How to Start Affiliate Marketing
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To start affiliate marketing, follow the 12 steps given below. The steps described in this guide are: have the right mindset, choose a niche & then platform, plan the business, create content, promote products, optimize the site, bring traffic, generate sales, get commission, track & analyze data, and at last how to become a successful affiliate marketer.

Before moving to the first step, if you haven’t read the comprehensive guide on affiliate marketing, which helps you to clear the concepts, do it now.

Step 1: Get Yourself Ready

Thousands of people start affiliate sites each day. However, only 10% of them become successful affiliate marketers.

Before starting affiliate marketing, it’s important to have the right mindset. In this section, we’ll discuss the right expectations you should have, the risk involved, and the pre-requirements of affiliate marketing.

Expectations

You must have expected a lot from affiliate marketing. Take a piece of paper and write down everything you expect.

A few expectations most people have before starting affiliate marketing are;

  • Make a passive income
  • Get rich quickly
  • Earn a living so that you can leave your job
  • Become popular on the internet
  • Get a freedom
  • Earn a lot of money without working hard

Your expectations are your motivations. So, it’s important to have them. However, expecting too much makes you quit too soon. Keep reading and you’ll know which of your expectation will become true and which won’t.

The risk involved

Like a lot of businesses, affiliate marketing has a lot of risks involved. There’s a huge failure rate. 9 out of 10 people fail to make a living from it. You should have another plan for what you’ll do if you fail.

On average, for a new affiliate marketer, it may take at least a year to make the first income. Most people fail because they don’t have enough patience. They can’t wait so long. They come in this field to make a passive income, but, initially, it takes more work and time than a job to make a few bucks, which is intolerable for most people.

The reality

It takes a lot of work and patience to become a successful affiliate marketer. 90% of newbies fail in their first project. But, on the journey, you’ll learn a lot of things. So, if you apply all your knowledge to a new affiliate marketing business, the chances of success are higher.

Affiliate marketing statistics show that only 12% of all successful affiliate marketers make more than $75K a year. The rest make less than that, which means affiliate marketing is not a get-rich-quick scheme.

You’ll have to work more than 10 hours a day for a few years to actually get yourself in that 12%.

You need to commit yourself to the below points before starting affiliate marketing.

  • I’ll work for free for a year
  • I’ll do whatever it takes to grow my business
  • I’m ready to invest some money into my affiliate marketing business
  • I’ll not quit until I succeed
  • I’m ready to work 10 hours a day for a few years
  • I’ll keep learning and implementing new things

Pre-requirements

To start affiliate marketing you need the following things.

  • A PC
  • Internet connection
  • At least $20 to start an affiliate site
  • Basic affiliate marketing skills
  • The right kind of mindset as discussed above

That’s all you need to get started with affiliate marketing. Your skills will get better with time. You need to keep learning new things and take action on what you learn. Affiliate marketing is a long-term process.

Recommended Articles

Before reading further, check out the below articles to learn the basic concepts that are super important for you to know before starting affiliate marketing.


Step 2: Choose an Affiliate Marketing Niche

The next step to start affiliate marketing is to choose a niche. It’s very important to select the correct one. In brick and mortar business we talk about business ideas, while in affiliate marketing we talk about niches.

Assume that you put the same effort and time into two different niches. You may earn ten times more in one than the other. The difference in earning comes from the niche you’ve chosen.

Let’s see how you can choose the best affiliate marketing niche for you.

Niche ideas

You can create an affiliate marketing business in almost any niche you can think of because there are always some affiliate programs for almost every industry in the world. 81% of all online businesses have an affiliate program.

A few niche ideas are given below.

  • Computer: PC, Mac, Android, iPhone, Artificial intelligence
  • Programming: web development, mobile development, coding, ethical hacking
  • Health & fitness: weight loss, nutrition, exercise, personal hygiene, grooming, personal development, mental health
  • Gadgets, accessories, tools
  • Fashion Industry (it has the highest number of affiliate programs)
  • Business: Marketing, accounting, startup, entrepreneurship, investing, finance, budgeting
  • Cars, motorbikes, bicycles
  • Kitchen related stuff
  • Lifestyle, travel
  • Digital marketing: SEO, email, content, video, etc.
  • Online stuff: make money online, blogging, WordPress, web hosting
  • Entertainment
  • Home and garden
  • Parenting
  • Software
  • Sports
  • Languages
  • Skills such as graphic designing, video editing, photography, writing, etc.

