33 Super Affiliate Marketing Tips For Becoming Successful
Affiliate marketing is one of the best ways to make money with blogs and websites.
There's no need to create a product or offer a special service because you're already promoting and making money off of someone else's.
And that is what's great about it, you know.
You never need your own products.
But successfully making it in the affiliate marketing world is tough.
I mean, no one is just going to buy something you're promoting because you, a total stranger, says it's the shit. There's a lot more to it than that.
And in this post, I'm going to give you some pointers. Here are...
33 Super Affiliate Marketing Tips
1. Know Your (Target) Audience
You've probably been told this before, again and again and again.
But it's important. Which is why I've placed it at the top of this list.
Knowing who your audience is, the real-life human beings that visit and read your content, is one of the biggest factors to your blog's success.
You'll know exactly what their problems are.
You'll know exactly what type of content to create.
You'll know how much they're willing to spend.
Basically, you'll know what products to promote so you can generate sale after sale.
So the question is:
How do you learn who your audience is?
Tough question, isn't it?
Well, there are a number of things you can do to figure out who your audience is.
For instance, you could create a survey and email it to your subscribers.
I know you might not have a large enough list to conduct surveys, so I'll give you a few more ideas below:
There are other methods on how to learn about your audience.
A post that I recommend you read is this one from Content Marketing Institute.
2. Quality Content is a Must
Posting quality content on your site is definitely something that should be on the top of your list.
Content is how you'll drive traffic to your money pages.
Content is how you'll convert traffic into referrals and subscribers.
Basically, content will be the lifeblood of your website.You might asking:How do you create quality content?
First of all, quality content is aimed at your target audience. It's got to be relevant, right? Which is why #1 on this list is so important.
This means if your target audience are bloggers who are trying to grow their email lists, you'd create content that would help them grow their email lists. Right?
Quality content is also readable and scannable at the same time.To do this, you can't be writing as if you were writing a big time novel.
Your words have to be easy to understand. Like 5th grade kind of stuff.
Your text will have to be broken up with short paragraphs, high-quality images, bolded and italicized words, and even with ordered/unordered lists.
All this, and more, are the ingredients to readable and scannable web content.
If you'd like to learn how to create quality content, check out my guide here on AffiliMarketer.
3. Use the Product Review Post
The product review post is going to be a big part of your website and your affiliate marketing success.
Before making a purchase online, internet users typically jump on Google and search for something like "product name" review.
And why do you think they do that?
Because they want information, right? They want to know if the product they're interested in is legit.
So now the question is:
How do you create reviews that rank, get traffic, and make sales?
There are a couple different ways you can write up your reviews.
Number 1, you can do the usual product review where you show the reader everything about the product.
Or number 2, where you basically write up a tutorial or how-to of the product.
They're both effective. And they both take about the same amount of time to create.
Which ever one you decide to go with, here are a bunch of things to keep in mind:
4. Use the Product Comparison Post
The product comparison post is one of the best kinds for an affiliate, in terms of traffic and conversions.
The post type is a little niche. Meaning it doesn't cover a broad topic. It covers one certain type of product.
Xbox One controllers and not gaming controllers. WordPress SEO plugins and not WordPress plugins.
My favourite example of this is Blogging Wizard's post on the best social sharing plugins.
It is so good it has 2014 in its URL and people still love it in 2017.
5. Use the Recommended Tools/Resources Page
The Recommended Tools/Resources Page is probably one of the easiest pieces of website content you will ever create.
It's really just sharing all your favourite resources to your audience in one page.
Nearly every blog I follow has one.
6. Use the "What's Your Budget?" Guide
The WYB Guide is another easy one. In fact, it's so easy, you might not even feel like creating your own for your site.
So what is it exactly? you ask.
It's a simple roundup of products in several price range categories. For example, $50 to $99, $100 to $199, $200 to $299, and etc.
One main feature of the WYB Guide is the jump-link navigation.
7. Use the Affiliate Expert Roundup Post
You've seen them. Expert roundup posts. They're everywhere. Nearly every blog worth visiting has one.
Anyway, ERPs have one main focus. To tap into the experts' audience.
How does this happen? you ask.
The basic concept of an ERP, from the blogger's view, is to drive traffic and provide helpful content.
90% of the traffic, especially in the first few weeks, comes from the experts sharing the post to their followers and sometimes subscribers.
If you do the SEO correctly, you can eventually see some search traffic. So pro tip, target some great keywords.
So, what is an affiliate expert roundup post?
No, it isn't one where you feature a bunch of super affiliates.
