study Your Competitors
Many people struggle to decide on a niche. Choosing a niche can be tricky, If you settle on a niche that is too broad, you will end up with competition so high that it is hard for you to outrank your competitors.
Then again, if you find a niche with competition too low, it could also means that no one is interested in the subject and it is probably not a profitable niche.
Research Your Competitors
As you can see, the presence of competition isn’t necessarily a bad thing. However, you should do a thorough analysis of competing sites. Just type in your niche idea in search engine and logging the competing sites that show up on the first page.
Is there any opportunity for you to stand out in the crowd? Can you still outrank them for your keywords? Is there a way to differentiate yourself and create a unique offer?
Visit those blogs regularly, look up what kind of products they are promoting, and pay attention to any shortcomings that you can find – are they too profit oriented, only promote products that make them more money but barely useful? Look at the uses’ comments to see if they have missed anything important, and include those in your own blog.
2. Find Relevant Affiliate Program
In affiliate marketing, you should only recommend products that are a great fit for your niche.
For a start, here are a few places where you can find your affiliate deals:
Of course, you can also scout through your competitors’ site. This will give you a good idea of what products they are promoting, where they get their products from etc.
3. Strategise Your Write Up
When writing reviews, it is imperative to consider the needs of your audience. Identify the specific pain point that they are facing, and then begin to establish what kinds of products that can provide solutions.
Show your readers both the good side and the bad side (if any) of the product impartially, and assess the products from a user’s perspective, rather than the seller’s perspective. When the readers sense your intention of helping them, instead of selling them stuff, they are more likely to trust you and take your recommendation.
Too bad, many people choose to take the easy way out. They resolved to simply displaying banner ads everywhere on their blog – sidebar, header, in-between etc, without providing any value add. They expect their readers just somehow click through the banner and make a purchase on their own.
The truth is, research has shown that banner ads are no longer effective, and often get ignored – a phenomenon commonly known as banner blindness.
Banner blindness refers to a phenomenon whereby website users consciously or unconsciously ignore or skip banner advertisements or information present in a banner like fashion.
4. Insert Your Links, And Make Disclosure
There are a few ways to include your affiliate links in your write-up:
Contextual links are links embedded in the body of content. For example: How To Make Money Online Without Paying Anything
Products’ pictures with embedded affiliate links.
Large, attention-grabbing, and brightly coloured banners with embedded affiliate links.
Call To Action Button
A large, clickable button that guides users towards your goal conversion.
If you’re receiving any type of benefits for the post – be it in the form of commission, sponsored post, or discounted product, you should be honest about it. You can do so by including a disclosure like what I did here.
Where To Get Started
There is so much more to learn about affiliate marketing, what I am showing you here is merely the basic.
To find out more about how to write content that converts, where to find more products, how to use keyword research tools, you will need proper training in affiliate marketing.
Personally, I had been trying to do it on my own for years, I started with a food blog, it has good traffic but there were just no sales. I never know what went wrong until I decided to learn from the ground up.
Here, I have prepared for you a step-by-step guide to show you how easy it is to get started with your affiliate marketing website for free. By following the guide, you can find out how to get your 2 websites hosted and 10 free affiliate marketing lessons.
In A Nutshell…
The most exciting part of being an affiliate marketer is that you get to help people at the same time make money for yourself. It is an amazing journey to embark on, with great potential of becoming a passive income stream. However, it is by no mean a get rich quick option.
So what will it be for you?
Leave me a comment below and share with me your thoughts!