Affiliate Marketing is when a ‘blogger’ helps a buyer find the best information about a product, through his blogs or reviews. The blogger gets paid a commission on sales resulting from the help. The blogger is an affiliate of the seller and improves the seller’s audience reach. No extra cost is passed to the buyer.
The interesting facts about affiliate marketing.
Everyone is talking about affiliate marketing. People you know are doing it, enjoying it. They lock away for days at it. They whisper codes about ninja SEO, cookie life and QSI and keyword tools. Yes it is a bit mysterious at first.
Affiliate Marketing is relatively new online enterprise.
The primary function of affiliate marketing is to introduce new customers to an advertiser’s products. When the affiliate helps a new buyer to purchase the product, he gets a percentage of the sale price. Put simply, he earns a commission, just like a regular sales rep.
The difference between a regular sales methods and affiliate marketing is that everything is done online. Affiliate marketers have websites that focus on a niche or specialty. It is an information hub for people searching online for products or solutions to a question or problem.
Affiliates sales tracking and commission payments are fully automated through affiliate networks.
The work of an Affiliate marketer.
Affiliates publish articles, manuals, guides and illustrations on the internet. They review products and opportunities, which saves the buyer a lot of time and wasted money. They sometimes recommend products or services.
They use images and videos showing you how to do things. All of the information they produce is free to access online. They make a commission only after your purchase is approved.
Find out more about The Life And Times Of An Affiliate Marketer here.
Open all hours.
The internet never closes! It is like a shop that is open 24/7/365. No down time for public holidays or weekends or nights. For affiliate marketers with websites, this means that customers can buy through their websites from anywhere in the world , at any time of the day.
This is how passive income is earned, when you read about online businesses that ‘earn while you are asleep!’
Online shopping is here to stay.
Of course many people still do business in the regular bricks and mortar way, but they know that they cannot ignore the competitive online world forever.
Business marketing campaigns commonly use an array of media approaches to their advertising. As well as marketing staples of Print, Radio,TV, Video, Branding and live display, business owners are growing their online presence through websites.
Social media platforms like Twitter and Facebook are also an important part of the online marketing strategy.
A new kind of customer.
Many of today’s customers do not use the older style marketing channels. They use only the internet and social media for research, comparisons, news and purchases. They use mobile devices for ‘sharing the word’ to their circles of hundreds or thousands of friends.
The whole affiliate marketing process is led by the customer. They instigate the online searches and, of course, they decide when to purchase. They need reliable information, education and true facts before they spend a dollar.
Four players in the affiliate marketing system.
1 The Advertiser.
Advertisers have something to sell. A private person or a large company sells anything from coloring pencils to mining machinery, from pathology training courses to luxury boat insurance.
When the advertiser wants to broaden his customer base on the internet, and he is happy to pay commission, he can find publishers to promote his products on their own websites.
To help the publisher get new customers to his product, the advertiser can provide custom made ad banners, information text, links, images, memes and sometimes videos for the publisher to use.
When a publisher enters an agreement with an advertiser, he is known as an affiliate.
2.The Affiliate / Publisher.
The publisher owns a website (or many websites) about subjects or niches that he understands very well. The publisher will choose advertiser’s products closely related to his niche. He will often write articles or reviews about the product and the customer service.
He will create informative and helpful content using some of the advertiser’s material. He can point out the best deals and even warn customers about inferior products.
When the customer decides to purchase, a click on the ’buy now’ or ‘checkout’ button will redirect the customer to the advertiser’s order and payment pages.
A cookie will record which publisher sent the customer to the purchase. This is known as a conversion. The customer has converted from research mode to purchase mode, with the help of the publisher. A publisher gets paid in direct relation to conversions ie; his performance.
Today’s online shoppers want more than just a catalogue and cheapest price. They want to know what other people’s experiences are on many items. They need to rely and trust the people who evaluate products. They want the human touch of a personal experience. They want a place for discussion and feedback and complaints. They want to connect with like minds.
Online customers also like loyalty programs, discount coupon campaigns and email subscriptions. Email lists help them stay informed of new developments and are a great way for the publisher to keep in touch with his audience. A publisher’s will tailor his website to their preferences.