Of course, there’s a lot more out there that you can choose as your affiliate marketing niche. The list is not even 1% of what’s available, however, these are popular ones. You should give yourself time to brainstorm ideas.

After gathering a few niche ideas, you need to choose one based on your interest and the business value.

Finding your interest

If you have an interest in something, you can choose that as your affiliate marketing niche. But, if you don’t like anything particular, you can go through the list and choose which interests you the most.

Usually, we’re interested in things that we do outside of our profession, in our leisure time. If you’ve chosen your passion as your profession, then it’s perfect to choose your affiliate marketing niche. Otherwise, note down the things you like to do in your leisure time and weekends, as well as the things you search more often on the internet.

It’s very important to choose something you’re interested in. Otherwise, you might quit too soon as you’ll find it boring to research and create content for something you don’t like.

The business value

Now, find the business value of the niche you’re interested in. A good way to find the business value is to make a list of a few products related to the topic. For example, if you like android, you can promote products such as cell phones & related accessories, apps, etc. If you find it hard to think of any products, it’s not advisable to opt for that niche.

Another way to find business value is to search a few related terms on Google. If you notice ads on the search results, the niche/topic surely has business value, which is why people are bidding on those terms.

Current market condition

It’s time to analyze the current market condition of the niche. If you’ve chosen android as your niche, search these terms on Google: best android phones, best headphones for android, top VPN for android, etc.

All the websites/brands that come in search results are your competitors. Open their websites and check out how they are doing, read a few blog posts and think about how they can improve their content. Doing this helps you to find out the gaps and make a unique affiliate site.

Narrowing down the niche

Suppose you’ve chosen “business” as your niche. As you know it is a very broad topic. Under this topic, we have marketing, accounting, finance, entrepreneurship, etc.; under marketing, we have digital and traditional; under digital we have SEO, email, social media, content, affiliate, etc.; under SEO, we have on-page, off-page, technical; and so on.

A big affiliate marketing mistake newbies do is to choose “business” as their niche. Instead, you should choose a very narrow topic such as “on-page SEO” in context to the above example. Later, when your business grows, you can expand the niche. But, when you’re just starting, choose a very narrow niche called microniche.


Step 3: Choose an Affiliate Marketing Platform

To start affiliate marketing, you need to choose a platform. You can do affiliate marketing in a lot of ways. Check out the types of affiliate marketing to get an idea. Below, the most popular affiliate marketing platforms are described.

Start Blog Affiliate Marketing

You can become an affiliate marketer by monetizing your blog through affiliate links. For that, you need to start a blog and create content for affiliate marketing within the niche you’ve selected.

How you can monetize a blog with affiliate marketing is given in the later section of this guide so keep reading.

Blogging is the most popular and profitable way to do affiliate marketing. In the long term, you can even create your own products and sell them through your blog.

However, it’s time-consuming and takes a lot of effort to be a successful affiliate marketer through this method.

If you like to write, blog affiliate marketing is best for you.

Start Video Affiliate Marketing

Video affiliate marketing is for those who like to face the camera and have good presentation skills. You can do it on YouTube as it is the world’s largest video streaming platform.

Please, check out this complete guide on YouTube affiliate marketing to get started.

It is more fun to do than blogging and takes less time to see results. If you’re passionate, you can easily make a living from it. However, the growth and expandability are limited compared to a website/blog.

Others

You can also start affiliate marketing on social media or through podcasts or email. If you have a large number of followers on social media you can promote affiliate products to your followers and earn money.

An email list is build using a blog. You need to have blog readers collect their email addresses. Later, you can promote your affiliate products to your email subscribers.

Podcasting is a good way to promote affiliate products. You can start it with a blog.


Step 4: Plan the Affiliate Marketing Business

After creating an affiliate site or a YouTube channel, you need to make a written plan for your affiliate marketing business.

You don’t need to write a formal plan. But, there are a few things that you need to plan before doing affiliate marketing. You’ll use it as a framework. It is supposed to keep you on the right track and make you a successful affiliate marketer.

