How many times have you heard someone say that affiliate marketing is simple? These are the same folks who insist that in no time at all, you can make hundreds of thousands of dollars overnight. Sounds too good to be true, doesn’t it?
Well, we have some good and bad news. The bad news is it’s not that easy to become successful. However, the good news is it’s possible to achieve this level of affiliate marketing if you’re willing to work for it.
Affiliate marketing is one of the most popular ways for newbies and veterans to meet new business connections, enhance their marketing skills, and make their fortune. Essentially, affiliates are people who partner with businesses to sell their products in exchange for a commission.
For instance, health influencers partner with protein products and gym equipment. If fans of the influencers click the link inside a video, blog post, or social media post and buy the product, the content creator will receive a share of the profit.
Today we are going to talk about 5 tips you should keep in mind if you’re thinking about starting an affiliate marketing website.
Let’s get started!
Build Customer Personas
The very first thing you need to do when setting up an affiliate marketing website is to research your target audience. Imagine trying to sell a product or service, but you don’t know anything about the prospect looking to buy. You would have a hard time making points that resonate with their pain points and goals, making it highly unlikely that they will click your link and buy a product.
You should start by thinking carefully about the industry you want to cover. Don’t take the path of some affiliates and go after products across many different industries. There are serious consequences when promoting a bunch of different products designed for very different people. Imagine trying to sell computer hard drives on your fitness site, and you’ll see what we mean.
Once you decide on one industry you want to cover, start taking notes on what you know about your customers. With the fitness example, the affiliate knows their audience tends to be active, under 40 and has a median income of $80,000. Based on that information, you can make some assumptions about your marketing goals and content, but you should undoubtedly dive a little deeper.
Social media is a great place to learn specific information on your audience. Over 3.8 billion people use platforms like Facebook and Twitter to talk to their peers and businesses. When you have a firm grasp of your audience’s basic outline, information on social media can fill in the blanks. You can conduct polls and surveys, talk to potential customers in groups related to your industry, and chat with people that engage with your page.
Now that you’ve gathered plenty of valuable data on your audience, you can start making customer persona sheets. Essentially, these sheets are profiles that represent your average customers. Include demographic, personality, and behavioral information in this sheet. You can create as few or many as you need to learn about customers across your affiliate marketing website.
Create Irresistible Content
Content marketing is essential for affiliate marketers. The partnerships you find along the way don’t make you unique, it’s your voice and personality on display throughout your content. All you have to do is look at some of the most popular influencers, affiliates, and social media personalities to see the value in consistently creating compelling content.
If you need more proof, consider this; 61% of U.S. consumers made a purchase based solely on a blog suggestion. In other words, your opinion and words matter. The best way to boost your sales is by creating excellent content that engages, educates, and entertains your audience.
You should consider creating a consistent content schedule, so viewers know when to expect your next blog post or video. When you dedicate time to making a schedule and following through, you help build consumer trust, which encourages them to come back and read more content in the future.
Also, you’ll want to go for long-form content. Research shows that content over 2000 words gets more shares than shorter posts. No one will buy the product you’re trying to sell if you put up a cheaply made post that took you 20 minutes to create. Instead, focus on bringing a new perspective, technique, or idea to the table. Encourage your readers to engage with your content, and they will be more responsive to the links throughout your content and those shared on your social media page.
Shorten Your Affiliate Marketing Links
Next, we are going to talk about the importance of shortening your affiliate marketing links. When you work with a business, they will give you a unique URL that you can use on social media, email, and on-site for your subscribers. Once the user clicks the link and completes their purchase, the affiliate gets their commission.
Here’s the problem. Most affiliate links look something like this:
I don’t know about you, but that link would make me feel uncomfortable if I was a shopper. I have no idea where it will take me or if a virus or malware is waiting for me on the other end.
Instead of putting your users in this situation, use a link shortener to create attractive, easy-to-place links. Shortening your links can be felt across all platforms, but in most cases, social media is the most affected.
The reason for this phenomenon is people use social media to shop. When you consider that 47% of people on Pinterest use the platform to buy and find new products, short links are necessary. Pinterest is an incredibly visual site, and a big ugly link will push people away faster than you can imagine.
Work with Other Marketers
There are plenty of other affiliates out there selling products in your industry. Instead of instinctively looking at everyone selling similar products as competition, start building rapport and looking for partners.
In many cases, two medium-sized affiliate marketing companies will connect and product content together. The goal is to cross-pollinate subscribers. The boost in brand awareness helps drive more visitors to both websites, and as a result, both businesses usually see more sales.
When you want to find someone to work with, it’s critical that you look for folks selling products that complement what you offer. For instance, if you’re an affiliate for an email marketing firm, you would want to partner with a hosting affiliate for maximum exposure. Theoretically, you can’t have one without the other, so the partnership makes sense.
You’ll find that some partnerships work out, and others don’t. It’s okay to be selective when you’re looking for someone to work with, but you should also create an agreement that ensures mutual benefits for all parties involved. For example, you could put a clause that requires a certain percentage of clicks or unique visits for the partnership to continue.
Use Products You Trust
Our final tip today is centered around the businesses you choose to partner with. We all know that there are virtually endless possibilities when it comes to companies looking for affiliates. But you need to know that not all of them are good options.
When you decide on what products you want to add to your site, make sure you’re confident in the product or service before you suggest it to your followers. You don’t want someone to buy a product based on your recommendation, only to find out that the marketing was incorrect or flat-out misleading.
You could ask for a free sample or trial if someone reaches out to you. Similarly, you can contact businesses that make products you already enjoy. The purpose of putting products on your site is to earn commissions, and you’re gambling with your livelihood — and reputation — but using products that you don’t trust.
If you get a random message from a brand offering a ton of cash for a very specific marketing spiel, you may want to reconsider. These businesses are rampant in the mobile game industry. Some companies are offering streamers nearly 3,000 dollars to promote a product that is designed to initially manipulate people out of money by way of microtransaction. This is not a good choice for a product, and affiliates have faced fallout from their decision to work with these kinds of companies.
Back to You
There you have it, 5 affiliate marketing tips you can use to boost your sales. The most important thing you should remember when pursuing an affiliate career is success rarely happens overnight. You’re going to have to invest plenty of time and energy in your work if you want to make a steady passive income one day.
Don’t get discouraged if you don’t see the growth you were expecting right away. Take your time and examine your partner options, target audience, content, and formatting. Stay consistent and relevant, and before long, you’ll have a flourishing affiliate marketing website with plenty of high-quality products available through your website.