4. Affiliate Networks.
Networks are the ‘control panel’ of affiliate marketing. They co-ordinate all parties in the affiliate relationship.
They manage complex software systems that keep track of all purchasing activity. The sales, commissions and payment data is all logged by this central command agent. The system is run on ‘cookies’ which is like a massive memory bank that stores information about the activities of advertisers, the publishers and the customers.
Have you ever done an online search for say… a vacuum cleaner… or a car radio… and then noticed the little banner ads about vacuums or car radios keep appearing for a few days afterward? That is your cookies in action. Through the links you click on, cookies can record the time and date, the seller, the buyer and even that you just looked, didn’t buy. If affiliate links are set up, the cookies will track them, too.
The networks have a publisher’s bank details. Payment of the agreed percentage is made by direct deposit or by check.To simplify accounting, most affiliate networks make payments on a set day per month.
Each network has their own set of Terms and Conditions that advertisers and publishers need to read understand clearly.
Work from home with affiliate marketing.
The affiliate marketer is an entrepreneur by nature who often works alone. He can locate his work space to wherever he wants, because the internet allows great flexibility.
He’s always looking for new opportunities to grow his business, new companies to affiliate with. As success grows he can outsource to online piece workers.
It’s not Just Sell, Sell, Sell.
Most affiliates are so passionate about their niche, they also write inspiring and entertaining articles. He writes in depth, step by step instructions on how to complete a project. His audience loves this stuff because it is so useful.
He can test a theory and publish the findings. He can devise his own surveys to gauge a trend in his audience. He can interview other experts in his field or publish a guest post. He adds all of this great information onto his website and the readers keep coming back for more.
Affiliates have super powers, it’s true!
They know how to use the internet search engines to great advantage. They have techniques. Techniques like SEO (search engine optimisation) and keyword research. These are the powers that lift a promotion to front page rank on Google, Yahoo and Youtube.
High rank = high exposure = more sales = more commissions.
The best place to learn how to be an affiliate marketer is Wealthy Affiliate. Wealthy Affiliate is the world leader in affiliate marketing education and with over 800,000 members, they must be doing it right.
See why I have rated them as my #Top Recommended way to learn how to make money online.
Very lucrative opportunities also exist in the Business To Business affiliate arena. Many big businesses are still using ‘brochure’ style websites…which just sit quietly in the online background. They don’t rank and they don’t sell. 65% of big business still don’t have a responsive website.
Many large businesses are focussed on their internal running, of course, with very little attention paid to their websites. Affiliates know that a website is capable of so much more than a simple brochure can ever do. They can earn substantial commission from corporate work.
Earning potential of B2B marketing.
Mr. Affiliate updates a mining machinery company’s dusty dinosaur website. He targets a specific market, increases brand awareness, drives new qualified traffic to the business and generates extra income. He creates a vibrant website, topping the internet ranks for their industry. He solves a major pain for the business ie; get more sales.
The marketer and the business creates their own agreement, a Private Affiliate Program (PAP). If one piece of “Anvil Steel Manufacturing LLC” machinery parts costs $20,000.00 and you have a PAP of 10% commission on each new sale…well, how much effort will you put into this campaign? And then there’s the recurring income.
Local Marketing focuses on a customer base which is located within the nearby communities. Affiliate marketing skills are perfectly suited to Local Marketing. Again, the affiliate marketer understands how to rank on search engines and drive targeted traffic to the business website.
Affiliates can take the local plumber’s boring directory based website and turn it into the top ranking, accessible, modern face of a highly competitive business.
Marketers will often charge a flat fee to upgrade and improve a local business website.
How much does affiliate marketing pay?
Here is a few real examples of affiliate network listings and the percentages they pay. Anyone can join the networks and choose the products that suit your niche.
CJ by Conversant is an affiliate network for goods, services and educational products.