Problems you’re solving

There are so many affiliate sites out there in almost every niche. Why do people need another site on a similar topic? What are the users’ problems your competitors are failed to solve? What are the additional benefits you’re providing to the users? These are a few questions you need to answer to start affiliate marketing.

Search the topic you’ve chosen and some related terms on Google. Open a few websites and check them. How they are providing value to their users? Find out what’s there that they can improve.

Competition

Your competitors are those that rank on the first page of Google for the topic/niche and related terms that you’ve chosen for affiliate marketing. For instance, if you’ve chosen graphic designing as your niche, the related terms would be: best tools for graphic designing, how to design a custom image for a website, etc.

Find out how big and authoritative your competitors are and how many blog posts they’ve published. To find the number of blog posts a website has published you can check its sitemap. Go to https://example.com/sitemap.xml. Replace “example” with your competitor’s domain name.

If most of your competitors haven’t published enough (more than 20) articles related to your niche, it will be easier for you to build authority.

Uniqueness

Uniqueness is very important to become a successful affiliate marketer. You need to keep your brand separate from your competitors. The way you design your affiliate site and write content makes a big difference.

A user should be able to differentiate your brand from others. A lot of beginners just copy and paste the content from other websites. This is a big mistake that’ll never let you succeed. You have to convince your users to buy a product so creating something similar that they have already explored doesn’t make any sense.

Moreover, your site needs to be visually appealing, so make a website that’s visually different from your competitors.

Content creation strategy

Content creation is described in detail in step 4 of this guide. You need to have a good content strategy. Here are a few questions you need to answer.

  • How you’re going to create content?
  • How will you make your content unique?
  • What do your competitors miss on their content?
  • What type of content will you create?
  • What are the terms you’ll write about for the next six months?
  • How are you going to format your content?

Step 4 will help you to form a good content strategy.

Content Promotion

Content promotion is described in detail in step 9. You need to have a plan for how you will promote your content.

Writing tons of blog posts won’t make you money if you have no one to read them. You need to bring traffic to your affiliate site. You can get visitors organically from search engines or by running ads.

For the consistent growth of your affiliate marketing business, you need a well-planned strategy for promotion.

Monetization

Affiliate marketing can be used to monetize a blog or a YouTube channel. An affiliate site must be optimized so that when visitors land on the site, they convert.

Convert doesn’t only refer to purchase, it also refers to generate a lead such as an email subscription.

You have to create a sales funnel to convert a visitor into paying customer. More about this is described in step 7.

Branding

The difference between promotion and branding is that promotion is done to acquire more customers while branding is done to increase the public awareness of a business.

You should use a consistent logo and web design for your website. You can do a lot of things for branding such as write guest posts, run ads, do partnership with others in your industry, get exposure to media, host programs, take part in non-profit activities, reach out to relevant people through email, etc.

Writing informational content (such as how-tos, tutorials, stats, studies, research, etc) helps to build a brand while writing content with business value (such as product reviews) helps to generate revenue for an affiliate marketing business.


Step 5: Create Affiliate Marketing Content

Once, you’ve set up an affiliate marketing site, you can start creating affiliate marketing content.

Remember, you have to create content only within the niche you’ve selected. For example, if you’ve selected “headphones”, write only about them. Creating random content is a big reason for failure.

Keyword research

Keywords are the terms people search on search engines such as Google. You should only write about the topics that people search on Google, which ensures that you can get traffic from search engines.

To find the terms people search on Google, you can use Google Keyword Planner. It’s a free tool. Sign up for this tool and search any keyword related to your industry. You’ll get hundreds of keyword ideas.

Initially, when you’re just starting you want to target long-tail keywords. These are the keywords that are more than 3 words long, have low search volume and low competition.

You can also use another free tool called Keywords Everywhere, for more keyword ideas.

The business value of the keywords

The next thing you want to check is the business value of the keywords you like to target. Keywords can be divided into two types: informational and business.

Informational keywords (such as how-tos- ex. how to play guitar, tutorials- ex. photoshop tutorials, data- ex. affiliate marketing statistics, etc) can be used to increase brand awareness of a business.

Whereas, business keywords (such as best products- ex. best headphones under $100, buy keywords- ex. buy an android phone, product reviews- ex. Samsung S21 review) can be used to generate affiliate sales.

