Affiliate marketing is a great way to make money with a popular website or blog, without having to slap advertisements all over your website. The problem is, however, that so many people go about affiliate marketing the wrong way.
Here are five biggest mistakes you should avoid making in affiliate marketing:
You’re not talking about the product, you’re just trying to sell it.
Isn’t the entire point of affiliate marketing to try to get someone to click on a link and buy a product? Yes. But selling that product is the sales page’s responsibility, not yours. Your job is to talk about the product or service and explain how it can help the reader. This is far more likely to get someone to click through and buy than if you just tell them to buy it.
Don’t join every single affiliate program.
Why? Because you don’t have time or space on your blog or website to handle that much selling. You need to pick the ones that are offering products or services that are actually relevant to your readers, not just the ones that promise to make you money.
You don’t test the offer or product before writing about it.
You don’t necessarily have to test every single product that you affiliate market for. You should, however, test the offers. If the offer is going to end up spamming your readers or commit some other deadly inbox sin, you’ll lose your audience’s trust if you point them in that direction.
You haven’t been tracking your page traffic.
Tracking your page traffic is the only way to know if you’re reaching the right people, how effective your content is, and whether or not the people who click through on your ads are actually taking the time to purchase or use the product or offer you marketed to them. Sure, you may be getting paid, but you could be getting paid a lot more if you were tracking and analyzing that data.
Not using the right keywords.
Not using the right keywords to bring targeted traffic to your webpage is one of the biggest mistakes you can make. Using a generic, but applicable keyword will bring you generic, uninterested traffic. Using a specific, targeted keyword will bring you targeted traffic. Use a keyword tool to find relevant keywords.
Content marketing is a favorite of affiliates, professional digital marketing companies, and marketing newbies alike. It’s easy to do, and it’s touted as being an effective way to reach out to people who are actually looking for the information that you have. That said, does it even work? A recent study published in Forbes suggests that it doesn’t work—unless done the right way. What’s the right way to do content marketing? Here are some tips:
Pick the right keywords.
This is where a keyword tool should come in handy. If you’re not using the right keywords in your content, your content marketing is simply not going to work. If you are using the right keywords, however, you’re going to see a boost in your page traffic and, if you’re selling something, in your sales. A keyword tool can take a basic keyword and show you other keywords that you can use that might have better search volumes or lower competition.
Make sure your content is actually useful.
If your content isn’t useful, of course it’s not going to work. The theory behind content marketing is that internet surfers use search engines to look for information and that if you provide that information, they will be able to find you and the usefulness of the content will endear them to your brand. For that to work, you have to have content that is actually useful. This means it is well-written and contains information that your readers want to know.
You have to market that content.
It isn’t enough just to post something on your website and hope that people will find it. You have to get the word out about your content, either by Tweeting about it, posting about it on Facebook, or contacting big-name bloggers to write about your post or website.
Make sure your content is tailored to your niche.
You might be able to write a fascinating article about raising German shepherd puppies, but if that isn’t the main point of your website and has nothing to do with your business, your audience won’t care about it. It will either bring people to your website that won’t care about your brand or it will drive people away from your brand because you appear inconsistent and therefore not worthy of trust.
Make sure your content is useful to those in your niche market. Use social media and other means to let readers know about it. Make sure that the content is not just useful but specific to your niche market.
As children, we’re conditioned to believe that the only way you can make money is to get a “real” job that takes you out of the home. This is because, in reality, this was the only way that our parents and grandparents could make money. The world has changed since the proliferation of the internet, and you can now make plenty of money from the comfort of your own home, if you only know how. Here are some of the best ways to make money from home:
There are search engines that will provide you with the same results that you get on Google, but they will actually pay you for searching. Why? Because they get paid for getting websites in front of people and for collecting data on what people are searching. When you search, they get paid, so they pay you.
Most people assume websites like these are scams. Why? Because it feels like a scam when you hear that all you have to do is answer a few surveys a day to get paid. However, these companies pay their survey takers because, again, they get paid to collect information about consumers. You’re a consumer—why not give your opinion and get paid?
Yes, it’s great to give to charity, but if you’re looking for a couple extra bucks, you can make them by selling your old clothes online. If they’re still in good condition, all you have to do is post pictures with the brand, size, and condition information and then ship them off when someone buys.