It's where the topic is a certain product type. Here are a couple examples:
The creation process is just like any other ERP. Come up with a great question, email a bunch of your industry pros, and put it all into one blog post.
8. Use the Product Roundup Post
Like the expert roundup, the product roundup is a great traffic generator.
It's also similar to the product comparison post. The difference: the roundup covers a wider range of products.
Instead of social sharing plugins, you'd go with social media tools.
Instead of link building tools, you'd go with SEO tools.
And instead of SEO tools, you'd go with digital marketing tools.
Know what I'm saying? Broad.
9. Use Video in Your Content
It's 2017 and people are very much into video. Some more than others.
There are actually people out there that would exit a page because it's all text. Kind of messed up, I know. But it's for real. I've seen it. My brother is one of those people.
I'd especially recommend using video for your product reviews.
You can have a full review in text and images. And then embed a video version into the post.
That way, you'll have the best of both worlds. Everyone's happy.
10. Choose the Right Merchants and Affiliate Programs
Merchants and affiliate programs can sometimes be unreliable and unprofessional.
I'd say most are great, but there are a few bad apples out there.
So before you commit to an affiliate program, do your research.
If you don't, and end up losing all your commissions because the merchant is a shady ass company, it'll be on you.
11. Sidebar Ads and Banners Don't Always Work
In fact, they rarely work. Sidebar content doesn't get much action these days.
I mean...when was the last time you clicked on an ad on someone's sidebar?
They can get pretty distracting, too. Especially if you want your visitors to stay within the content area. Which is where 95% of your affiliate links are.
So maybe dumping your whole sidebar is a legitimate option. Maybe.
Here at AffiliMarketer, we'll be removing the sidebar on all our content pages. The only page you'll see the sidebar is on the blogroll.
12. Always Provide Proof that Products Work
If people sees firsthand that the product they're interested in actually works, they'll take out their credit cards in a heartbeat. It's that simple.
So, the next time you're writing an affiliate product promo, provide real-life proof. You will likely see some of the best conversion rate numbers you have ever seen.
13. Use Scarcity for an Increase in Sales and Conversions
What is scarcity? you ask. Basically, it's when a product or service becomes 10x more attractive to the customer because of its limitedness.
I'm sure you've bought something before because the marketing perfected the scarcity. It's a powerful tactic.
People hate missing out on great things, right?
Check out some scarcity examples:
Pro Tip: Consider getting yourself a copy of Thrive Ultimatum. It's the best scarcity marketing tool out there.
14. Promote Products in High Demand
Obviously, if people want the product it'll be 100x easier to sell and earn affiliate commissions.
So how would you know if a product is in high demand?
15. Promote Products That Solve Problems
The more helpful the product is, the easier it'll be to sell it and earn commish. It's that simple.
People love easy solutions to their problems. And easy solutions come from products because it solves problems without having to do much work yourself.
Keep this in mind the next time you're picking an affiliate product.
16. Promote High-Ticket Items Properly
The bigger the price tag, the easier it is to be attracted to it. From an affiliate standpoint, I mean.
If you let the money go to your head, it could really hurt your site. Even your own reputation.
If thousand-dollar products is all you promote, the people who can't afford (or who just don't want to spend that much money) won't ever come back to your site.
And what if you promote something that costs $2000 and is a complete waste of money? A scam, right? Your conversion rates would likely plummet.
So, here's my advice:
Don't get blinded by how much money you can make off a product.
If the product sucks, no matter the price, dump it.
17. Do NOT Promote Products You Would NOT Use
If you would never use it, don't ever promote it. It doesn't matter how big price, or how large the commission rate, promoting low-quality products to your precious audience is a deathwish.
So don't do it. Alright?
18. Recurring Commission Rates are the Bomb!
Do you know what commission rates are? They're the percentage you'd get if you make the sale.
Do you know what recurring commission rates are? They basically mean you'll can paid every time the customer keeps paying for the product.
Recurring commissions are usually monthly. Sometimes annually. Sometimes quarterly.
And the product is usually some sort of membership. Like web hosting.
So, when you're looking for a new product to promote on your site, consider one with recurring fees.
Pro Tip: Don't let this be your only reason for choosing affiliate products. Your recommended products should always help the reader in some way.
19. Use an Affiliate Link Tool
If you've been in affiliate marketing long enough, you've seen how ugly affiliate links are. They have these weird numbers, question marks, underscores, and what not after the forward slash.
Why are they so complicated? you ask.
Affiliate programs need to track everything. Clicks, conversation rates, and all that other analytical stuff.
