Category Archives for Uncategorized

4 Signs You Will Fail as an Entrepreneur

Many people want to work for themselves and be entrepreneurs. I’ve written before on how to build businesses, on how to run them, and the mindset required to be successful. However, there are some people who simply aren’t cut out for this game. This is why half of all businesses fail within the first five years. It doesn’t always matter how much funding you have. Sometimes, what matters the most is how you run it. How do you know if you have what it takes? To be perfectly honest, you don’t. It’s not something you know until you try. How

How to Promote Your Ecommerce Store

The world of SEO is a strange and complicated world. Once you take the red pill, you find that the rabbit hole is much deeper than you ever imagined. Local SEO is much different from social media promotion. On page and off page are completely different worlds. What about doing SEO, promotion, and marketing for your ecommerce store? Do all of the same rules apply as they would for a brick and mortar store? How does it compare to a niche site? Sit tight. Today, I’m going to break down what you need for promoting your ecommerce store and what you don’t

How To Start A Blog: 4 Easy Steps

Learning how to start a blog is 10x easier than it was in 2006 – when Affilorama was created. If you’re not savvy with website creation – and hate HTML – you’re going to love this post. Check out our four steps on how to start a blog.  

 

Why you should start a blog

Before we jump into the meat of this post, it’s important you ask yourself:

“What is the goal of my blog?”

If you start a blog without a clear idea on what it’s going to be about, you’ll soon find yourself experiencing symptoms of what I like to call: writer’s block. 

This is when you’re sucked dry out of ideas to write and hit a mental wall. I can admit, everyone gets it once in a while. But having it too often can make you bored to death by your own blog. And eventually you’ll abandon it.

To avoid that being the case, here’s a couple reasons to start a blog:

To just write. We all have something we’re passionate about. A blog is a great way to express your ideas and opinions on a certain subject, with people who also share the same passion.

Establish yourself as an expert. What’s even better, is sharing your knowledge to help other people in your niche. This way, you’re able to express your passion with the wider community whilst teaching people about it too.

And my favorite – make money from home. You can monetize your blog and make it a second source of income – or even make it a full-time business.

Best of all, you can even do both: establish yourself as an expert + earn money whilst doing it. This is what we religiously teach at Affilorama and is the BEST way to make the most out of your blog (more on this later).

Overall, having a main goal is crucial before you start a blog. Take the time to really decide what that goal is and how you can achieve it through your blog.

When you have, you’re now ready to start a blog.

Step #1: Choose a domain

The first thing you’ll need is a domain for your website.

If you’re not sure what a domain is, it’s just the name of a site – like www.affilorama.com.

I always recommend choosing a name that says what your blog’s about in a few words.

Here’s a few examples:

www.traffictravis.com

www.salehoo.com

www.myfreelancepaycheck.com

In 3 words or less, these domains are able to tell the reader what the site’s about.

Avoid using scammy names, like www.mysiteisabouthowtotrainyourdogs.com. Try keeping it simple (2-3 words), you don’t want to give your visitor a mouthful to read before they even land on your site.

Once you have a name in mind, double check that it’s available to use. I recommend using a site like godaddy.com.

Sometimes you might be unlucky and see the name you want is unavailable. In that case:

  • Try a different extension. If .com isn’t available, you can use another extension like .net, .org, .co.uk.
  • Choose a different name. If you have another domain in mind, use that one.
  • Add dashes or smaller words. Maybe the domain Affilorama is taken, but it may be available if you add dash in between words e.g. Affilo-rama.com.

Now you’ve chosen an available domain – buy it. It’s usually around $10 every year to keep your domain. I use GoDaddy.com, but there are cheaper alternative sites – like namecheap.com.

Step #2: Choose a hosting service

The next step is to set up hosting for your site. This way when your blog is ready, it’ll be accessible to view on the internet.

Choosing a good hosting is important because of two things:

1. You don’t want your site having downtime. Even having a 99% uptime isn’t enough – that’s 7 hours and 12 minutes downtime.

2. You’re in this for the long-run. Think of it this way: you’re going to be blogging for years to come – why settle for low quality hosting just because it’s cheap? Having episodes of downtime and general poor hosting can be costly, especially if your site is monetized.

One of the most popular hosting options – and the one I use – is hostgator.com, though there are many alternatives.

For this post, we’ll be using Host Gator.

First step: go to www.hostgator.com. When you land on the page, click the “Get Started!” icon:

 

(Be aware that based on the time you’re reading this post, the home page may not look exactly like this. Don’t worry, it’s still the same procedure.)

It should then take you to a page where you’re asked choose a hosting plan.

Since you’re just getting started, I recommend using the hatchling plan. You can always upgrade later on, but for now, your main focus is just to get started.

Be prepared to fill in your name, address and email plus some billing information to register with Host Gator.

NOTE: At the bottom of the page, Host Gator will try to upsell you on additional services like professional emails and site lock monitoring. None of these are essential right now. But if you’d like to include any of them in your plan, feel free.

 

Once you’ve completed your registration, you should receive an email with your login details that look something like this:

 

Step #3: Build your website

Now you’ve got your domain and hosting in check, you’ll need a blogging platform to blog on.

“What is the best platform to use?”

Easy answer: WordPress.