Becoming a transcriptionist doesn’t mean years of training—you can transcribe right now. Just find a company that hires people to transcribe at a cut rate; you usually get to pick your own hours and choose how much you make each month.
If you like helping people find products and services that improve their lives, you can do this from the comfort of your own home and actually make money doing it. You’ll need a good keyword research tool on your side to help bring people to your website and some writing skills to keep them there, but if you’ve got those two things, you can find plenty success.
You can sell used books on Amazon.com, Alibris.com and ABCbooks.com You can sell antiques and stuff you make on Etsy.com or eBay.com, etc. My granddaughters make big money with their baby hats. It’s easy to start and you can do it.
PS: There are may ways to make money from home but work one at a time until you get it going. Wealthy Affiliate had a free membership to help you learn the ropes.
If you haven’t done keyword research at all or haven’t done keyword research recently, your SEO campaign probably isn’t reaching its full potential. No matter how awesome your website is or how informative your content is, if you don’t have the right keywords, you’re not going to be reaching the right readers, and that means you might as well not even have a website or any content. Keyword research is integral to a robust search engine optimization campaign. Here are a few of the reasons why:
Keyword Research Ensures Your Website Actually Shows Up in Search Results
Use the wrong keywords, and your SEO campaign will have so much competition that is has no chance of showing up anywhere near the top of the search results. You might end up on page three or four, but if you really want significant traffic, you need to be on page one or two. In fact, 98% of searchers won’t click behind the first page of Google. If you want to be truly visible, that’s where you want to be. Keyword tools make it possible for you to find keywords that would actually allow you to do this.
Keyword Research Helps You Reach the Right Audience
If you use the wrong keywords, you will not be reaching the right audience. Why? Because the people that you really want to find your content won’t be able to find it and those that do find it won’t be interested in it. When you properly research your keywords, you can reach out to the audience that is actually going to be interested in what you have to say, instead of wasting your time and budget trying to reach people that do not want to read your content.
Keyword Research Improves Your Content
How can finding the right keywords improve your content? One of the biggest benefits of using a keyword tool is finding suggestion for new keywords, and therefore new topics, that you might never have considered writing about before. The right tool will be able to tell you want people are looking for. This can help you produce better content that reaches out to your audience to provide them with information they actually want to know. It really is as simple as that!
A good keyword has essentially three components. It has:
High search volume
Each of these components breaks down into a number of different sections. Understanding what makes a good keyword can mean the difference between a successful website that reaches your target audience and just another dead website that has no relevant visitors.
Is your keyword targeted? Or is it too broad? Is it actually related to the topic of your website, or is it just a high search volume keyword? You do not want your keywords to be too broad. Finding targeted keywords means finding keywords that people who are actually looking for your website will search.
It’s the difference between “shoes,” and “black leather combat boots.” If what you sell are black leather combat boots, but you’re using the keyword “shoes,” you’ll find some people who are interested in your product, yes—you’ll find many more if you used “black leather combat boots,” however.
High Search Volume
This simply means that the keyword is likely to be searched. Many keyword research tools will provide you with this information because they know that the right keyword is on that gets plenty of traffic. You might have a really good idea for a keyword, but if no one is actually ever looking for that keyword, no matter how great your content is, no one will ever find it. The higher the search volume on a keyword, the better.
Picking a keyword that has low competition, in addition to relevancy and high search volume, means that you will not have to work very hard in order to get your website to the top of the search results. Keywords with a lot of competition are difficult to top, while those that your competitors have ignored, but which are still being searched by your target audience, will send plenty of traffic your way.
Which Is Most Important?
None of these three components is most important—they are all equally important. A good keyword is one that has all three of these aspects. It may be impossible to find a keyword that has very high search volume and very low competition, but one that has a good compromise between these two aspects is still great, as long as the keyword is still highly relevant.
The problem with keyword research is that it can sometimes only show you keywords that everyone else is using. If this is the case, you may not be using the right seed keywords or you may not be looking in the right places. If you want to find keywords that have very low competition but still have high search volume, here’s how:
Start With the Right Keyword Research Tool
If you’re not using the right keyword research tool, it’s going to be impossible to find keywords that no one else is using. If you were just to sit down and brainstorm keywords, you probably wouldn’t be able to come up with original keywords or you wouldn’t be able to come up with keywords that people are actually searching for. Finding the right tool that gives you suggestions and stats about those keyword suggestions. I suggest JAAXY for affiliate marketers.