Use both types of keywords equally. If you are writing 20 blog posts in the next 2 months, write 10 informational and 10 business posts.

Competition analysis

It is recommended that you target long keywords because they are generally less competitive.

To check the competition of a keyword you can use keyword research tools such as Moz, Semrush, Ahrefs, or Ubersuggest. They have a so-called keyword difficulty score (KD), which defines how competitive a keyword is. Keywords with KD less than 30 are comparatively easier to rank on Google.

Another thing you want to check using these tools is referring domains to the top-ranking pages for a keyword you want to target. Less than 10 referring domains for most of the top pages means the keyword will be easier to rank.

However, all these tools only give you the estimations. So, it is important to look at the quality of the top-ranking pages on Google. If there is a lot of high-quality content already ranking on Google, it will be harder for you to outrank them unless you create something much better.

Searcher’s intent

The most important thing to care about while creating affiliate marketing content is the searcher’s intent.

It refers to why a person searches a term on Google. While creating content you want to make sure if that’s what the users are actually looking for.

Search the keyword you’re targeting on Google. Visit a few pages. See what they all have in common, whether most of them are list posts, product reviews, or how-to content. You should create your content in a similar manner.

Unique factors

Uniqueness is very important when it comes to creating affiliate marketing content. You don’t want to create something that already exists.

A lot of people have already checked your competitors. If you are the same, they will just ignore you and stay with your competitors.

Even if you’re writing about generic topics, you should show a new point of view and a new style of writing.

Learn more about how to write content for affiliate marketing.


Step 6: Join Affiliate Programs

By joining affiliate programs you’re eligible to promote affiliate products. You can generate unique affiliate links for each product and add them to your content. If someone buys any of the products by visiting your affiliate link, you’ll get a commission.

The commission depends upon the product and the affiliate program. Digital products generally have higher commissions compared to physical ones.

Examples of affiliate networks

An affiliate program is set up by businesses who want to sell their products/services with the help of promoters. More than 81% of online businesses in the world have an affiliate program.

You don’t need to join each of them separately. You can join affiliate networks, where you can find a lot of affiliate programs.

The most popular affiliate networks are:

  • ShareAsale
  • Awin
  • Amazon associates
  • CJ Affiliate
  • Rakuten Marketing
  • ClickBank
  • Walmart Affiliates
  • eBay Partner Network
  • Avangate affiliate network
  • Peerfly
  • Skimlinks

Relevance & Quality

Only join affiliate programs that are relevant to your business. It doesn’t make sense to join health-related programs if you’re in marketing.

Moreover, you need to check the quality of the program. Check out how the landing pages are set up and the quality of the products.

Before joining an affiliate program, you want to check their terms & policies and the payment methods.

Commission

After quality, you also need to check the commission rate. Is it worth it to promote a product for the commission you’re getting? Answer this question before joining any affiliate program.

In the initial days, you should promote cheaper products. Because it’s hard to sell expensive products.

Competition

Just because an affiliate product is popular doesn’t mean it will be easier to sell. In fact, it will be harder as users form a perception that you’re just another affiliate marketer promoting an affiliate product.

That’s why join affiliate programs that are moderately known.


Step 7: Promote Affiliate Products

After joining a few affiliate programs, you can start promoting them. You have to generate unique affiliate links that you put in your content.

Product reviews

Product reviews have high business value for affiliate marketing. If someone is looking for a product review, they are deciding whether to buy the product.

Find a few products in your industry and write their reviews. Make the posts super comprehensive. Describe both the pros and cons. And leave your affiliate link so that the users can buy if they want.

Never introduce a product as good if it’s not. You can suggest alternatives and add their affiliate links too.

Relevance & quality of the product

Promoting products that can harm your users is very disastrous to your affiliate marketing business. You’ll lose the trust of your users if you do this.

Trust is the crux of selling. Nobody buys from someone who they don’t trust. So, the most important thing you should do is check the quality of the products. Don’t just promote for the sake of money because this doesn’t work in the long term.

Another key thing to remember is that don’t promote too many products in a single blog post, only promote that are relevant to the content.