Don’t believe me? Let the facts tell you:

  • WordPress runs 30% of the entire internet 
  • WordPress gets downloaded roughly 1 million times every two days 
  • Each month, 409+ million people view 19.6 billion pages 
  • 19,500,000 websites on the entire web use WordPress.  

And there’s a reason why popular sites like The New York Times, Forbes and People Magazine use WordPress:

  • It’s FREE
  • Easy to use
  • Always being updated
  • And there are hundreds of customizable designs and themes to choose

And what I love about WordPress is you can download and use it inside HostGator.

To do this, you need to:

1. Log in to Host Gator (with the login details you received in your email)

2. On your control panel, click “Build a New WordPress Site”.

3. You should then be taken to a screen where you can install or import WordPress. Fill in the details asked for in the tabs, then “Install”. Then on the next page, click “Install WordPress” on the next page.

4. Once loaded, your new WordPress login details should appear. Take note of them then login into WordPress.  

5. Take a minute to have a mini celebration. You’ve now created your first website!

Now it’s time to design it into something that “fits” your blog.

Step #4: Designing your blog

This is the fun bit. Now you’ve set the foundations to your first website, it’s time to turn this into your blog. This part of the post will show you how to change the look of your site.

It still shocks me how many remarkable FREE themes WordPress offers that you’d have to pay for on other blogging platforms.

Overall, WordPress has 2,000+ designed themes to choose from. So if you don’t get your theme right the first time, don’t worry. You have thousands more to pick.

Here’s how to change your theme:

When you log into WordPress, you should see a dashboard in front of you:

 

Click the “Appearance” tab on the sidebar, then select “Themes”.

 

On the “Themes” page, you’ll see a placeholder that says “Add New Theme”. Click on this and you’ll be directed to a page of several themes to choose from.

NOTE: I know a lot of people get overly obsessed with the design of their blog – instead of actually starting one. My advice: Choose one that catches your eye first time. Don’t waste too much time over choosing what theme to use for your blog, because you can always change it later on.

When you’ve found a theme, click “Install” then “Activate” it so it appears as your original theme.

How to write your first post

Obviously the most important step to a great blog is to write something.

In this part of the post I’ll show you how to write your first post for your blog.

To add a new post, click the “Posts” tab on your sidebar:

Then on the page you landed on, click “Add New” at the top.

The title of your post goes in the top field, and your content follows in the bigger field.

To add images to your post, simply click the “Add Media” icon above the content field to upload an image.

If you want to add links to your post, selected the words you want to link, then click on this small icon on the head bar.

You can always see how your post appears in live form by clicking “Preview” in the far-right hand corner.

Once you’ve written your first blog, you can choose to save it as a draft or post it publicly. If you want to post it public, hit “Publish” on the right of your screen (see below).

To see a preview of how it looks on your site, click “View Post”. It should be in underlined in blue just above the top field.

To add a display image, click “Set Featured Image” at the bottom right of the page – you can then upload an image from your media library or computer.

And BOOM – there’s your first post.

Here’s a couple more things you might want to get done when your first start a blog.

Insert Media

Click “Media” on the left-hand side of your dashboard, then “Add New”.

Then to upload a file, click “Select File” in the box that appears.

Remove ugly URLs

Having URLs that are way too long and messy, can’t set you up for bad rankings with search engines.

Ugly URL: htttp://www.affilorama.com/2018/07/how-to-start-a-blog-4-easy-steps

So it’s important to keep these as short as possible but clear at the same time.

To do this, go to “Settings” >> “Permalinks”. Then set to “Post Name” as shown below.

Now you’re off the ground, it’s time to get the ball rolling with your blog.

Like I said at the start, you can make anything out of your blog. But nothing beats sharing your passion and helping others whilst making an income doing it.

At Affilorama, we can show you exactly how to do this using the power of Affiliate Marketing. We’ll show you how to go from “blank blog” to “niche expert” site – and make a BIG income doing it.

Become a member of Affiliorama (it’s free), and we’ll take care of everything you need to get started. With 120+ FREE video lessons on Affiliate Marketing and several more resources to guide you block by block on your Affiliate journey – it’s no accident that Affilorama is the biggest affiliate community on the internet.

To get started now, click here to create an account.

 

 

99 Ways to Flood Your Website With Traffic by Mick Macro

This is one of the books I have found useful in my search for further traffic sources. There are several methods you won’t even have thought of and many are free traffic sources. Organic traffic once set up continues to grow over time by word of mouth and people passing on your link. It is therefore very important that your website and all your articles are well written, informative, appealing and relevant to the searches in your chosen niche.

It is a good idea to use both organic traffic and paid advertising to encourage searches. Paid traffic can be ppc, Facebook ads, solo ads or banner ads, as they bring quick returns especially useful when making tests.

I have pulled out a few items from the book as illustrations; method 21 is talking about free blog sites. There are many providers to choose from, weebly.com is an easy to use free website provider. Especially useful as you can upgrade your website to a paid version in the future to com, org, info, etc. Weebly.com is easy to use, there are great tutorials, plus a helpful chat line. It is also a highly ranked site so relatively easy to get onto page one of Google.

Method 25 explains the correct way to use Twitter to gain traffic (not the way most people use it)!