Look for Long Tail Keywords
Long tail keywords are keywords that are longer than a few words. In general, they are a full phrase like “how to find good keywords,” or “best black shoes for weddings.” As searches have become far more conversation and far less structured, using keywords like these are far more effective than just using the standard one or two word phrases. People are searching for them, but your competitors probably aren’t using these keywords.
Look for LSI Keywords
LSI stands for latent semantic indexing. In general, these keywords are synonyms and context clues that Google and other search engines can use to determine the topic of your content. For a very simplified example, consider this situation: you have a website about different types of sandwiches. Google uses clues like “ham sandwiches,” “roast beef sandwiches,” and even words like “mustard,” and “mayonnaise,” in order to determine that you are talking about the food and not the Earl of Sandwich. Using extended keywords and long tail keywords that include this kind of LSI information can make you much more successful in the search results.
Research Your Niche
If you’re still having trouble finding keywords that have high search volume but low competition, you might want to start researching your own niche. Reddit is a great place to find thousands of topic suggestions under just about every heading. Search for businesses like yours on social media and see what people are saying about them. Look for words and phrases that come up a lot and test those in your keyword tool.
Note: The FTC wants you to know that links from this article may lead to a purchase that will pay me a small commission. If you do join WAU, I will be grateful.
I’m 83 years old but I’m still bucking the odds. I just enrolled for another year at Wealthy Affiliate University. This will be my ninth year. Sooner or later I’ve got to get out of this business of trying to make a buck on the Internet, but for now I am staying.
I still have about a dozen active sites. I have been cutting back the number of sites dramatically. I host them at Wealthy Affiliate where I’m allowed to have 30 sites on their server. Their hosting service has been very good over the years. It is one reason that I stick around at WAU.
Wealthy affiliate is a community of people of common interest. It’s like being part of a society for stamp collectors. Wealthy affiliate is a community of people who want to earn money on the Internet. Since wealthy affiliate is the premier training site in the world and far surpasses any university course of study that you could take on the subject of making money on the Internet, and far less cost, many folks have been there for a number of years.
Personally, I think those who join Wealthy Affiliate should enroll for one year. The reason is that the cost is greatly reduced and a full commitment is made to setting up websites and getting income. Any half hazard approach will fail.
It cost nothing to start that wealthy affiliate because they have a lifetime free membership which will allow you to create two websites on on their server to get you going. Which can see daylight, you can sign up for the premium membership which has many advantages over the free membership.
The cost of a premium membership is $47 per month. That is pretty stiff for most people even though it is much less that a college course at your local junior college. That is why I say to pay annually to reduce the cost dramatically. When you join wealthy affiliate as a premium member, your cost will never go up. I am still paying what I paid over eight years ago.
Wealthy Affiliate offers many courses of study. Premium members also enjoy tutorials on many subjects, some created by members such as me. I have always been one of the top trainers at Wealthy Affiliate University. I’m getting a bit old for that now, but I still put up a tutorial now and then.
One of the most important things about affiliate marketing is that you need answers to questions. You can get answers almost instantly at Wealthy Affiliate because they have a chat room that is always open. You can also post questions for members to answer and you will get a response quickly. If all else fails, you can always ask one of the owners, Kyle or Carson.
One tremendous advantage of wealthy affiliate is that Kyle and Carson worked their way through college by affiliate marketing. Unlike a college professor that is trying to teach you how to do this, they have the experience that is needed to lead you in the right tracks. And they are always up to date and know directly what is going on with the Internet.
You need to realize that affiliate marketers are not liked by the search engines. They will do everything they can to stop content appearing on the Internet that is not related to what people are looking for on the Internet. Wealthy Affiliate will tell you how to create relevant content that is useful to readers on the Internet but that also helps them to solve a specific problem. Then the search engines will love you.
That is really. The secret to making money on the Internet. You need to be helping people solve a particular problem. Of course you need traffic on your websites to earn money. How to generate traffic will be an important part of your training.
