Many people are looking for ways to take control of their lives. Like me, they want to have financial security beyond the salary provided by their 9 to 5. Through their research, they most likely learned about affiliate marketing. But the predominant question is always whether extra income with affiliate marketing is something that is possible.
The short answer is Yes! There are some extremely successful marketers out there. Many of them make over 50K per month. The good news is that there are thousands if not millions of people we have never heard about, making a decent living online through affiliate marketing.
How do I know? Because I am one of them. I also belong to a large community of affiliate marketers where stories of success are shared daily. Affiliate marketing works and you can definitely earn a very good, or even great, monthly income.
This article will show you what you will need to make extra income with affiliate marketing. We will go through the traps and pitfalls you will need to avoid as well as what to expect before you start earning any money online.
Finally I will be sharing some resources with you that will help you in your quest. The final recommendation is not totally secret but it is not known by many. I will show you how it can skyrocket your chances of success online.
Let’s get going!
AFFILIATE MARKETING – WHAT IS IT AND HOW DOES IT WORK?
If you are here I assume that you have already performed some research on making money online. I can also guess that you have already decided that Affiliate Marketing (AM) is something that is intriguing to you.
In any case, I want to spend a short amount of time going over the basics to make sure that we are all on the same page.
Affiliate marketing is an arrangement where you get paid a commission for selling someone else’s product through your blog or website.
How do you get paid? Once you sign up with a product owner, called a merchant in AM lingo, you will get a unique link and ID that is assigned to you only. You place the link on your site and when your readers click on that link, they get a cookie on their device.
This cookie has your data stored in it. When the reader is sent to the merchant site through you link and they buy something, the merchant website will read the cookie and attribute the sale to you.
This is a very established process. It is extremely appealing because as an affiliate, you do not have to hold inventory, deal with shipping or customer complaints. The merchant does all that.
You get access to a neat report that shows you how many people clicked through your links and how much commission you are due!
Now that we have addressed the basics let’s go to the next section.
WATCH FOR THESE PITFALLS
I want to address 2 things that will absolutely cause you to fail in affiliate marketing. Being aware of them will improve your chances of success.
While there are thousands if not millions of people making a great living online, the road is littered with failed attempts. They failed because of 2 things:
- Unreasonable expectations: Most people that are looking for a way to supplement or replace their current incomes have impossible expectations. They expect to make money overnight. In fact, they expect to make lots of money overnight!
A business, whether online or offline, takes time to start generating income. The appeal on an online business is that it is relatively inexpensive to start and it does not take too long to start making you money. But it does take time.
Do not expect to earn any significant income before 3 to 6 months of consistent work and effort. If you work hard for a few months, you will start seeing the fruits of your labor. Your commissions will trickle in at first but soon they will become an avalanche.
Most people fail because they give up too soon. They expect immediate results and decide that the model is a scam because they did not see results in the first month! Don’t be one of them. Stick with it and trust the system. It will work!
- People fall for SCAMs: This is closely related to the unreasonable expectations but deserves to be discussed on its own. Most people looking to make money through affiliate marketing fall for SCAMs and eventually quit.
Why do they fall for SCAMs? I can answer this question from personal experience. I spent years chasing the dream of get-rich-quick schemes and fell for every SCAM out there.
As new online entrepreneurs, our wants and desires are well-known. We want to be free from the 9 to 5. Some of us want to supplement our income. Others are not happy with their chosen profession that they want to do something meaningful.
Unscrupulous marketers know this! They play on our deepest desires and manipulate our feelings with promises of independence, Ferraris, and unlimited riches. Even better, they promise us that we can get all of those things with little to no work.
Their websites are amazingly well crafted. We fall for the BS! Soon after we buy their inflated products, we find out that they don’t work. We look for another shiny get-rich-quick scheme to get into. And the cycle continues until we give up affiliate marketing as a SCAM.
I know because I did it! Look here! There is no get-rich-quick formula. Affiliate marketing works for thousands of people every day. It can and will work for you! You need to have realistic expectations and do the work needed to succeed.
Now that we are done with this unpleasantness let’s move to something more positive!
THE FORMULA TO MAKING EXTRA MONEY WITH AFFILIATE MARKETING
To succeed in affiliate marketing you need to follow 4 simple steps:
- Pick an audience (Niche)
- Build a site
- Attract that audience to your site
- Monetize your site
That’s it! The appeal of AM is that it is conceptually simple. There are many resources that will help you succeed in each of the above mentioned steps.
I will share the resource I have used and recommend to my readers a bit later. Since this article is focused on extra income, I will spend some time talking about the last step: Monetizing.