Method 22 Ask and answer sites like Yahoo Answers” and Ask.com where you can ask questions and leave answers to other peoples’ questions. They work a little like forum marketing.

Method 51 Stumbleupon, get your articles voted for and passed around. Don’t forget a good resource comment and link to your website.

There are ways to improve your website No 70, 56, 53, 43, 36, 35 to gain more traffic.

The above are just a few entries to show the versatility, some will appeal to you more than others but so many ideas to implement you will never wonder what to do, just when will you have the time!

So if you are an online marketer I hope you will find this little inexpensive book as helpful and full of ideas as I have. Or are you looking for the easiest route into the online world? If this is the case affiliate marketing is the simplest way to start online, if you work with the guidance of a coach. You can start earning commissions in a short time even if you are still learning the techniques.

You will have a great range of best-selling products provided for you and professionally written order pulling sales pages, plus up-to-date training. It is in your coaches interest to help you as they will be earning when you earn too. Affiliate marketing is a fun way to begin online with the security of knowing you are working to a tried and tested plan.

So whatever your online business we all need traffic. Without a ready supply of customers there is no business. Wishing you great success enjoy your time and location freedom with your laptop

3 Types of Commercial Loans for Small Businesses

Your business should be an ever-expanding venture. But only 53% of small businesses said they planned to grow in the year 2018. Why are so many businesses either stale or even failing? The answer to that is most likely multifactorial. But the number one factor is fear. Fear of failure, fear of trying new things, and fear of taking risks. One of those risks includes taking out a loan to expand their business. You might have taken out a loan when you started your business. It’s common and acceptable to do this. But taking out a loan to expand your

Affiliate Marketing for Beginners: How to Make Your First Affiliate Marketing Sale in 7 Steps

The lure of affiliate marketing is undeniable; who can resist passive income?

But to make that passive income happen, you have got to put in some work first. 

To succeed in affiliate marketing, there are a number of crucial steps you must take before you earn that first affiliate profits. And these steps are, well … not passive.

The good news is that if you’re determined to make this work and are willing to put in the time and effort, you’re already well on your way to affiliate marketing success.

All the work you put in is to help you make your first affiliate marketing sale. There is nothing like a first sale to motivate you and make you keep at it. 

So, what do you need to do to get started?

7 Steps to Earning Your First Affiliate Commission

We've broken down the process into seven steps for affiliate marketing beginners. Following this guide will set you on the right course and have you earning your first commission in no time.

1. Choose a Niche

Before you even begin building your first site, you’ll need to decide which niche you’re going to target.

Obviously, if you don't know what your site is about or who you're going to target with it, you can't really build a site around it…can you? 

If you’ve already figured this one out, way to go! This is undoubtedly one of the most difficult and overwhelming steps.

If you don't quite know what your niche is yet, here's some advice that you might find useful. 

Some key questions to ask yourself when determining your niche are:

  • What topics am I already passionate about?

It's much easier to work on something if you're passionate about it. Plus, when you have a passion, you're usually quite knowledgeable about it too, so that definitely helps. For example if you have a passion about about makeup, your niche of choice might be makeup related, too. 

  • Is there money in this niche?

While following your passion is definitely the recommended option, sometimes the possibility of making money in a profitable niche trumps passion. So, you might not necessarily know much about your niche, but if it's likely to make you money, you can always learn more about it, right? 

For example, KitchenFaucetDivas is clearly a site that was built for profit, not passion. Unless of course there is someone out there with a serious passion for kitchen faucets! 😉 

  • What topic could I see myself easily writing 25, 50, or 100 blog posts about?

The topic you choose must have enough depth that you can create a lot of content for it. This is important for building an authoritative site, for search engine optimization, and most importantly, for the end user. If you don't have enough content about a topic, you're not going to be taken very seriously as an authority on the topic and it's unlikely you can convince someone to make a purchase from you. 

MoneySavingExpert is a great example of a site with a topic for which you would have a never ending supply of content ideas. 

  • Is there room in this niche for another affiliate marketer?

There are several profitable niches that are also very popular among affiliate markets (e.g., weight loss). Before jumping on board with a hugely popular niche, make sure there's enough room for you. That is — will you be able to make money and compete with already established marketers? If not, keep looking. 

  • Is there enough interest in/demand for products in this niche?

The niche you choose might draw enough interest from your audience when it comes to reading and acquiring knowledge, but are they willing to buy relevant products too? Without consumer interest in products, your niche isn't going to make you much money. 

  • Are there affiliate programs available in this niche?

This is obviously a crucial factor to consider. You might come up with an idea for a niche you know a lot about, but are there affiliate programs for the niche? No affiliate program = no sales. Time to look for a different niche. 

Additional Resources for Choosing a Niche

Want to learn more about choosing a profitable niche? Here are some excellent resources we recommend for further reading:

  • Free Lesson: 7 Steps to Finding Profitable Affiliate Niches
  • From the Affilorama Community:
    • Do I Look for a Niche With Easy Keywords?
    • How to Look for Other Products in a Niche?

2. Research Affiliate Programs

Once you've decided on a niche, it’s time to find out what’s out there in terms of programs and products to promote. You've probably already done a bit of research for this while researching your niche — now you need to dig deeper. 