And they do this by adding special codes to the link.
If everyone had the same link, it would be a nightmare trying figure out who did what. You know what I mean?
Another reason to use an affiliate link tool is you'll be able to see your click count. Which would help a lot when you're testing.
There are many other reasons. Sugar Rae shows you some of them in her post about cloaking affiliate links.
20. Always be Testing
We mentioned testing a minute ago. So why should you be doing it?
When you're into affiliate marketing, making money is the #1 goal. I don't what anyone else says, it's just true.
And since it's about the money, you will have to keep an eye on your conversion rates.
A low conversion rate can mean the product sucks OR the way you're marketing needs to be looked at.
That's why you need to test.
Psst! If you need help with marketing (in general), then I'd recommend feeding your brain with some of internet marketing's best articles.
Test your affiliate marketing methods. Test your affiliate products. Test your affiliate link placement.
And when you do enough testing, you'll have the data to start seeing what works and what doesn't.
Knowing this stuff can lead to a high conversion rate. Money, baby.
21. Always Prepare for Seasonal Trends and Holidays
This obviously does not apply to everybody. I mean, who the heck would get their buddy some eBook for Christmas, right?
But yeah. If you promote physical products, the holidays can mean a lot of cha-ching for you.
So when they're around the corner, consider doing something dedicated to that holiday.
Here are a couple examples:
22. Product Images + Affiliate Links = $$$
I'm sure you've heard it:
Images speak louder than words. OR...A picture speaks a thousand words.
When it comes to website content, they couldn't get any more true.
So since images get way more engagement than text, and you're likely to include product images in your reviews, adding your affiliate links within can increase your overall sales.
23. The World is Mobile, So Should You
Have you ever visited a website using your phone and it didn't adjust to your smaller screen?
It just looked exactly like it would on a desktop or laptop, right? Except it's 100x smaller and impossible to click or read anything.
When it comes to building successful (affiliate) websites, making sure your site is mobile-friendly is an absolute must.
According to a source, 50% of all internet users are mobile.
And since this is 2016 where the public is always glued to their phones, you'll have to get your website(s) to automatically adjust to smaller screens.
Is it hard to do? Heck no.
Especially for WordPress users. All it takes is to have a mobile responsive theme setup and you're good to go.
So remember that.
24. Offer Your Own Bonuses, if Allowed
A bonus is something you give your readers IF they buy whatever you're promoting.
For example, say you're promoting a certain web hosting company. You could offer a get-started-guide as the bonus your readers would get.
Or if you're promoting some home workout equipment, you could offer how-to guides.
Offering a bonus is a great way to increase your sales. Meaning you'd get more people buying the product you're promoting.
But you still have to be careful.
Some affiliate programs frown upon their affiliates offering bonuses.
To make sure, you can simply contact the affiliate manager, or go the boring way...which is reading their legal pages (Terms of Service, etc).
So, if you do decide to offer up some bonuses, make sure you're allowed to.
25. Don't Always be Promotional
One of the biggest mistakes I've ever made with my affiliate sites was being over-promotional.
You know...being in "affiliate mode" all the time.
Every blog post I published was always aimed at generating sales.
That actually hurt my affiliate site more than it helped.
Why? Because 80% of my content wasn't helpful or useful. At all.
The site I'm talking about was in the make-money niche. And the main product I was promoting on that site was Wealthy Affiliate.
And most of my content, at least in the beginning stages, looked like this:
And those were really some of my blog post headlines.
Pretty bad, huh?
That's not even the worse part...
Out of all that time I spent creating that one affiliate site, I only generated 3 sales from July 2014 to December 2015.
That's exactly 1.5 years of time wasted.
To avoid the same mistakes I made, you'll have to add value, rather than adding affiliate links and promo content.
In other words, don't only create content that's aimed at getting affiliate link clicks. Create content that will actually help out your readers, too.
26. Focus on Driving Targeted Traffic
Let's say you drove 5000 visitors to your site last month and only 50 of them bought the product you're promoting.
That's an ugly 1% conversion rate.
What would that tell you?
A 1% over conversion rate would tell you that your website visitors aren't the right visitors.
It's like dog lovers visiting a website about cats.
So, what's the solution here?
Target the right audience.
27. Relevancy is Key
This actually fits into the last point we made here (the one about targeted traffic).
Your site should have 1 main focus. You know. 1 main topic.
Take AffiliMarketer for instance.
Its main topic is affiliate marketing.
All the content we create revolves around one main goal:
To help you make money selling or promoting other people's products.
