By Holly Reisem Hanna
Affiliate marketing is a way that businesses can promote and advertise their services and products through a mutually beneficial partnership with a publisher, blogger, or marketer.
Affiliate marketers make their money by promoting products and services on their website or blog. Say for instance you have a blog on fashion trends, as an affiliate marketer you would place banner ads, blog posts, text links, reviews, social media updates, and/or send out newsletter promos for fashion related products and services free of charge. In return you would earn a commission on every product sale, or referral made from that affiliate link.
Affiliate marketing can be a great way to add some extra revenue to your website or blog, but it can also be a very lucrative career alone. There are some marketing gurus out there that make well over six figures, just by promoting other people’s products.
Here are some basic affiliate marketing tips to get you started:
- Choose topics and/or products that you know and love. If you are uncertain about promoting a certain product, ask the merchant for a free copy/sample to review. Remember these are your readers and you don’t want to lose them by promoting a lousy product – they trust you.
- Make your site pleasing to the eye and have pertinent and valuable content that relates to your topic of choice.
- Choose many products/merchants that are in the same niche. Stay away from products and services that you wouldn’t use yourself.
- Continue to build traffic to your site. Use social networking sites to help promote your site. The larger the audience that you have the more potential sales and leads that you can generate.
- Work with your affiliate merchant getting tips, strategies, and the latest affiliate marketing tools. They want you to be successful, if you’re successful, they are successful – remember this is a mutually beneficial partnership.
Where do you find affiliate companies to work with?
While you can look at your favorite brands and businesses websites to see if they have an affiliate program, your better bet is to Google the company you’re interested in working with, along with the keywords “affiliate program”. Doing this should shorten your search, as a large percentage of companies don’t run their own affiliate programs. Many companies choose to use a third-party platform administer their programs.
Here are just a few of my favorite affiliate platforms to work with.
FlexOffers is an affiliate marketing network, where publishers can gain access to millions of products and services that can be promoted through text links, banner ads, templates, and other applications. Payments are made via check or direct deposit, weekly and monthly, once you hit a $100 threshold. Some companies that are part of the FlexOffers family are Macy’s, Target, Best Buy, Starbucks, Barnes & Noble and many more. This platform is super easy to use and with all of the great companies, it’s easy to meet and exceed the payment threshold.
Panthera Network is one of my favorite affiliate platform that hosts work at home opportunities, coupon sites, survey sites, reward and sweepstake sites, as well as women’s products and more. Payments can be made via check, direct deposit, wire transfer, or PayPal on the 15th of the month for commissions made the past 30 days. The platform is very user friendly, and with the wide array of companies it is always easy to meet the monthly minimum threshold of $50.
Share A Sale is an affiliate network where bloggers and publishers can connect with thousands of big name brands, in fact there are over 2,500 merchants to connect with. Each of these companies has a different type of product that they are selling, and their ready to send money your way for each customer that you bring to them. Payments are made via check and direct deposit monthly, once you’ve reached a $100 threshold. Current merchants include Tiny Prints, Stella & Dot, Zulily, Craftsy, ModCloth, One Kings Lane, and thousands more. One of my favorite affiliate networks, easy to use, tons of great merchants to choose from, and I never have a problem meeting the monthly payment threshold.
Skimlinks is another automated affiliate platform. Bloggers can apply for approval into the network, once you’re approved simply paste a special code on to your site and you’re ready to go. Links will automatically be added to your content, and you’ll start making money from clicks. Refer other bloggers into the program and double your earnings.
Viglink is an easy way for bloggers and online publishers to automate their affiliate marketing. Simply sign up and paste the dedicated code that they give you on to your website. When these links are clicked on and your readers make a purchase, you’ll earn cash. You can earn even money money by adding Viglinks to your Facebook and Twitter updates or through your email account. Viglink works with companies like Amazon, Anthropologie, Avon… in fact they have over 30,000 companies that they are affiliated with. Refer other bloggers and friends to sign up for Viglink and make even more money.
Make sure to read our article on how to make more money with affiliate marketing.