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As this is a Guide To Affiliate Marketing for the beginners, it’s best we start right at the beginning by first explaining the meaning of Affiliate.
An Affiliate is
“someone that is officially attached to a larger organisation”.
The Meaning of Affiliate Marketing
Now let’s define the meaning of Affiliate Marketing.
Affiliate Marketing is an arrangement whereby an online retail company pays a commission to an external webmaster (The Affiliate) for sales that are generated from its referrals.So in simple terms, a webmaster displays the retail companies goods on his website and if someone clicks on that item and eventually buys from the company, he receives a commission from the company for the sale.
Structure of Affiliate Marketing.
There are four main players that make up the structure of Affiliate Marketing.
First of all, we have the “Merchant” (the retail company)Then there is the “Network” (A Platform that allows website publishers to more easily find and participate in affiliate programs)Next, there is you the “Publisher” (otherwise known as ‘the affiliate’)And lastly the “Customer” (Without which there would be on business)
How it all got started…
Affiliate Marketing has been around since the beginning of the World Wide Web or as near as dam it.
In fact, it could be argued that a form of Affiliate marketing was being carried on far, far before the internet was even thought of.
Back in the ’50s and ’60s a fad in the form of “The Door to Door Salesman“ took off in a big way.
The salesman would knock on front doors and offer an array of goods that the householder could buy there and then, or even order for a later delivery, and the salesman would earn a commission for all goods sold.
But the online version as we now know it was started back in 1989 by a guy called William J Tobin.
William J Tobin was the founder and owner of a company called PC Flowers and Gifts and he got together with a network called Prodigy to offer his items for sale to the fast-growing internet users and would pay Prodigy a commission for any sales that they generated.
This resulted in a business that was turning over $6 million a year through the Prodigy Network.
What you need to get started
To get yourself up and running into Affiliate Marketing you need 3 main components and if you are reading this the chances are you already have 2.
An internet connection and a laptop/iPad, even a mobile phone would do the job but with a little more difficulty.
The third requirement is a Niche ( the subject/item you are going to promote).
As the first 2 requirements speak for themselves, we will concentrate on the third.
Whatever you choose to promote, it has got to be something that you have an interest in.
Something that you have a passion for and have quite a bit of knowledge about.
The reason I say this is because you are going to be writing a lot of information about that topic.
Choosing Your Niche
Let me say here and now that there are a million niches out there that are very profitable.
Every person in this wide, wide world has a passion or interest that is different from someone else, and with 4 billion people surfing the internet every single day in some form of the other, they are all searching for information on a chosen subject.
So what I am saying is, don’t go looking for something that you don’t know anything about but you think is going to make you instant money, it just won’t work.
Stick to your passion/interest and you will find it a whole lot easier to build out your website with valuable unique content.
Some Of The Most Profitable Niches.
There are some evergreen Niches that continue to be very popular, ie:
Health, Wealth, Relationships, Lifestyles.
But other very popular niches may include:
Pets, Sports, Green Issues, Food and Drink, Parenting.
Whatever category you are thinking of pursuing, all of the above are known as broad niches, meaning that there would be a vast amount of information pertaining to that particular niche.
Therefore you need to scale it down to a particular sub-niche.
For example, Pets would be broken down into your choice of Dogs or Cats or Parrots.
Get my drift?
The same with Food and Drink.
Your niche could be Baking or recipes, Wine or Coffee.
Your choice should be as narrow as possible to get the best opportunity of landing your site of the top pages of the search engines. (More on that later).
So with that in mind and for the purpose of this blog, let’s concentrate on a dog niche.
Creating a website.
This is going to be the easiest task you face.
Creating your website can be done in 4 simple steps and in a very reasonable time.
How about under 30 seconds?
Don’t believe me?
Watch this quick video to see how you can have a website created for you ready to add content in under 30 seconds.
By the way, this is a site builder that I use for all my websites as it is integrated with the platform that again I use for all my work.
So now you have the back office of your website created and all ready to go, that the easiest part, now for the hard part, and that is building it out with unique quality pages and posts.
Creating pages and posts
There is a difference between “Pages” and “Posts” and I will just take a second to explain what that difference is.
Posts, on the other hand, are content that you add to your site on a regular basis. These are going to be the main focus of your website and where your Affiliate links are going to be used.
So as I previously stated, for the purpose of this blog, I am going to use the Dog niche, but the following strategy can be used for absolutely any niche you choose.
The first piece of content you need to write is your about page, and this is going to consist of the reason you are building your website, your familiarity with dogs, how you have owned a dog since “back in the day”, and how you intend to fill your site with as much information as possible on all aspects of owning a dog, in the aim of helping others that need that valuable information.
Next, you are going to concentrate on your Posts, and these are going to be the bread and butter of your website, so they need to be Unique, Informative and Entertaining.
The purpose of a website is first and foremost to answer peoples problems.
If you want to be successful at Affiliate Marketing, you are going to have to answer the queries that surfers type into the search bars, and then offer an alternative by leading them to buy a book or a video or maybe a course on the subject in hand.
Finding Quality Content For Your Website.
Google is going to be your best friend here.
If you type into your search bar “How to…Dogs”, up will pop related searches to your query, but scroll down a little and you are going to find:
People also ask
What tricks can I teach my dog?
How do I make my dog behave?
Is it ever too late to start training a dog?
How do I train my dog to come when called?
When should I start teaching my puppy commands?