Choosing an affiliate program will take some work, but don’t be afraid to invest a significant amount of time into it because this is, of course, where your income will come from. Choosing the right program will make it well worth your while!

When choosing an affiliate program, keep these key points in mind:

  • What type of merchants use the program/ affiliate network? 

You want to make sure other similar sellers are also using the network, as this can help you gauge your likelihood of success with the particular program.

  • How much commission are you likely to make from the products?

Make sure you sign up for programs that are profitable and generate a sufficient return in on investment. Some tips:

  • If using ClickBank, products should have over a 50% commission (preferably 60%), and have a high gravity rating (meaning they’re in demand).
  • For CPA (cost-per-action) programs, commissions should be over $1, and products shouldn't be overly restrictive in how you can promote them.
  • For physical products, look for commissions over $40.
     
  • Do you want to be associated with the products and services?

The products and services you will be promoting to your audience must be relevant and good quality. Make sure you believe in them and know everything about them, because this will be crucial to you delivering the sales pitch to your audience. You need to build trust with your audience so make sure the products and services you choose to promote are trustworthy enough. 

Ads like the one below often lead to sketchy products — do you want to be associated with a product that promises results that may or may not be true?

  • What kind of support does the program provide?

Be sure to check what kind of customer support you can expect from your affiliate program once you have signed up. Do your research online and if possible, speak to other sellers using the program to get their thoughts. Can you speak to someone via phone or Skype or do you have to wait 72 hours for email responses? Be clear on this because trust me, you will need support at one point or another. 

Additional Resources to Find the Right Affiliate Program

We've given you a few quick tips to help you choose an affiliate program that is right for you. For more information, be sure to check out the following: 

  • Free Lesson: How to Find Affiliate Programs
  • Free Lesson: How to Choose an Affiliate Program
  • Free Lesson: 10 Alternatives to ClickBank
  • From Marketing Land: Choosing an Affiliate Network for Your Business

3. Build a Site

Steps 1 and 2 are all about research and figuring out what's possible and profitable. Now, it's time to start putting your research into action. 

Assuming you don’t already have a website built, this will be the next step. Fortunately, building a site isn’t as complicated or labor-intensive as it was in the past.

If you're a newbie to building sites, the easiest way to set up a site is by using WordPress. The WordPress CMS is very easy to use and while coding skills can come in handy, for the most part you will not require any tech knowledge to set up your site. 

You need to follow a few steps to have your site up and running:

  • Buy a domain.

Your domain is the address for your website (e.g., www.affilorama.com) so this is the first thing you will need to do when setting up your site. Considering there are millions of websites on the internet, it's possible that the domain name you want may already be taken by someone else. So make sure you have several options in mind. Be sure to read our advice on how to choose a good domain name. 

There are several places you can buy a domain, including our very own Affilorama Domain service. Other well-known options are: GoDaddy and NameCheap. 

  • Purchase and set up hosting. 

If your domain is your address, hosting is like the actual house within which your site will live. It's your own little slice of the internet — the place where all your website files live. Hosting is very affordable these days, so don't unnecessarily scrimp on costs. Go with a reputable, reliable provider because your affiliate marketing business depends on it. 

For more details on how to choose a reliable host, make sure to read our free lesson on What to Look for in a Hosting Provider. Some affordable and reliable hosting providers we recommend are GoDaddy, HostGator and BlueHost. 

If you purchase your domain and hosting from different companies, you will need to link the two together. Don't panic, it's a simple process. Check out our lesson: Linking your Domain with Your Hosting.

  • Install WordPress.

Once your hosting is set up, you need to install a content management system (CMS) for your site. We recommend WordPress because it is easy to use and a beginner (like you!) can quite quickly figure out how it works. Most good hosting providers will have a one-click install option for WordPress, which means it will only take you a couple of minutes and you will have WordPress installed on your site. 

  • Install your theme.

A WordPress theme provides all the styling of a site that you (and your audience) see on the front end. There are thousands of themes available, so choosing one might seem daunting at start. Our advice: go with something simple and easy to customize. You can always change it later. 

The AffiloTheme is a great option. Completely customizable, and built specifically for affiliate marketers, you can use this WordPress theme to bypass much of the initial learning curve other affiliate marketers will experience. You can also search for themes on a site like Theme Forest. 

  • Create content.

Finally, once your site is ready, it's time to create content for it. The content you create must be relevant to your niche but also interesting and engaging enough to keep your audience coming back. You should also ensure the site content is search engine-friendly. More details about content creation in Step 4. 

Additional Resources for Building Your Site

For more information on building your first affiliate marketing website, we recommend the following resources:

  • Free Lesson: Affiliate Website Building
  • Free Lesson: 7 Crucial Site Building Mistakes You Need to Fix
  • From the Affilorama Blog: How to Build an Affiliate Website using WordPress
  • From the Affilorama Community:
    • What is the best website builder for SEO 

    • How to Structure Micro Niche Websites?

4. Produce Excellent Content

Now that your site is set up and you’ve joined an affiliate program, you’re ready to begin perhaps the most time-consuming (but potentially rewarding) part of the affiliate business: Producing content.

This is where the overused but truer-than-ever phrase “content is king” comes into play.