Affiliate marketing is not a get-rich-quick scheme. You need to learn the basics. That takes time. I will probably take you several months, even a year, to start making income. But that income from free you from financial burdens and improve your lifestyle. That is why Wealthy Affiliate is a good investment for your future.
How much longer will I stay at wealthy affiliate? I’m too old to say. But I plan to be here for this next year. If I’m still kicking in 2016 and able to punch a keyboard or dictate into my computer as I’m doing now, I will shoot for 10 years.
That is called career planning. LOL
P.S. I’m tjbooks at WAU. Say, Hello!, when you get over there. John
There is no such thing as easy affiliate marketing. At one time, it was easy. Folks were clicking on banners and if you linked a banner to an affiliate link, you could make a sale for which you would gain a commission. Placing banners on your website will not make you rich as an affiliate marketer.
The search engines upon which affiliate marketers depend, hate affiliate marketers. So they do everything they can to make life miserable for them. The search engines want folks who are using their search function to find information that is relative to the information they are actually looking for. So crappy websites geared simply to pushing a product are dumped from the listings or buried so deep that it would take a month of Sundays to find them.
Affiliate Marketing Is a Business
If you’re going to go into affiliate marketing you need both training and a business plan. In my opinion, since I’ve been a member since 2008, Wealthy Affiliate is the premier site for learning affiliate marketing. You can join for free but if you want the whole shebang, you will need to be a premium member which costs $47 each month. I suggest that you pay annually where the cost is about one-half.
You can go to SBA.gov and prepare a business plan at no cost.
You really need to know where are you going before you take your first steps to success as an affiliate marketer.
Advantages to Being an Affiliate Marketer
There are some advantages to being an affiliate marketer:
1. You can work at home, if you have a computer. If you don’t have a computer, you can use a computer at the library.
2. Once the you have made enough money to leave your day job, you can save money on transportation, clothing, union dues, child care and other costs associated with working a day job.
3. Affiliate marketing can lead you to selling your own products, or products for which you have an exclusive, on the Internet.
4. The startup cost for affiliate marketing are low. The minimum cost are for purchasing a domain and having it hosted.
5. You have the potential of making a substantial income.
6. If you have a portable computing device with Internet access, you can work wherever you are.
7. You can work in your underwear if you want to.
Disadvantages of Affiliate Marketing
1. You do not have control of your own products. You are dependent upon vendors who may discontinue their affiliate programs or even compete with you.
2. You do not have control of your customers. Your vendor will pay you a high commission, often up to 100%, for your first sale. But you don’t know who the customer is and the vendor will make all of the back sales where the big money is.
3. You need to give your readers, the visitors to your website, a free gift to get them to sign up for your mailing list or newsletter. You probably will have to pay some like AWeber or GetResponse to maintain your list. You must sell (promote) to this list.
4. You must attract traffic to your website which can be either a lengthy or expensive procedure.
Writing Relevant Content
To be an affiliate marketer, you must supply continually information that is relevant to the niche you are working. A niche is a small segment of a larger market. You must work within that market to learn what people are like, what they want and what they need. Your job is to promote, not to sell. Selling is the job of the vendor.
You need to begin with keyword research. I use JAAXY because it was designed by affiliate marketers for affiliate marketers. Your keyword should be in your domain name and in the first paragraph of any post or article that you put up on the web. Using more keywords may be considered to be “stuffing”by the search engines. However, relevant keywords will come up natural as you write in the search engines will use these two characterize your article. Articles need to be at least 500 words for the search engine to determine its relevance.
Many affiliate marketers purchase content from writers at Elance.com or other sites. Whoever does the writing, it must be checked for proper spelling and grammar. Fiverr.com is a good place to purchase banners, logos and many other functions related to affiliate marketing.
How To Get Started in Affiliate Marketing
1. Find a niche market. Sometimes the best niche markets are based on your own skills, talents and education. Avoid the money-making niche at least to start. It is very competitive. It is better to look in a niche in relationships, expensive hobbies and health and beauty. But don’t limit yourself. A good niche should have magazines associated with the niche. Then you can see what the niche members are looking for by reading the magazine and am looking for related advertisements.
