What Exactly is Affiliate Marketing?

If you have been searching the internet for methods to increase your income or maybe start up your own business from home, you will probably have come across the term “Affiliate Marketing”, but do you really know what that means?

Affiliate Marketing

In a nutshell, affiliate marketing is one of the fastest growing industries on the Internet. Two of the prime reasons for its popularity are that you don’t need to have a lot of technical knowledge and you can get started with a minimal budget.

Affiliate marketing means selling products for merchants and getting paid a commission on your sales. It’s the online equivalent of being a salesperson. But being online, you don’t have to physically go door-to-door. Another way to describe it is to visualize your website as a promotion or advertising business.  You have a website and you advertise products on it. When someone clicks on your ads, visits the merchant’s website and purchases their product, you earn a commission. You don’t necessarily have to have a website, but generally, that is how it is done.

There are a few ground rules to need to master if you want to be successful:

1. Your Website

Your website, or websites if you have more than one, is your showcase for the products you intend to promote. Therefore, it’s important to make sure it is enticing to any shopper that drops in for a visit. Obviously, you want them to buy whatever you are promoting.

What Is Affiliate Marketing?

When you are building your website focus on making it user friendly, professional and interesting. And above all, your promotions must be credible. If you find the thought of building a website daunting, you will find there are many companies and freelancers on the internet that can build one for you at a reasonable cost.

2. Your Promotions

Selecting the right products to promote is important, you need to find products that people are actually looking for and are ready to buy. It is well worth your time to do a bit of research in places like Amazon or eBay if you are selling physical products; or Clickbank if you are selling digital products.

Website Planning and Testing

3. Testing and Tracking

One of the most overlooked tasks, that affiliate marketers fall into the trap of, is not testing and tracking their sales. Failure to do this can result in a waste of your time and money if you continue to promote something that is just not going to return you any big profits. Sometimes you need to cut your losses and move on to other more profitable products.

4. Follow a Plan

All too often affiliate marketers jump in without really stopping and thinking about just how they are going to make that money they are dreaming about. Set up your own action plan and allocate goals, objectives and time frames. You will find it a lot easier to keep on track when you are following a plan.

5. Avoid the Shiny Objects

Falling into this trap has cost many a marketer a fortune. Every day you will find emails landing in your inbox promising you a 6 figure income with just a few clicks of your mouse. There will also be offers for software, training, strategies, and other things that claim to be something you can’t live without.

Shiny Object Syndrome

Don’t get sucked in. So many people do that it has been given a name – “Shiny Object Syndrome”. This is the fastest way to lose your money. By not getting sucked into the fake promises you already have a head start over many other newbie marketers.

There are no shortcuts. But if you are prepared to make a bit of effort and spend some time learning a few skills, you are well on the way to earning yourself a nice healthy income.

Don’t forget the old analogy – slow and steady always wins the race.

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