Your goal for your site will be to establish it as an authority site in your niche, and the main way to do this is to consistently produce unique, high-quality content.

This could consist of:

  • Product reviews.

Your affiliate site model could be based off writing reviews about different products or services. This is a common model and if done well, can prove very useful in generating affiliate income.

For example, The Wire Cutter is focused on writing reviews of several different kinds of products and helping their readers make the best decision about the product they want to buy. After reading a review on their site, if the user clicks through to the product/service using the affiliate link, The Wire Cutter will earn a commission from. 

  • Blog posts that address common problems, questions or issues relevant to your target market.

Creating blog content is a very useful and effective way of consistently building content on a site. When creating blog posts, it's a good idea to do some keyword research to figure out what it is that your audience is interested in and searching for online. Also, be sure to research competitors, forums and social media to narrow down on topics for your blog. 

For example, Security Guard Training HQ has a very extensive blog on a variety of topics relevant for anyone interested in security guard training, jobs and more. 

  • Evergreen content.

If you are building a site that has the potential for information that will never age and remain useful for your audience, you have the opportunity to create what is known as evergreen content. It's important to carry out extensive keyword research before planning any evergreen content for a site like this, as your site could hugely benefit from the proper usage of keywords within such content. 

For example, the content on Super Weddings is useful whether you're organizing a wedding today or next year. All the content on the site is created accordingly. To make things easier for the audience, it is separated into categories to make it very convenient for the reader to find what they're looking for. This, of course, is also very good for SEO. 

  • Informational products.

Giving away a free informational product such as an e-book, an email series or a mini-course is a popular tactic many affiliate marketers use. Usually, your readers will have to provide their email addresses to receive the product from you. You can then use this to sell to them via email marketing. Additionally, an informational product can generate interest in the actual product you're trying to sell. If your product is popular enough and brings enough traffic to your site, you could also monetize the traffic in other ways, such as AdSense.

A good example is DatingMetrics, where you're tempted with a Free Texting Crash Course in exchange for your email. The real marketing will begin once the user has downloaded this course. 

The type of content you create for your website will largely depend on your niche, as certain types of content perform better in some niches than others.

Remember: Purchasing generic content is NOT an effective method to build your site. While it may be tempting to populate your site this way, in the long run it won’t help you to position yourself as an expert in your niche (and ultimately means less traffic and fewer sales).

Additional Resources for Creating Your Content

  • Free Lesson: Content Creation
  • From the Affilorama Blog: 3 Content Marketing Tips for the Busy Affiliate
  • From the Affilorama Community: 
    • Where Can I Learn How to Create Great Web Content?
    • Do I Post Articles in One Go or One at a Time?
    • What is the Current Google-Friendly Article Blueprint?

5. Build an Audience

Building an audience for your site will, in some ways, follow naturally once you start producing excellent content. An interested audience will not only bring you consistent traffic, but also result in consistent sales for you. 

So how do you start building an audience for a completely new site? Here are some ideas: 

  • Promote your content via social media.

The easiest and most common way to start building an audience for a website is via social media. Depending on your niche and industry, you can choose from Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest and several other niche and location-specific networks. Building up an engaged and interested following on social media is a great opportunity to build relationships and once you have their trust, promote your products and services to them. 

I'll use MoneySavingExpert.com as an example again. The site has over 154,000 likes on its Facebook page and it connects with the audience by sharing links to content but also asking money-saving/budgeting related questions. The highly engaged readers then visit the website, where they read content and no doubt make purchases.

  • Guest post on high-traffic blogs.

While your site is still new, it's a good idea to start capitalizing on someone else's audience. Continue focusing on building your own content, but also considering writing content for a few big, high-traffic blogs that are relevant for your niche. By writing content for a bigger site, you are able to get in front of another audience and showcase your expertise on a particular topic. This will eventually lead to more traffic to your site, as well. 

  • Build an email list.

Let no one tell you that email marketing is dead. An email list is crucial for every affiliate marketer. You can start building up your email list with a lead magnet (like the information products mentioned previously) or even just by encouraging your audience to sign up for your updates. You can then push your content to this audience via email and also direct them to your affiliate offers. Don't be sleazy about the sales, but if you build up enough trust with your email audience; when the time comes, they will not mind purchasing a product from you. 

  • Use basic SEO techniques to increase search engine traffic to your site.

Organic search remains an important source of traffic for any website, so it's important that you optimize your website for search engines as well. When creating your content, you must always do so keeping the reader in mind first, but don't forget to follow a few basic SEO principles as well.

Learn SEO yourself or hire a good SEO marketer to help you maximize on-page and off-page SEO opportunities for your site. If your site starts to appear in search results for terms relevant to your niche, it will be a huge boost towards building your audience (and your sales)!

  • Invest in paid advertising.

Many affiliate marketers use paid advertising to generate additional traffic to their site and drive more sales. Paid advertising on social media is often a good place to start, as these networks tend to be more affordable.You may also want to consider taking out inexpensive banner ads on small niche sites. Depending on your niche, Google AdWords could also be a good option to drive some paid traffic to your site.

