This post contains affiliate links, which means I may receive a small commission, at no cost to you, if you make a purchase through a link.
There are a lot of ways to make money online. However, you can’t try them all at once, as that will require too much time and effort from you. But you can start with what’s already known to be a successful path to make your first $1000 online. In this guide, you will learn everything about affiliate marketing for beginners.
You will enjoy the beauty of having a passive income a few months after you launch your affiliate marketing site. However, the steps you need to take are far from being passive. You’ll need to be hands-on to make sure your affiliate marketing journey starts the right way.
What Is Affiliate Marketing?
Affiliate Marketing is the process by which a retailer pays a commission to an external website for referral traffic or sales. As a publisher, you help promote a certain product, service, or a site through the content of your own blog. Depending on the end goal (a sale, a sign-up, or just a click), you will earn a commission for the actions that a customer makes when they follow your link. You don’t always need a blog, you can make money using Pinterest Affiliate Marketing, as well.
Affiliate Marketing For Beginners: The Steps to Follow
If you think that affiliate marketing is easy, you are right. It doesn’t require a lot from you to monetize your blog that way. However, the initial steps you take before making your first commission have to be well thought out. So, let’s go through them:
Step 1: Choose a Niche
As an affiliate marketing beginner, you may think every niche is profitable. Although it may be true, finding the most profitable one for YOU is why this step is important. There are unlimited niches out there, and some bloggers think of combining more than one. You can have a small niche site or a bigger, authority website. However, your final choice needs to have the following criteria:
- An audience that can be monetized,
- Not too much competition
- Enough products or services to promote
- Available affiliate programs to join
- And allows you to produce high-quality content on a frequent
Step 2: Find Affiliate Programs
The fastest way to make money with affiliate marketing is by joining one or more affiliate programs. If you can’t find a good affiliate program that offers a good commission for the sales, or there aren’t enough products to promote, you should consider a different niche. Usually, the larger your niche, the more affiliate programs you will be able to fit in, but that also means tougher competition with other marketers.
Step 3: Launch Your Blog
Once you have selected your niche and found enough programs to join, it is time to create your own blog. There are many platforms that allow you to easily create, design, and host your affiliate niche website. You can choose any of them, as long as it serves the purpose of the blog. Of course, you have to produce quality content for your blog. You can either do it yourself or hire a content writer to do it for you.
NOTE: This is the point of no return. You can still go back, find a different niche if you have doubts about the one you have chosen for now. Otherwise, you can’t change your mind after this step.
The majority of successful bloggers prefer using WordPress as a platform to share their content as it is easy to use and SEO friendly. If you choose to follow the same path, I recommend using SiteGround to host your blog.
You can read my article on why I switched to SiteGround Hosting right here as well as check out my free 5 day blogging and traffic primer course. I also have my premium, more advanced Blogging and Traffic Masterclass if you’re really serious. (Another way to make things go much faster is to get personal help of someone who has done it before. Another option is to have someone make your blog for you.)
Step 4: Grow Your Audience
Once your blog is launched, you will need to grow your audience. You can promote your blog using different methods and techniques. You can work on a long-term strategy by following Search Engine Optimization’s best practices while you use Pay-Per-Click Advertising to get the initial traffic to your website. You should consider growing your email list by offering free e-books and exclusive, subscriber-only content.
You can check out this article on how to make money sending emails.
Step 5: Apply to Affiliate Programs
Most respected and trusted affiliate programs have a vetting process by which they select their affiliate marketers. Of course, not everyone who applies gets accepted. That’s why you need to carefully read and follow the guidelines before joining the affiliate program. They usually have a page dedicated to that under “Become An Affiliate”.
Step 5: Promote Affiliate Products and Services
As soon as you become an affiliate member of a program, you can start promoting the product and/or services using different methods. An Amazon affiliate based website would usually write product reviews and adds a buy button which takes the customer to an Amazon product page. Others will use banner ads or call-to-actions within their website’s content to drive referral traffic to an email sign-up page, for example. You can use whichever technique that is allowed by the program and that is most natural to use to reach the end goal. If you are using affiliate links on your blog, here are 7 free ways to get the promotion right.
Step 6: Make Money
When the customer completes the purchase, signs up for the email newsletter, or clicks on the desired link, you will get the commission that the affiliate program offers. As your blog content will have a lot of these affiliate links and ads, you’ll make thousands upon thousands of dollars as your audience grows.
Bonus Step: Cleaning Your Blog Content
As your blog content pages grow from 0 on day 1 to a 100 by the third month, some of them will be just dead weight. You should update, improve, or completely delete any and all non-performing page on your website. If they have no traffic or don’t generate any commissions, they will only hurt how your website is viewed both by search engines as well as advertisers.
Affiliate marketing for beginners can be a little bit tough, but when you make your first commission, everything becomes easier. Following the steps outlined above, many new bloggers have successfully changed their lives and have secured a comfortable passive income.
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