Quality of the content

Content that provides users what they were expecting before visiting is known as quality content. That’s why to create quality content it’s important to understand what the users want.

You have to put yourself in the shoe of your targeted customers. If the quality of your content isn’t good, no matter what you do, you won’t be able to generate a single sale.


Step 8: Optimize the Affiliate Site

The next thing you have to do is optimize your affiliate site so that it can make more money for you.

There are a lot of things to optimize, some of which are described below.

User experience

User experience refers to how a user feels on your site. To give your users the best experience possible you can do the following things.

  • Use a simple and clean web design
  • Don’t add irritating ads and popups
  • Increase web page loading speed
  • Use bigger and easy to read fonts
  • Use visual elements such as infographics and videos
  • Make it easy to navigate around the website
  • Fix grammatical and spelling errors
  • Don’t use too many colors and animations
  • Provide support to your users through email, phone, or chat

Speed of the website

Your website needs to load faster. 32% of users bounce back from a site if the page load time increases from 1 second to 3 seconds.

Users get too much irritated if your site takes longer to load. You can use caching, lazy load, and smaller images to make your site faster. If you use WordPress, you get tons of plugins to optimize the images, HTML, CSS, and JavaScript of your site.

You won’t even get a chance to convince users to buy something if they don’t stay on your site. Nothing will work if it takes ages to load your site.

Search engine optimization

Search engine optimization (SEO) is a process of adjusting your site so that it can rank higher on search engines such as Google and Bing.

A few things you can do are given below.

  • Use keywords in your title, meta description, and URL
  • Add alt text to images
  • Create in-depth articles
  • Speed up your website
  • Use HTTPS instead of HTTP
  • Make content completely relevant to the keyword you’re targeting
  • Increase the topical authority of your website by creating content within a single niche
  • Promoting your content using white hat techniques
  • Increasing user experience

Security

How would you feel after spending two years setting up an affiliate site and creating awesome content only to find out that your site is hacked?

Obviously, the feeling isn’t good at all. Google reported that it removes 10K sites every day from its index due to security reasons.

To increase the security of your site you can do the following things.

  • For a WordPress site: use security plugins; keep plugins & themes up to date and don’t install non-popular ones; hide wp-login web page
  • Use strong passwords
  • Enable two-factor authentication
  • Hire security analysts for your website
  • Use anti-virus on your PC, and don’t install an unknown software. Most often passwords and other important data get stolen through PC.

Clean and simple

Simplicity is the key. You must have seen that most of the popular brands use simple web design. That’s because people don’t like websites full of popups, ads, unnecessary elements & links, animations, colors, etc.


Step 9: Bring Traffic to the Site

In this section of how to start an affiliate marketing guide you’ll learn the methods you can use to bring traffic to your affiliate site.

You won’t be able to make a single dollar if you can’t bring traffic to your site. Creating quality content and optimizing the site is important but nothing matters if there’s no one to read your content.

A few ways you can use to get visitors after starting an affiliate marketing business are briefly described below.

SEO

Google is the ideal traffic source for any affiliate marketing business. You can get highly targeted traffic from Google for free.

Google’s traffic is very important for any successful affiliate marketing business because it’s passive, consistent, free, and highly converting.

You can find tons of online tutorials to learn SEO.

Social media

Social media platforms such as Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, etc can be used to drive traffic to your affiliate site.

You can either run ads or get traffic organically. You need a large number of followers to get organic traffic from social media.

Moreover, YouTube and Pinterest are other great platforms to drive large traffic to an affiliate site. And, it’s much easier to get organic traffic from these two platforms. You should use at least one of these.

Email outreach

You can reach out to influencers by email and ask them to share your content on their social media channels. If you have high-quality content, a few of them may share it.

Moreover, you can reach out to people that are interested in the topic you’ve written. You can contact them on social media or by email. To find such people, search #yourtopic in social media. You’ll find tons of people discussing the topic.

A lot of them won’t reply, but a small percentage of them will. So, it’s worth it to try out this method. However, never spam or send multiple messages/emails to a person who doesn’t reply.

Google ads

When you search certain terms on Google, you find ads on top of the search result. You can run similar ads for your desired keywords.

Google ads are expensive but highly targeted. The chances for visitors to convert is higher than other types of ads.

