How to Get Into Affiliate Marketing

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When beginners ask me about the one thing they can do to start making money online fast, I have no hesitation in recommending affiliate marketing - as is this truly one of the fastest, easiest, and most profitable ways to make money online.

Affiliate marketing is essentially “selling other people’s products”; i.e. you direct people to the merchant’s website, and if they buy the product, you get a commission.

As such, it caters to both the absolute newbie and the expert online entrepreneur.

For newbie online marketers it a simple and fast way to get started making money online and for seasoned marketers it's a great way to add an additional income stream to what you're already doing.

Its beauty lies in both its simplicity and its scalability, i.e. your income will grow along with your marketing skills.

For now, instead of focusing on the money, let’s go over some basics and explain what affiliate marketing offers to you.

The fundamental steps for getting involved with affiliate marketing are quite straightforward:

  1. Find and sign up for reputable affiliate programs that offer products and/or services that inspire you, motivate you, and make you eager to promote.
  2. Drive traffic via your unique affiliate tracking link to the merchant’s website, using your favorite marketing tactics.
  3. Get paid!

We’ll explore the nitty-gritty of parts A.

and B. in upcoming articles. Suffice to say that affiliate marketing is a long-term online business activity. Expecting thousands of dollars to pour into your bank accounts through “get rich quick” schemes is not to be encouraged. What we are looking to do is create a sound base for sustainable income growth, starting with a few hundred dollars per month, and then scaling up to a serious five, six, or even seven-figure income.

See Also: The Most Profitable Affiliate Marketing Niches

Below are the main benefits of affiliate marketing:

1. Affiliate Marketing Relieves You of the Burden to Create Products

All marketers are obsessed with creating the killer product that will put them on Easy Street. The reality is that product creation can be time consuming, and even the best new offers on the Internet are often lost in the crowd.

Affiliate marketing lets beginners become full-fledged marketers right away, often with well-established products that have been proven sellers for many years.

Rather than focusing on market research, product creation, and testing whether or not you'll even have a winner on your hand; you can start promoting proven products that already exist and simply earn a commission for doing so.

Instead of wracking your brain, concentrate on honing your marketing skills, all the while earning some money on the way.

2. Good Merchants Offer You Marketing Support

You don’t even need a marketing background to get started as an affiliate marketer. Ideally, a merchant or company has a good back office of tools and suggestions for communicating with your list, placing clickable ads, or using social media to increase traffic.

They've already created the marketing materials that they know will work.

If you're a beginner you should still develop you internet marketing expertise, make no mistake about it. However, you should not be intimidated by the competition. Generally if you see a lot of other affiliates promoting a similar product, you know it's a winning offer that will convert.

3. Commissions Can be Quite Attractive

It’s in a merchant’s interest to offer affiliate marketers good compensation – after all, they are getting “free” promotion for their products from a dedicated sales force; i.e. you. Digital information products on ClickBank, for example, often offer commissions that exceed 50%.

Keep an eye out for high commission rates. On occasion, even 100% commissions (or more!) are possible because the merchant is more interested in the prospect’s contact information or is looking to upsell (i.e. use the purchase of lower cost products to offer higher-end products).

Small businesses and “solopreneurs” are worth investigating for these reasons.

In addition to looking for higher commission affiliate products you should also consider promoting higher ticket products; which naturally will lead to higher commissions per sale.

Another type of affiliate product to consider promoting is a continuity or membership type program; which will pay you commissions month after month as long as the customer doesn't cancel their subscription.

Affiliate Marketing: The Bottom Line

Affiliate marketing is a multi-billion dollar business in the United States alone, and attracts millions of people from all four corners of the world. That’s the reality of the information economy and digital commerce today. To stay ahead of the curve, new affiliate marketers should keep the “high trust, high value” front and center in their thoughts.

Although you do not need to purchase all the products you promote, you should be knowledgeable enough about them to judge their worthiness. Technically, affiliate products are not your products per se. However, they do reflect on your judgment as a marketer, because people who buy through your links may remember you and your recommendations.

If you promote bad products you'll lose trust with your email marketing list and lose out on future sales recommendations.

Those are just a few reasons why affiliate marketing is so popular and why it's one of my favorite ways to make money online. You can learn more about affiliate marketing and get more affiliate marketing tips and tricks right here.