- Course Hero College is paying 10% USD per sale…product line – Educational Technology
- Zappos is paying 8% to 18% USD per sale…product line – Shoes
- Virgin Mobile flat $35.00USD per sale…product line – online/ wireless
- Tripadvisor Flat $100.00 per sale and $2.50 per lead…product line -Commerce Campaign Hotel
Clickbank is an affiliate network for downloadable digital products.
- Piano By Chord is paying 75% per sale…product line – Piano Lessons.
- The Venus Factor is paying 88% per sale…product line Female Weight Loss
- My Shed Plans is paying 75% per sale…product line Building Plans
- Anabolic Cooking is paying 75% per sale…product line – Muscle Building Cookbook
ShareASale is well established network for goods and services and digital products.
- Noble Brewer is paying 15% USD per sale…product line – Craft Beer Subscription Service
- Flowers For Everyone is paying 16% per sale…product line – Fresh Flowers
- Your Solar Quotes is paying 33% per sale…product line – Domestic Solar Power
- Dating Creatives is paying 40% per sale…product line – Dating Subscription
Each network have their own rules. Some charge to join, most don’t, but there are other fees. Read those T&C’s. You get the picture
Researching the affiliate networks can help you check if your niche is profitable. That is, if the products related to your niche are already doing well in the networks, it means that an audience already exists.
Sneaky tip 1 ;To find a good niche to work in…. you need an audience who is ‘starving’ for a product. Understand and relate to their ‘pain’ or ‘burning desire’. Offer a top solution to their ‘pain or desire’.
Sneaky tip 2 ; At Amazon, check that your niche related products are listed in the best sellers listing, therefore this is an active market.
Sneaky tip 3 ; To find good products to promote in your niche do a google search like this example “women’s shoes affiliate programs”. or “metal manufacturers affiliate programs”. Just type it in, you will be surprised how many ideas start flowing.
All listings show percentages, earnings per sale, upsell opportunities, refund rates and gravity. The gravity figure is the result of measuring sales performance, number of affiliates participating and refunds. Gravity of greater than 40 shows an active market.
Read more of my juicy tips on finding your perfect niche.
Never forget there are currently over 3 billion internet users around the world. Do you think you might be able to help some of them with a subject you have passion and knowledge about? Is there something you want to teach others? What do you want to share?
I’ve shown how all the partners work together in the Affiliate Marketing relationship. I’ve given you extremely useful research tips for finding a profitable niche and products that are lucrative.
You can see the main advantages to affiliate marketing are that it is a scalable business model with recurring income and it allows lifestyle flexibility.
Thinking Of A Career Change?
Did you just get passed over for the promotion you thought you had in the bag. Can’t they see that you are doing a great job and are so reliable and loyal (slavish even?). Wasn’t it you who organised that last big event and schmoozed the grumpy client into rebooking for next year?
Focus, dedication, professionalism….where is it getting you? Don’t even mention the overtime! Are the walls of the cubicle nation finally closing in?
It’s Time To Prioritise Your Life.
We all want a job with more flexibility. We want to enjoy our life and our families and what the heck, we want to enjoy ourselves, too! What is most important to you right now?
Maybe you want extra income so you can stay at home with your baby. You don’t want to hand her over for someone else to enjoy, while you go out and earn your twenty bucks an hour. You want to be there for her.
Maybe You Are More Like Me?
Your children are all grown up and fending happily for themselves. Now you have more time and flexibility in your life. Finally you can do some of those things you’ve always wanted to do…travel, learn, create, immerse, travel,write, sail, swim, travel, juggle!
“All men dream: but not equally. Those who dream by night in the dusty recesses of their minds wake up in the day to find it was vanity, but the dreamers of the day are dangerous men, for they may act their dreams with open eyes, to make it possible.”
― T.E. Lawrence, Seven Pillars of Wisdom: A Triumph
If you would like to learn much, much more click here now.
What part of your current job is most painful? How do you make it go away? Drop me a line below and tell me how a new career will solve some of your problems.
Go well from Janelle
Founder Of The Cashed Up Nomad “Earn Your Freedom Online”
Image Credits; Denise Chan, Mosaic Center, Caloundra Regional Gallery, Hong Kong Tourism