2. Go to SBA.gov and start preparing your business plan.
3. Learn how to do affiliate marketing. Just stay away from the gurus who will give you a gift and then sell you one thing after another and may actually give you harmful information that will delay your progress. Remember that the gurus are your competition in the money-making niche. I suggest you start at Wealthy Affiliate. If I were you, I would pay for a one-year premium membership because of the low cost. That also will help you to make the required commitment that you will have to have to be successful in Internet marketing. There will be no up sales or back sales by the owners, Carson and Kyle. If you don’t have the money, then use the free membership at WAU to get started.
4. Go to the affiliate networks for the companies themselves to obtain affiliate links. CJ.com is very popular. For Digital Products, I suggest that you use ClickBank.com.
5. Develop your own products or get access to products that you have an exclusive on. You can start with a free web store at Etsy.com to sell products that you make or older products that you may pick up at garage sales. My story is MyStuffy and my granddaughters’ store is YumBaby.
Having your own little store can bring you some extra cash that can be used to get you established in Internet marketing.
6. Buy your domain name, get it hosted, and build your website. Namecheap.com is a good place to buy your domain names and HostGator.com is a good place to host them. I use Wealthy Affiliate for my hosting because I’ve been there since 2008. Most all hosting companies provide WordPress.org themes and plug-ins. You will learn to do all of these functions if you join Wealthy Affiliate.
7. Keep updated on what is going on in the Internet. That is one reason it is nice to be part of a community of Internet marketers such as WAU.
(Note: The FTC requires me to tell you that some links in this site, including links from images, may result in me receiving a commission from a vendor. That hardly ever happens but I am grateful for any commissions that I may receive. John)
Make Your Blog Put Groceries on the Table
1. Your blog should provide relevant and useful information to a niche market.
2. A niche market is a smaller segment of a larger market.
3. To work a niche market, you must be part of the market.
4. To be part of the market you must join in on chats and forums.
5. Niche markets often have niche magazines. You should be a subscriber.
6. Magazines will help you keep up on trends and what your competitors are doing.
7. You can promote your blog in niche magazines.
8. From the start, you should offer a newsletter or other free item to build a mailing list.
9. Back end orders from your mailing list should become a major source of income.
10. Placing AdSense ads on your blog will add income.
11. Offering affiliate products can add income.
12. It is wise to add your own products, products that you have complete control of.
13. You can sell space on your blog to advertisers.
14. You need to post often with original up-to-date information.
14. Your emails or newsletter must not become solely a sales platform.
15. Use WordPress for easy blog post and page creation.
16. Choose your WordPress Theme carefully. You may have to buy the exact one you need but there are plenty of good free ones.
17. Use social media to promote traffic to your blog.
18. Consider PPC (pay-per-click) and other paid ads to check out your concepts to see if they lead to sells.
19. Never buy traffic. It doesn’t work. I’m talking about the scam houses that will send out thousands of emails to get you traffic.
20. Stay away from the gurus. They are your competition. Build your own blog and keep it humming. It may take time to earn some money but the rewards can be great.
21. Use keyword post and pages to boost your SEO (search engine optimization) rankings.
(Note: The FTC requires me to tell you that some links in this site may result in me receiving a commission from a vendor. That hardly ever happens but I am grateful for any commissions that I may receive. John)
The Google Keyword Tool
The Google keyword tool is free but to gain access to it, you have to join Google Adwords. Hopefully you will place ads on Google. (However, since Google and the other search engines hate affiliate marketers, you will probably be priced out of the market. Maybe better to go to Bing (MS Yahoo) or AOL. Also, ads on Twitter, and especially FaceBook, might be better for you. ) Just search Keyword Planner or Google Keyword Tool.
The fact is that the Google keyword tool is used by most Internet marketers. You don’t have to place ads on Google to use it and it will give you a tremendous amount of information. You will be able to see the monthly keyword visit count, the amount of competition, etc. Click Here to see how to use it.
Alternatives to Google’s Keyword Tool
The JAAXY keyword tool is specially designed for affiliate marketers you might find that suits you better. JAAXY will probably give you more accurate results.
There are plenty of other free keyword tools. Word Tracker has such a tool. Others are KeywordSpy, SEMRush and KeywordEye. Click Here to see descriptions of these tools.