You’re charged on the basis of pay per click. You can sign up to Google Adword to run such ads.

Google looks at two things while ranking web pages for ads. Those are the quality of the content and the bid amount. You may rank at the top if you have higher quality content even if you bid lower than your competitors.

Communities and forums

Niche forums are also great sources of traffic for an affiliate site. You can join a few forums in your industry and take part in the discussions. You can promote your affiliate site where you find relevance. To find forums in your industry, search “your-niche forums” on Google, for example, health and fitness forums.

Quora is the top question and answer site that you can use to drive traffic to your site. Moreover, Reddit is another top forum where you can join Sub-Reddits related to your industry and find opportunities to promote your brand.

Offline promotion

You can also promote your brand in the offline world. You can volunteer or participate in social activities. Promote your brand with your friends, colleagues, family members, and everyone you know. If your site is really worth talking about, word of mouth might work for you.

Partnership

Doing partnerships with other people in your industry also helps you to get traffic to your affiliate site.

You can contact your competitors & others in a similar niche to collaborate for creating eBooks or courses, organizing webinars, or exchanging interviews. As this is a win-win for both, there’s a greater chance that they accept your offer.

One thing you want to remember is that only contact those who are at your level. For instance, if you’re a beginner, find other beginners.

Search the terms related to your niche on Google, you’ll get tons of websites that you can contact for partnership.


Step 10: Generate Sales and Get Commissions

As you’ve seen, starting an affiliate site is easy. Generating sales is rather harder. In this step, you’ll learn some important topics that will help you to generate sales and earn money.

Getting your site ready for generating sales

Make sure your site complies with everything I’ve said earlier in step 8 such as user experience, security, SEO, etc.

Join affiliate programs and include affiliate links on your site. Now follow what’s told in this section and bring traffic to your affiliate site.

It is important to follow what’s told in this section for the growth of your affiliate marketing business in the long term.

Set up sales funnels

What are the chances of someone buying from a brand they hear the first time? In the case of affiliate marketing, it depends upon the type of blog post. For instance, if it’s a product review, the chances are higher whereas in the case of informational content the chances are next to zero because the intent was never to buy anything.

To transform someone from a visitor to a customer, you have to move them through the sales funnel. Instead of expecting them to buy from your brand for the first time they encounter your brand, you want to transform them into leads such as make them follow you, subscribe to your email list or push notification, or get a freebie. Later, you can re-target and move them towards a purchase.

Collect email addresses

Some of the benefits of having an email list are:

  • You can get traffic whenever you want
  • You are not dependent upon someone for traffic, you own it
  • Email conversion rate is very high
  • You can easily promote your new blog posts
  • You can easily transform an email subscriber into a paying customer

Some of the ways to collect email addresses are: giving freebies in exchange for an email address, content upgrades, using non-distracting popup & forms, etc.

Retargeting

It’s a common belief that when someone sees a brand seven times, there are higher chances that they will buy from that brand.

That’s why you can use social media, Google ads, and email marketing to re-target the users that have previously visited your site.

Get commissions

At last, after generating sales you can get a commission from merchants or affiliate networks. You should check the payments methods, minimum threshold, and commission rate while joining affiliate programs or networks.

Paypal, Payoneer, and direct deposit are the top three payment methods and the minimum payment threshold ranges from $20 to $100. Commission rates solely depend upon affiliate products.

Some of the affiliate networks/programs ask for tax information before releasing payments.


Step 11: Track and Analyze Data

Data helps you to make the right decisions. That’s why it’s very important to track data.

Visitors’ activity

Google Analytics is a free tool that you can install on your website to track visitors’ activity.

Later, you can use the data to improve your business. You’ll know what works and what doesn’t; what users’ like and what don’t. It will be a lot easier to improve your strategies.

Visitors’ data can help you to increase your revenue over time.

KPIs

Key performance indicators (KPIs) are the factors that you’ll use to determine how your business is performing.

For an affiliate marketing business, conversion rate, dwell time, and bounce rate are some important KPIs. You can track these factors and know how your efforts are performing.

By analyzing these factors you’ll be able to predict the effects of any changes in your strategies. This is why it’s important to track these factors. You can set up Google Analytics for this.

Conversion rate

Conversion rate is the percentage of total visitors that buy something or convert into lead.