Additional Resources for Building Your Audience

If you're interested in learning more about how to build an audience and start generating traffic for your site, check out the following resources:

  • Free Lessons:
    • Marketing Ideas
    • Search Engine Optimization 
    • Pay Per Click
  • From the Affilorama blog: How to Drive Organic Search Traffic to an Affiliate Site in No Time [Case Study]
  • From Blogging Tips: 30 Ways to Drive Traffic to Your Website
  • From the Affilorama Community:
    • How to Increase Traffic

6. Promote Affiliate Offers

Finally, the part we’ve all been waiting for!

This, my friends, is where things really kick into high gear. Many fly-by-night affiliates will jump right to this step and bypass steps 1–5 completely. And this is what will set you apart.

Once you’ve shown that you can offer something of value in your niche, it’s time to continue adding value by promoting products that will be useful and helpful for your audience.

You can promote your offers in a number of ways. It will depend on the type of site you've built and also what you're selling. Some ideas include:

  • Product reviews.

Write honest, real reviews about products. Build up trust with your audience, and remember that they rely on your opinion. Don't just point out all the positives of a product and gloss over the negatives. An honest opinion will be valued. Add compelling images and make mention of useful features, specifications and other details. 

Your product review can then link to the page (with your affiliate ID attached), where your audience can make a purchase if they're interested. If do, hooray! You've made your first sale. 

  • Banner ads.

You can put up banners on your site, to promote your affiliate offers. Most affiliate programs will usually provide their own creatives when you sign up for their offers. All you have to do is insert the banner on a highly trafficked page (your affiliate tracking is usually embedded within the code). Banner ads in the right locations can do a great job of driving sales.  

Below are some examples of banners that Templatic provides to its affiliates. 

  • In-text content links.

This is a very common way to promote offers. For example, you will often see a blog post with links to certain products or services. If the reader clicks through and makes a purchase, the blog owner will make a commission. These in-text links blend in with other content on your site and are a great way of promoting an offer within your content, without being over-the-top salesy with banners. 

  • Email promotions.

If you have built up an email list, you could also promote your affiliate offers via email promotions. Just make sure you build up a relationship with your audience first instead of going for the hard sell straightaway. The emails you send out must contain your affiliate links to products so when your audience click through. the sale is attributed to you. 

  • Discounts and giveaways. 

Many affiliate programs will often run promotions with good discounts or giveaways that might be attractive to your audience. For example, if you're an Amazon Associate and the site have a big Holiday Sale, it would be the perfect opportunity for you to promote discounts to your website visitors. This is a great way to promote your offers while also providing good value to your audience. 

When promoting affiliate offers, just make sure you are fully aware of all the terms and conditions attached to your affiliate program. Some programs can be strict about how they allow you to promote their products. For example, some may limit you to banner ads and links only, while others will allow you to use paid advertising, but won't allow email marketing. 

Also, make sure you have a disclaimer on your website that advises your audience that you may have links that promote affiliate offers. This is necessary for several affiliate programs and also a basic courtesy to your website visitors. In the U.S., the FTC mandates disclosure for affiliate marketers (and anyone issuing endorsements), as well.   

Additional Resources for Promoting Your Offers

  • Free Lesson: Writing Product Reviews
  • From the Affilorama Community: 
    • How Many Products to Promote in Each Website?
  • The FTC's Endorsement Guides: What People Are Asking

7. Rinse, Lather, and Repeat

Now that you're done with Steps 1 – 6, Step 7 is simply to keep doing what you're doing. Yes, seriously!

Your ongoing work as an affiliate marketer will be to repeat steps 4 – 6 on a continual basis. Building a site up to a point where it can make you consistent income takes a bit of work and you must be willing to constantly create, promote, market, innovate and of course, sell. 

Review of Key Points

It can feel overwhelming to do all the necessary work involved in setting up your site and building your reputation. But trust me, once you’ve made that first sale, all the hard work will be worth it!

To sum it all up, making your first affiliate commission requires a bit of work but if you break it all down and follow it step by step, it won't seem so overwhelming at all. Here's a quick recap of what you need to do:

  1. Choose your niche.
  2. Research different affiliate programs and products.
  3. Build a site.
  4. Produce excellent content.
  5. Build an audience.
  6. Promote your affiliate product(s).
  7. Repeat steps #4–7 on a continual basis!

 

As you can see, there is a tried-and-true strategy when it comes to affiliate marketing for beginners. Put in the work, and you’ll soon be reaping the rewards of your first sale. 

Do you feel overwhelmed about making that first affiliate sale? What’s holding you back from getting started? Let us know in the comments below and we'll be happy to help. 

 3 Simple Steps For Newbies To Start In Affiliate Marketing

How can you be an affiliate marketer in just 3 steps ?

Affiliate marketing is an arrangement between an online merchant and affiliate, in which the affiliate earns a commission for generating sales, leads and/or clicks for the merchant’s web site.

Affiliate marketing works in a win-win situation for the merchant and the affiliate. The merchant gains opportunities to advertise his products for free to a larger market which will increase his sales. The more hard-working affiliates he gets, the more sales he can expect. By getting affiliates to market his products and services, he is saving himself time, effort and money in looking for possible markets and customers. When a client clicks on the link in the affiliate website and purchases the product, recommends it to others who look for the same item or buys it again, this way the merchant leverage his chances of earning. On the other hand, the affiliate marketer benefits from each customer who clicks on the link in his website and who actually purchases the product or avails of the service provided by the merchant. Usually the affiliate gets commission per sale, which can be fixed percentage or fixed amount. The best is that it won’t cost a single dime to join an affiliate program.