That's what you got to do.
You don't want Mac users coming to your blog that's all about the PC.
That'd be a recipe for war. Know what I'm say?
Don't ever, ever go off topic.
28. Go After Different Traffic Sources
We both know that free organic search traffic is the best traffic you can get.
But it takes time for SEO to pay off.
Most of the time, you'll have to wait several months until you start seeing decent traffic numbers from Google.
That's why you should go after other traffic sources.
So the question is:
What other sources should you go after?
One I'd highly recommend is industry forums.
Sure, it takes time also. But you can drive hundreds of visitors back to your site in a matter of weeks. Sometimes even days.
Generating forum traffic really all comes down to a few simple steps:
Another way to drive traffic is through online communities.
The process is basically the same. Being an active contributor who adds value is essential.
You can find these communities within social media sites. Facebook Groups, Google Plus Communities, and Subreddits, for example.
Would you like some more detailed info? Check this out:
29. Focus on Building a Relationship with the Reader
I can't stress it enough...
It's really the most important factor to your success in affiliate marketing.
You can have all the bright shiny toys in the world, all the affiliate partnerships, and all the marketing strategies...
None of it will be worth it without having your own audience.
You know, real people who look up to your work.
People who are dying to read your next blog post.
People who want to use the tools and strategies you're using.
People who trust what you have to say about whatever you're saying.
If you don't put a lot of your focus on building the right audience for your brand or blog, then you might as well go back to your day job.
So build it, alright?
30. Understand that it Takes Time to Build an Audience
OK, so we covered how important it is to build your audience above.
Now it's time to talk a little about what it takes to build the audience.
Your audience comes from the traffic you pull into your blog. Right? Which comes from creating content that ranks in search and gets shared on social media.
You could also get traffic from forums, online communities/groups, and even from other people's blogs.
But that stuff takes time. All of it.
If you want search engine traffic, you'll have to be patient.
If you want social media traffic, you'll have to put the time in to build a following.
If you want traffic from forums and online communities, you'll have to build trust with the members. Which also takes time.
If you want traffic from other blogs, you'll have to put the time in to build relationships.
So you see...
Building a legit audience takes a lot of time.
And if you can understand that, and not rush things, you'll have a real chance at success.
31. Understand the Legal Side of Things
Affiliate marketing is more than promoting products and affiliate commissions.
There's a lot that goes on in the partnerships between the affiliate and the merchant (product owner).
And yes, part of that has to do with the law.
When you become an affiliate of a product or company, you're basically signing a contract/agreement when you fill out the application form.
And in these documents, there are terms.
Terms like, "not using their brand name in PPC" or "no unauthorized giveaways".
If you break these terms, you'd most likely get your affiliate account terminated. Which would mean you'd also lose all your affiliate commissions.
Or sometimes even worse, like jail or a lawsuit.
So my advice to you:
Always read the legal documents in the affiliate agreement.
32. Versus Comparison Posts Still Work
They're rarely around these days. But when there's a few products dominating their industry (or product type/category), putting them against each other in a comparison post can help both you and the reader.
It helps you by driving buyer traffic and making commissions.
It helps the reader by making their decision a lot easier.
So use the Versus Comparison Post.
If you're not really sure how to create your own, I've the perfect examples for you. Use them as inspiration.
I'll leave them below:
33. Email Can Get You to 4+ Figures
Email is a big part of the internet. Millions of people are wired to their email, whether it's from an app on their phone/tablet or on their computer.
This is why it'll play a big part to your affiliate success.
Sure, you can generate sales simply through your blog/website.
But email has the power to build trust and relationships with your readers and email subscribers.
With email, it's like 1-on-1 with the user. It's like you're actually with them, you know?
With a blog, you're not exactly connected as much.
How great does email work? you ask.
Stuart Walker, who is a master affiliate, made over 7G's in only a few days. And it was all through email.
John Chow, another master affiliate, makes 7 figures per year. A lot of that has to do with promoting his favourite web hosting service and the MOBE program through email.
So if you're just getting started, make sure that list building and email marketing are on top of your list.
If you already have a blog, now's the time to get rolling.
Either way, here are the best resources for you to get started with:
Affiliate marketing is a great monetization method to get into.
You don't need a product. You don't have to deal with processing orders and all that other stuff.
Successfully making affiliate sales, however, is a tough business. "Buy this" and "buy that" isn't exactly going to cut it.
That's why you've got to take these 33 affiliate marketing tips to heart.
If you have any questions, concerns, or comments, let us know in the comments section below and we'll get back to you ASAP.