HOW DO YOU MONETIZE?
This is where the “marketing” in “affiliate marketing” comes in. It is a skill that you will master over time. Don’t worry, it requires a bit of knowledge but it is not hard. I will give you a resource for that later.
The way you make money from your blog or website is by offering the exact service or product that your reader is looking for. You have to know your audience extremely well-to-do this successfully.
Every niche or target audience has some pain points. By pain points, I mean some problem that they are looking to solve. Your job is to offer them the best solution to that problem. If you can do that, you will succeed.
Let me give you an example:
Let’s say that you pick the eczema niche. To be more specific, you pick the natural cures for eczema niche.
Now let’s say that you have a loyal following of readers that you attracted by creating amazing content.
You do some research and find 2 products that could help your readers. One is a comprehensive guide to a natural diet that reduces inflammation. The other is a topical cream that improves eczema thanks to a newly discovered steroid-like compound.
If your niche is natural cures for eczema, which one of the 2 products do you think will appeal to them? You did your research and you know for a fact that both will work, but only one will be the right product for your niche.
The natural diet solution will appeal to them more!
This may have been a bit nit picky but I hope you get the idea. If you want a more obvious example, you would not offer a poison ivy product to your eczema audience just because the poison ivy product cures itchy skin.
You need to offer the product that is appropriate and targeted specifically to your niche.
One important thing I feel must be said. While we all want to make money, our success as affiliate marketers hinges on trust. We need to make sure we offer the BEST solution for our audience even if that best solution results in a lower commission for us.
In the example above, let’s assume that the chemical cream gave you a $15 commission while the diet course only offered you $10. You would still offer the diet solution to your natural cure niche because it is the best solution or them!
THE BEST AFFILIATE PROGRAMS FOR YOU TO MAKE EXTRA MONEY
Almost every product out there has an affiliate program. This has been the market standard ever since a little known company in the 90’s established the model online. That company was Amazon!
Yup, the affiliate marketing compensation model was established by good old Amazon. Since then many affiliate marketing programs have come to life.
Many have been around for years and provide reliable commissions and sometimes excellent supporting materials like banners, ads and content. I will talk about a few of the most well-known.
Amazon: If you are going to be focusing on offering your readers physical products then Amazon is king! It enjoys immense name recognition and trust. You will find a product to sell in 99% of the niches, so you are covered in that regard.
The commissions are very low in my opinion but you can make up for that in volume and higher conversion rates. The commissions are generally between 4% and 9%.
Digital products: These are products that can be delivered to your readers online. Most of the times they are in the form of written or video courses. Often it is a combination of both.
The appeal of digital products is that the commissions are usually substantially higher than they are for physical products. They range from 20% to 75%. Here are a few affiliate marketing networks you can try to start:
Whether you focus on physical solutions to your readers problems or digital solutions, the companies mentioned above will get you started in a positive way.
Sign up for them and navigate the products and services that they offer. I hope that the possibilities get you excited and motivated.
I promised a semi-secret resource at the start of this post so here it goes!
THE ONE RESOURCE I HIGHLY RECOMMEND TO MY READERS
As I mentioned above, affiliate marketers have to offer the best solution to their readers. In my humble opinion, and after much trial and error, I can honestly make this recommendation to you.
It is a solution that I use each and every day. It has allowed me to finally make some headway and gain a measure of success.
The solution I am referring to is called Wealthy Affiliate. It is a community of affiliate marketers but way more than just a community. It has the latest sets of tools and courses that have helped thousands make money online since 2005.
Wealthy Affiliate has super-affiliates that make 5 figures per month. They are active in the community and will help you make money. The classes and courses will take you step by step through picking a niche, building a site (see video below) and writing content.
The good news is that it is free. You can get limited access to the tools as a free starter member. You do not need to put in a credit card number and there is no time limit to upgrade to a paid membership.
You will get access to 10 step by step courses that will take you through ideation all the way to building a site. You also have access to 2 free websites so you can put what you learn into action.
You have nothing to lose!
I am confident that you will find value in this offer. Since it is free, you have nothing to lose. Test drive it for as long as you want. You will not be disappointed. If you want a more in depth review of wealthy affiliate please click here!
I hope you found the post helpful. Whether you chose to take advantage of the free wealthy affiliate membership or not, please make sure that you take some action towards your business on a daily basis.
I can’t tell you how freeing and satisfying it is to make money online. The feeling that you will be ok if something happens to your 9 to 5 is like no other feeling!
I want you to experience that joy!
Please leave your comments or questions below! I would love to hear from you.
To your online success!