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If you want to be an affiliate marketer and make money out of the Internet, you may follow these three most basic steps to start your effective affiliate marketing campaign.

Your first step is to identify a particular niche you are interested in or passionate about so you won’t be bored and forced to develop your affiliate web site later on. Focusing on a specific area you known well, it will help you bring out your best. Here are a few places you can research on – ClickBank Marketplace, AssociatePrograms.com, LinkShare.com, CJ.com etc

Secondly is to look for good paying merchants and high converting products .Make a list of good paying and high converting affiliate programs for your chosen niche and create a website. In choosing the products, you must also consider the support they are giving – Marketing materials may include articles, text links, banner ads, classified ads, reports, etc.

There are many affiliate networks and affiliate solution providers that can give you info on the most profitable products and best paying merchants. So be wise enough to choose the right affiliate program.

Now that you have decided which products to promote and the merchant you are supporting and have created your own web site with a domain name and reliable hosting, you are ready to promote. This is the toughest part, since it is through this that you would be able to increase traffic to the business website, sales and of course, profit. In affiliate marketing, it is possible to earn large sums of money in a short span of time if you use the right strategies and methods.

On how to promote the products would need a separate discussion. You must continue to educate yourself by reading books, courses or other articles online about the best and proven advertising techniques.

Remember, there is no quick path towards success. Affiliate marketing may seem very tempting due to numerous encouraging testimonies of merchants and affiliate marketers alike who have benefited from it, but it really involves in a great deal of hard work and persistence. You also need to be creative and flexible.

Most affiliate marketers don’t understand this, so when they don’t make sales, they quit, look for other programs and carry on the same mistake. In the end, they said that affiliate marketing is just one of those scams in the Internet. You can work your way to great success if you employ the right strategies in affiliate marketing. You can make money as an affiliate marketer if you willing to do what it takes.

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Why Paying For Traffic Is A Great Idea and Where To Focus ?

If you’re looking for a way to increase sales and traffic on your web site, you should consider paying for more traffic. You can find great success stories wherever you look, about e-stores making their millions on the net. Unfortunately there are hundreds of failures for every success.

Some think this is because of sheer luck. But this is not it at all. It takes a good sense of the business, and plenty of financial security and group work. More important is the desire to …

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If you’re looking for a way to increase sales and traffic on your web site, you should consider paying for more traffic. You can find great success stories wherever you look, about e-stores making their millions on the net. Unfortunately there are hundreds of failures for every success.

Some think this is because of sheer luck. But this is not it at all. It takes a good sense of the business, and plenty of financial security and group work. More important is the desire to succeed and put in plenty of work.

The main keyword to focus your business on is “movement”. Without patrons, you will not have anyone to sell your products to. The internet consists of walk-in patrons. The more movement you have, the more intervals will stumble across your site and make a purchase.

Search engines are the biggest revolution to discovering the needs of others on the internet. They have always been welcomed by the public because of the valuable service they supply. With this worldwide acceptance, many visitors come to them than ordinary sites. This is why companies pay to publicize on search engines.

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Search engines furnish millions of users with information daily. They supply links to sites that the consumer might have been looking for desperately. If your link comes up, you have a huge opportunity to cash in on the desperation of a consumer who just wants something right now.

Paying for advertisements is much like paying for movement. At first it might sound like a bad idea, but the potential payoffs are too great to ignore. If you are getting hits from search engines, you won’t go a single day without making a sale.

Generally you will be charged for every time your link gets clicked. This is called “pay per click”. Sometimes you will be charged per number of times your ad is shown when a keyword is searched for. You should always have good keyword content in your ad, otherwise you will never receive any hits.

The money you spend in your quest for traffic will have a positive outcome. You will get a huge influx of traffic to your site, which will result in much more sales. Paying for this traffic is a good concept.

By paying for your traffic, you are ensuring that you receive lots of traffic that is looking specifically for what your website is offering. By having a product to sell, you can enable a higher conversion and a higher rate of income.

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Where To Get The Traffic You Want ?

Not all traffic is the same. Getting a gazillion hits is great, but not if it is from random subjects and subjects. You want to focus on traffic that has a reasonable chance of converting.

Not all traffic is the same. Getting a gazillion hits is great, but not if it is from random subjects and subjects. You want to focus on traffic that has a reasonable chance of converting.

Where To Get The Traffic You Want ?

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Many sites make the mistake of trying to be all things to all people. It is far better to stick to a specific service or product than it is to offer limited options to customers. If you are selling hiking gear, be the best damn hiking gear site on the net and nothing else. This same problem arises when sites target traffic generation strategies.

The key to cost effective marketing is to get worthwhile web site traffic. At first blush, getting as much traffic as possible, regardless of how, sounds like a smart move. It is not. Doing so wastes your money, distracts you from what you should be doing and diverts your time from doing just that. If you are paying for traffic, you must find credible traffic sources.

Credible traffic is simply traffic from sources and locations that are relevant to your site. If you have looked into generating traffic, you have probably seen offers of 100,000 hits for $50. Yes, you will get 100,000 hits. Of course, the traffic is coming off of free lottery sites or the visitors are being paid to visit your site. This traffic is not credible and will not convert into revenues.