How can you train a dog not to bark?
How do you stop a dog from marking inside the house?
Are shock collars bad for dogs?
How do you get a dog to shut up?
Is it illegal to have a barking dog?
What does it mean when your dog barks at you?
Why do dogs hate dog whistles?
How do you teach a dog to kiss?
How do I teach my dog to play dead?
How do you toilet train a dog?
This is an accurate list of questions that people have typed into their search bars to get answers.
I have only opened the first 12 questions for this example but if you keep clicking on the last entry and then closing it, you are going to get even more queries.
These are an absolute gold mine for your website because people are already asking the question.
All you have to do is answer it.
Here is a quick video of how to get these results.
By definition, Affiliate Marketing is promoting another’s goods or services to gain a commission, but the hard part is finding those potential “customers” to be able to promote those goods to.
How are you going to achieve that?
When people want to get an answer to a certain query, they type into the search bar a word or better still a phrase that is going to give them the best answer to their question.
That is a “Keyword”.
The art is finding the most appropriate “Keyword” to give your content the best chance of appearing on the first page of SERPs (Search Engine Results Pages)’ and getting your work onto that first page is going to be your ultimate goal.
Then Google is going to give you the most relevant search results.
These are the best results pertaining to the search query that Google believes to be the most informative.
So your goal is to get your work “Ranking” on the first page of the search engines.
It’s worth remembering that the search engines exist because of CONTENT and if you can create quality content (that targets low competition keywords), you are going to be able to get your work ranking in the best possible way.
Finding Low Competition Keywords
The aim of competing with other websites for that coveted position on page one of the SERPs is to find Keywords that have as little competition as possible.
That means you are looking for Keywords that very few other webmasters are using to get their work “Ranked”.
So how do you do that?
You may or may not have heard the term Keyword Research, this is the task of whittling down the best Keyword to use for each piece of content that you create, and each post is going to target a brand new keyword.
There is a multitude of Keyword Research programs out there and really it is just choosing one that you feel comfortable with and is going to give you the best possible results in terms of your chances of getting your work ranked as high as possible.
Below shows the keyword “how to train a dog to stay” that I have entered into the Keyword Research program I use called Jaaxy.
I use this particular program because it is very powerful in giving all the information I need to find the best possible Keywords for my content.
As you can see the Average monthly searches for this keyword are 270 and the competing websites (QSR) are 67.
These are the sort of figures that you should be aiming for, anything that has over 100 searches a month and has less than 100 competing websites.
Try it out for yourself, see if you can come up with keywords that match those criteria.
So moving on, you have now found a great keyword that you believe is going to get your content ranked and hopefully ranked high enough to get onto page one.
That’s all well and good, but that great keyword is going to be as much use as a lead balloon if you don’t follow it up with unique, quality content.
The content that you produce for your website is going to be key to…
There are many ways you can go about attracting traffic to your website, and let’s be honest here, without visitors(traffic) to your website you really are wasting your time and effort.
By far the most cost-effective and cost-efficient way to generate traffic is through content.
Great content gets your work ranked on the search engines and there’s every chance that people are going to visit your site.
This is free traffic.
But it is only going to be free traffic if they actually click on your Headline within the SERPs.
Great headlines can and will generate traffic.
Make your headline enticing and one that surfers can’t help but click.
Use your keyword but then add a reason as to why they must read your post.
Your headline must be kept to 60 characters at most including spaces, so you may have to get creative when making up your headline.
Other ways of generating traffic are through Social Media and Paid Advertising but as a beginner, I would try to keep your costs to a minimum, so quality unique content should be the route to take.
Applying to Affiliate Companies
Most companies that have affiliate programs tend to pass their application process to an Affiliate Network.
The most popular affiliate networks include:
- www.cj.com (commission junction)
Do not try to apply to Affiliate Networks before you have 4/5 quality posts already published on your website.
Many companies within these Affiliate Networks have an application process before allowing you to promote their products, and if your site is brand new with very little content, chances are you are going to be rejected.
Finding a company that has an Affiliate program within your niche is a simple task.
Type your niche + Affiliate into the search bar and you are going to find a host of results that you can set about applying to.
Using your affiliate links on your website
Now that you have been lucky enough to be accepted by your chosen Affiliate Company, you are going to be assigned a unique ID code that will be incorporated into any item that you promote.
This ID code is going to tell the company that it was you that promoted their item and made a sale on their behalf.
This, in turn, will add any commission due, to your account, ready to be paid to your registered bank account.
Using any images or content from the companies website without your unique ID is going to result in no commission being paid, but also more damaging to you the fact that your account could be revoked for using their content illegally.
Whenever you promote an item from your Affiliates website ALWAYS use your Affiliate link.
Getting your message to the big wide world
Once you have completed your post, now is the time to let the whole wide world to enjoy your work.
Firstly get it onto the search engines by adding to your search engine consoles, whether it be Google, Bing or Yahoo.
Then tackle the social media platforms by adding your post to your Facebook account, Pinterest, and Twitter.
The more exposure you can give to your work the more chance of getting visitors to your site.
Finally, if you want to know how I gained the knowledge to build out my websites from knowing absolutely nothing about website building, then be my guest and take a look inside at no cost to you.
Here you will find a fully comprehensive training program by the best Affiliate Marketing Training program in the world
Please leave any questions or comments you may have in the comments section below and I will be only too pleased to communicate with you.