Lead could be email subscription, social media following, sign up, download, etc. A higher conversion rate means more revenue.

You have to put effort to increase the conversion rate. A few things you can do are as follows:

  • Give freebies before asking for a purchase
  • Give good user experience
  • Provide customer support through email, phone, or chat
  • Provide money-back guarantee
  • Provide discount coupons
  • Write quality content
  • Promote only relevant products
  • Build trust and relationship before asking for a purchase

Bounce rate and Dwell time

Bounce rate is the percentage of website visitors that only visit one page. A higher bounce rate is a strong indication that you failed to engage users.

Dwell time is the average amount of time users spend on your website. You should try to increase the dwell time.

Below are some ways that you can follow to lower bounce rates and increase dwell time.

  • Interlinking- link out to other pages of your affiliate site with descriptive anchor text
  • Add footer and header navigation menu
  • Make website load faster, ideally within 3 seconds
  • Optimize your site for mobile devices
  • Don’t use too many popup and redirections
  • Use HTTPS as web browsers show “Not Secure” tag for websites using HTTP
  • Use visual elements such as videos and images

Replicating

Another thing you can do to improve your affiliate marketing business is to replicate what is performing best.

For that, you’ve to keep an eye on users’ activities and find out: which piece of content is engaging users, what makes users convert, which links users are clicking, which pages users are visiting, what they are searching on your site, etc. Then after you have to find the why by analyzing your website. And replicate what makes users engage and remove what makes users irritate.

You also need to change your strategies consistently based on users’ data. You can’t make strategies once and never touch them again. You have to consistently work to improve your site and grow your affiliate marketing business.


Step 12: Become a Successful Affiliate Marketer

Now, in this section of how to start affiliate marketing, we will see how you could become a successful affiliate marketer.

Starting an affiliate marketing business isn’t hard, however, becoming successful is. You have to take care of a lot of things to run a successful business. A few of those things are described briefly below.

Branding is important

Branding is so powerful that you can generate tons of sales through it. It is a long-term process, which helps to grow your business. You should find every opportunity possible to raise public awareness of your brand.

Running ads is one of the best ways for branding. It not only helps to generate sales but also helps to raise brand awareness. The other things you can do are guest blogging, partnerships, reach out to influencers, etc.

Focus on the quality of traffic rather than quantity

Getting tons of traffic seems very profitable. But, that’ not always the case. Some informational queries such as how-tos and tutorials have a lot of search demand, but, have very low business value. They do help you to increase brand awareness but you shouldn’t spend most of your time on such keywords.

Generally, informational keywords are harder to rank on Google. Even if you rank for such keywords, it’s harder to generate sales. So focus mostly on keywords that have business value as described in step 5.

Targeting keywords with business value bring quality traffic to your affiliate site and make money for you.

Build relationships & increase your network

It’s harder to grow an online business for someone who has no network. That’s why during the initial days of starting affiliate marketing focus on building a network.

Follow influencers on social media, leave comments in their posts and occasionally reach them out. But don’t ask for anything big right in your first outreach. Appreciate them for their contribution to the world and ask them for suggestions or quotations.

Moreover, build relations with the people at your level and your followers.

Focus on building trust

What makes someone choose a brand over others? A simple one-word answer is a trust. People choose the brand they trust even if the quality of the product is slightly compromising.

When a person searches for something on Google, say a product review, there are high chances that the person will click on the website that s/he knows and trusts.

Some affiliate marketers promote products based on commission rather than quality. This may generate instant money, but in the long run, the affiliate marketing business will be on the failure list.

Think long-term

A big mistake you should never do is promote products that are useless or harmful for users just because you’re getting a higher commission.

An affiliate marketing business can’t afford to lose the trust of the audience for the sake of a short-term profit.

Moreover, make plans and strategies for a longer period. Focus on the future of your business, not just the present.

Conclusion

In this guide, you must have learned a lot about starting an affiliate marketing business. There’s always more to learn. If you’re interested to learn more, visit the Buzref Blog where you can find a lot of free resources which will help you to be a successful affiliate marketer. Moreover, if you haven’t already joined the Buzref community, you should do it now. I share helpful tips and strategies with the community for more sales and growth.


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