The best place to find credible web site traffic is Google and Overture. These are pay-per-click search engines that list your ads directly on their search results. This means you can specify the keyword phrases you want to be listed under, to wit, targeting your advertising to your market. You can also create filters that limit the ad placements to searches from certain geographic locations, such as the United States or Europe. This further targets your traffic by excluding clicks from some country which you can’t possibly do business with.

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You can also get credible traffic from web sites and traffic vendors. The sites handle it differently, but you can often buy ad space on their sites in the form of a banner. There are some credible services out there, but there are a lot more dubious ones. Personally, I do not use any of them, but it is your money.

Focusing your marketing is important if you want a good return on investment. You can get credible web site traffic from a lot of sources, but Google and Overture are the best.

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How to Increase Your Site Traffic and Succeed With Your Affiliate Marketing Programs ?

As an affiliate, your main objective is to sell the products and services offered by your partner merchants. Unless you can do this, you can never hope to make a significant amount of money with affiliate marketing programs.

As an affiliate, your main objective is to sell the products and services offered by your partner merchants. Unless you can do this, you can never hope to make a significant amount of money with affiliate marketing programs. So how do you boost sales? All things being equal, you will need to increase your site traffic before you can experience more sales. By the law of averages, the more people are aware of the products you are offering, the more products you will sell.

Here are a few tips that can help you boost your site traffic:

1. Optimize for the search engines. The most successful sites on the internet are the most visible ones. Now there are various ways to achieve increased visibility on the internet, but the foremost method is that of search engine optimization. The details are too technical to discuss here, but the purpose of search engine optimization (SEO) is to help your site achieve higher rankings on the search engines. If you have used a search engine, you will notice that any particular keyword search will return thousands, if not millions of results. Most people will not bother to browse through all those results; they will prefer to look into the sites already displayed. Statistically speaking, the sites listed on the first results page will garner the highest amount of traffic, putting those sites in a better position to make money.

2. Joining internet directories. While internet directories are no longer as widely used as search engines, some people do use them. It is important that you do not overlook the potential customers that these directories can bring to your site. To join an internet directory, you will have to submit your site for approval, and you will be categorized accordingly.

3. Provide fresh content. Your site must continually be updated if you expect your visitors to keep coming back. Your site must have useful content, as well as tools that will help your target audience. Make your site as easy to navigate as possible, and be sure that your links work the way that they should. There is nothing that frustrates people more than a “broken” website, and once your site has been labeled as such, chances are slim that many people will want to come back.

4. Build an online community. In other words, build relationships with your potential customers. Make your visitors feel welcome and appreciated, and they are likely to come back. Be interested in solving their problems and they will thank you with their business.
Making your affiliate marketing program work is really not that much different from operating a traditional business. The only way you can keep your customers is to treat them right. The Japanese have a saying: The customer is God. As long as you treat your customers with respect and exert effort in trying to meet their needs, you will find that they will be more than willing to help you with yours.

Affiliate Marketing and Requesting Customer Support

As a webmaster, you are bound to run into problems. Even though you have spent a good amount of time learning the affiliate marketing trade, sooner or later you will run into some challenges that you will need help to resolve. Areas such as e-mail services, affiliate marketing software, and online services are often particularly troublesome.

Unfortunately, getting help is not often easy, even from your web host. But there are ways to make the process simpler for both sides. Here are some questions that you might consider before you call your service provider:

Who are you? This is a common problem. Many people report their problems without providing their personal information, such as their username. Unless the support team knows who you are, how do you expect them to solve your problem?

What is the problem? Be specific. Identify which product or service is not working properly. Keep in mind that you are just one of your web host’s customers. Unless you can pinpoint the problem, chances are pretty slim that you will receive appropriate and timely help.

What software are you using? Your web host’s support team will need information on the software you are using. For instance, they will ask you what type of system you are using in your computer. It is a well-known fact that certain applications do not work well on certain systems. Be sure to give any relevant details about the services or applications that you use.

When did the problem start? Identifying the time you became aware of the problem is important. If you have recently made any changes to your system and the problem appeared soon after, it is quite likely that particular change is the cause. Don’t withhold information from the support team; every bit of knowledge is crucial to identifying the source of difficulty.

What have you tried to fix the problem? If you have attempted to fix the problem yourself, be sure to include an account of your attempts in your report. Letting the support team know what you’ve already done will help them save time, and also make a more accurate diagnosis of what’s wrong.

Have you kept it simple? For security purposes, some support systems do not allow HTML display. To avoid having your e-mail intercepted, it is best to send your messages in plain text format.

Remember to be polite. Keep in mind that the support team is composed of human beings – they certainly will not appreciate if you maltreat them. Never insult them; never use profanity. If you want your problem to be resolved, it is better to hold your peace and act civilly. Despite what you may think, you are just one of their customers — they reserve the right to discontinue their services to you whenever they like.

These pointers will not always get you the speedy service that you deserve, but they can certainly help.
Affiliate marketing is a difficult business enough without making enemies. By taking a little time to see things from your support team’s point of view, you can drastically improve the quality of service you get.

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