Most people know that there are millions of dollars being spent every single day purchasing products and services online. But did you know that you could be earning a % on every sale made by simply referring and recommending the products that you like to people?
It’s one of the best ways to get started making money online – you don’t need a website, you don’t need a blog, you don’t even need any cash to get started, although these things can help, you can certainly start without them. By helping consumers research and choose products they already want to buy, which could be as simple as writing a 500-word article (just like this one) you could be earning a nice little second income.
Or if you want to take it a little more seriously, you can earn a full income, even more, than most “real world” jobs pay.
I personally make a full-time living through affiliate marketing and have been doing it now for years. Working from home, choosing the hours to suit my lifestyle, and making a lot more than I ever made working 60 hours a week in a job I hated.
But if you really want to achieve some success with affiliate marketing you need a plan that will get you the level of income you want. A lot of people I speak to love the “Idea” of making money online, they usually ask me a million questions and tell me how serious they are, how they are going to go home and get stuck into it, read all the stuff I recommend and get started asap.
But then most of them never actually follow through on any of it. Then 6 months later I will see them again, some will avoid the topic completely, while others tell me again how serious they are, and they are really going to do it “this time”.
It’s pretty amusing for me, watching people make up excuses as to why they haven’t done anything.
Personally, I don’t really care if they do it or not, it doesn’t affect me at all. Although it would be nice to have more friends who arent working all week to play golf with and take the boat out. But other than that, it makes no difference to me.
I don’t really understand it though, I believe it’s the perfect business, think about it, you can make as much money as you like, your income is a direct result of the amount of effort you put in. You can work whatever hours you like. (Which is very few when you have been doing it for a few years) Plus you can do it from anywhere you can plug in a laptop. So if you like to Holiday or travel around the world, it’s the perfect business.
But how do you get involved?
The best place to start is by going to a website that houses a wide range of affiliate products. This keeps everything together in one easy-to-access place and gives you plenty to explore. You can also get an idea of which particular areas you would like to concentrate on. The worst thing you can do in affiliate marketing is to use the scattergun approach.
This is when you try and promote a wide range of products that aren’t connected with each other, all from a single website. In essence, it isn’t aimed at anyone – and you’ll make fewer sales as a result.
Instead, do some research and come up with a specific group of people that you can find a wide range of products for. Or find a particular problem that people are searching online for solutions to, and direct them to the solution. Not only do you stand a much better chance of making a sale, But people will actually thank you for helping them find a solution, and be more than happy that you got paid to help them.
But if you don’t have a website, how can you promote your products?
There are several ways of doing this. One of the best is to use article directories like EzineArticles.com or Web 2.0 sites like Squidoo.com, which allow you to build web pages for free on pretty much any subject you like. Once these get indexed by Google and you do a little promotion for them, then you’ll start getting a steady stream of traffic – if you’ve picked the right topics and search terms to target.
At the beginning, I mentioned the need to have a plan to reach the level of income you want. Not many affiliates actually do this and it’s one of the main reasons why more people aren’t making a lot of money with affiliate marketing. It’s certainly not because the potential isn’t there – it’s because they don’t plan to take advantage of it in the right way.
You should always look at how much you will get by way of commission for each product. Obviously the less the commission, the more units you will need to sell to achieve your desired income. You’ll achieve this through a balance of products obviously, but it’s worth bearing in mind.
You also need to think about the type of people you are marketing to. What kind of income do they bring in? How much are they likely to want to spend on the products you’ll be offering? If you don’t match these two aspects up properly you will struggle to make any real sales.
It’s also helpful to set short, medium, and long-term goals to help keep things in perspective. A short-term goal might be to sell five products a week continually, for example. A long-term goal could be to make $100,000 a year from affiliate marketing. Goals will help you to decide where you want to go with your fledgling affiliate marketing business.
Another important point to be aware of is that it’s wise to protect your income wherever you can. What I mean by this is that affiliate links can be rather obvious at times, and some people will actually delete your link and go into the site and buy something while denying you the commission.
The easy way to prevent this is to simply buy a domain for each product you are going to promote, and redirect it to the affiliate offer. There are plenty of free tools that do this for you online, and it’s really the safest way to protect your interests. It also changes a long ugly link into a nice short one – much nicer for the article directories!
Affiliate marketing is like any other business, once you start generating some income, then you can start to invest some of that money back into your business to ensure you enjoy ongoing growth.
In short, start slowly and keep those visions of a huge income in perspective, to begin with. You’ll soon get to know your way around the business and with each new experience, you can build your knowledge and earn even more in the months and years to come.
When I was first starting out, I learned the basics by purchasing a few books and e-books on the topic, but mostly it was left to trial and error. I had to make a lot of mistakes in order to find a few good ideas that worked and made money.
Fortunately these days there are some really good resources available for people looking to learn this business. So if you’re serious about becoming an affiliate marketer, check out some of the resources on this page.
The most important thing to do though is to just get started, do something right now, then follow it up tomorrow with something else… Try and do something every day towards your goal, don’t put it off for a single day, and before you know it, you will have a nice steady stream of profits coming in.
Too many of the people I talk to, put things off until they have more time, but then they forget and never end up getting started at all. So commit to yourself, take some action and get started today.