How do You Affiliate Marketing: A Beginner’s Guide to Making Money Online With Your Website

how do you affiliate marketing

How do You Affiliate Marketing: Imagine all you needed to make money online was a website. You don’t have to create your own products or offer a service. Sounds good? Welcome to affiliate marketing.

Affiliate Marketing in Numbers

According to Statista, business spending on affiliate marketing hit $8.2 billion in the U.S. in 2022, and Influencer Marketing Hub estimates that the industry will continue to grow to $15.7 billion by 2024. So, starting today puts you in a prime position to take advantage of this growing industry.

What is Affiliate Marketing?

Affiliate marketing is when you promote another company’s product or service. When someone makes a purchase through your affiliate link, you earn a commission. These commissions can be a percentage of the sale price or a fixed amount.

Let’s illustrate this with an example: if you have an affiliate link for a book on Amazon and someone buys it for $15.45 (for the hardcover version), you’d earn $0.70 as the affiliate.

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Why Should You Consider Affiliate Marketing?

Here are two compelling reasons why you should consider affiliate marketing:

  1. Low-Cost and Low-Risk: Starting a business can be risky and expensive, with upfront costs for products, employees, equipment, rent, and more. With affiliate marketing, all you need is a website. If it doesn’t work out, you’ve only invested time and a small amount of money.
  2. Easy to Scale: Unlike a typical salesperson who sells products from a single company, as an affiliate marketer, you can promote products from various companies and earn commissions from all of them.

How Does Affiliate Marketing Work? (How do You Affiliate Marketing)

Upon joining an affiliate program, you receive a unique tracking link. This link allows the merchant to track if you’ve referred customers to them. Additionally, when people click on your link, a small file called a cookie is stored on their device. This cookie often has an expiry date, so you can earn a commission even if they make a purchase later.

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Here’s an example of how it works:

  1. Someone visits your post on the best winter jackets.
  2. They click the Amazon affiliate link for one of your recommendations.
  3. They leave to pick up their child from school.
  4. They return to Amazon the next day to check out the product again.
  5. They end up buying the recommended product and some ski gear.

Thanks to the affiliate cookie on their device, you earn a commission on both the recommended product and the ski gear.

How Much Money Can You Make as an Affiliate Marketer?

Most affiliate marketers earn less than $10,000 per year, according to a survey from Influencer Marketing Hub. However, approximately one in six (16.87%) makes $50,000 per year or more. High-earning affiliates, like Matt Giovanisci, who made $149,991 in affiliate commissions in 2021, have built their brand over years of hard work. While you may not earn significant sums right away, the success of others demonstrates that with hard work, time, and the right knowledge, you can potentially reach those levels.

Getting Started with Affiliate Marketing: Seven Simple Steps(How do You Affiliate Marketing)

Here are seven simple steps to kickstart your affiliate marketing journey:

Step 1: Choose Your Niche Your niche is the category you want to talk about and promote. To stand out in the crowded online world, it’s advisable to choose a specific niche. Instead of going for a broad category like food, opt for something narrower, such as grilling. This approach helps you build a more focused audience and may boost your search engine optimization (SEO) efforts. Consider your passions and what you’re good at when selecting a niche.

Step 2: Decide on a Content Platform(How do You Affiliate Marketing) You can engage in affiliate marketing on various platforms, including a website, YouTube, social media (e.g., Instagram, TikTok), newsletter, or podcast. Your choice will depend on your preferences and, at times, your niche’s preferences. Building a website and utilizing SEO to rank your content on Google is recommended. This approach helps you generate consistent, passive search traffic and, consequently, consistent clicks on affiliate links.

Step 3: Find Affiliate Programs to Join(How do You Affiliate Marketing) There are three main types of affiliate programs: high-paying, low-volume; low-paying, high-volume; and high-paying, high-volume. Your choice should align with your niche and expertise. Research potential programs through a Google search or by examining competitors’ affiliate sites. If a product you want to promote doesn’t have a public affiliate program, consider reaching out to the company to establish an affiliate relationship.

Step 4: Create High-Quality Content(How do You Affiliate Marketing) Creating high-quality content where your affiliate links naturally fit is essential for success. Don’t simply curate products from Amazon’s best sellers. Go the extra mile by testing and reviewing the products you’re promoting. Collaborating with experts to review your findings can also enhance your content’s credibility.

Step 5: Drive Traffic to Your Affiliate Site(How do You Affiliate Marketing) Once you’ve created great content, focus on driving traffic to your website. Consider three traffic strategies: paid traffic (using pay-per-click ads), SEO (optimizing your site to rank high in search engines), and building an email list to communicate with your audience.

Step 6: Get Clicks on Your Affiliate Links(How do You Affiliate Marketing) To encourage people to click on your affiliate links, consider factors like link placement, context, and the use of callouts such as buttons and tables. Ensure that your links are well-integrated into your content, providing value to your readers.

Step 7: Convert Clicks to Sales(How do You Affiliate Marketing) In affiliate marketing, two conversions must occur for you to make money: the click to the product page and the visitor’s purchase. While you control the first conversion, the second conversion, the actual purchase, is in the merchant’s hands. To increase your chances of success, explore programs with good conversion rates and take cues from public income reports.

Affiliate Marketing Tools(How do You Affiliate Marketing) Utilizing the right tools can streamline your affiliate marketing efforts. Some recommended tools include Ahrefs for SEO research, Rank Math for on-page SEO, Google Search Console for technical website improvements, Google Analytics for data analysis, and Thirsty Affiliates for managing and tracking your affiliate links.

FAQ: Frequently Asked Questions about Affiliate Marketing

  • What is EPC in affiliate marketing? EPC stands for earnings per click, indicating the average amount you earn each time someone clicks your affiliate links.
  • What is cookie duration in affiliate marketing? (How do You Affiliate Marketing)Cookie duration determines how long an affiliate program attributes purchases to your cookie. Typically set to 30 days, if a person makes a purchase within this period after clicking your affiliate link, you earn the commission.
  • How do you start affiliate marketing on Amazon? (How do You Affiliate Marketing)The principles outlined in this guide apply to Amazon affiliate marketing. You can find an in-depth guide on building an Amazon affiliate site for more information.
  • How do I do affiliate marketing without a website? You can engage in affiliate marketing without a website by using other platforms like Instagram, YouTube, and Twitter to drive clicks on your affiliate links.
  • How do you do high-ticket affiliate marketing? High-ticket affiliate marketing involves promoting products or services with substantial payouts. The guide linked provides insights into high-ticket affiliate marketing.

Final Thoughts (How do You Affiliate Marketing)

Affiliate marketing isn’t a get-rich-quick scheme, but by following these fundamental steps, you can build a website that generates a decent income over time. Focus on your first affiliate sale, set new goals as your site grows, and keep experimenting. Affiliate marketing takes time, dedication, and patience, but it can be a rewarding way to make money online with just a website.

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