Affiliate marketing is the process by which an affiliate earns a commission for marketing another person’s or company’s products. The affiliate simply searches for a product they enjoy, then promotes that product and earns a piece of the profit from each sale they make.
Affiliate marketing is for anyone
Recommended for: anyone – but in order to get started, you first need to pick a good niche and build up a decent audience
How much can you earn: like with most of these tactics, it depends on a lot of different factors; that said, some affiliate marketers earn upwards of $20k a month
Start-up costs: depends on the platform you use to promote these affiliate products; for example, on social media you could easily do it for free, while with blogging and/or email marketing you should invest in an email marketing tool – we use Sendinblue. But your costs will still be under $100/month. Try it free.
Affiliate marketing can be an extremely lucrative way to make money online and to generate passive income; here’s how it works:
- You find affiliate programs (for example, the Amazon Affiliate Program allows you to promote a wide variety of products) or individual affiliate programs (for example, many software tools have their own affiliate programs) – to find affiliate programs, you can easily search for the “brand name” or “your keyword” + “affiliate program”
- Is it a good product or service? It’s easy to just sign up and start selling but is it genuinely good product or service? Because if it isn’t, even if you get some people to buy it, if they’re disappointed in what they’re getting it could really affect your results in the long-run; after all, why should they trust any more of your recommendations if you’ve recommended something of low-quality? So before you start promoting something, try it yourself too – or focus on products/services that you already know are good
- Study their program: how much do you earn per sale? How do you get paid? Be careful as some programs give you credits for using their services, rather than pay you a percentage of the sale. Plus, some programs offer very low sales percentages for their affiliates so it might not be worth signing up for them
- Would your audience buy this? Take the time to carefully consider the answer to this question as there’s no point in promoting products or services that your audience can’t actually afford or don’t really need.
- Sign up for each program: follow the instructions provided on their affiliate program pages and then wait – in some cases, you’ll need to wait a few days to be vetted
Then, it’s time to start promoting and selling these products.
You’ve got multiple options here:
- Blogging: this is one of the most effective ways to promote affiliate links
- Social media: build up your social profile, become an influencer (that doesn’t mean that you need to have millions of followers; even an audience of 50k truly engaged followers can make you an influencer in your niche – the keyword here being “engaged”!) and once you’ve got a loyal audience, they’ll trust in your recommendations and want to buy the same things you use
- Email marketing: another highly effective way to promote and sell affiliate links is to build up a strong email subscriber list that you send regular content to. As you grow this list and as your subscribers become more engaged with your content, your results will also grow
- YouTube: if you love video and love creating them, this is another great way to promote your videos. Using YouTube keyword research to help you find out what people search for online and optimize your videos to rank high up in search results and therefore, get more views
What do I need to start?
To get started, you need a blog and you can build a blog with no coding skills with a easy Drag-&-Drop WordPress builder. Get 300+ design templates, 1-click WordPress installation, web hosting & domain registration, all for only $2.95/mo with Bluehost, the #1 trusted WordPress hosting. Signup now.
Join an Affiliate Network
You can browse a huge range of affiliate programs on Shareasale affiliate marketplace sites. ShareASale is a popular affiliate marketing network. It features more than 2,500 merchants offering a variety of products and services.
As an affiliate, you select any of the ShareASale merchants and direct customers to their websites.The merchants will then pay a commission for sales resulting from the affiliates’ referrals. Find a sponsor for your web site today. Get paid for recommending brands. Click here to get started.
Want to learn more?
Follow our quick guide
Want to start earning a commission for recommending products or services to your friends or readers? Learn affiliate marketing.