Affiliate Marketing is performance-based marketing where an ‘affiliate marketer’ or ‘affiliate’ promotes someone else’s products or services of a company. In return, the affiliate marketer receives a commission when people buy those products/services through his/her referral. The sales are tracked via affiliate links posted on websites or blogs or products/services landing pages created by the affiliate marketer. In short, it is a concept to generate a passive income that has turned many ordinary people into millionaires and billionaires.
Looking below at recent statistics, you wouldn’t be surprised why affiliate marketing is currently considered a popular strategy to generate significant online revenues:
- Commission paid out to Affiliate Marketers is increasing by 10.1% annually around the globe.
- 15-30% of all sales for advertisers are generated by affiliate programs that are on par with SEP and PPC marketing.
- 81% of brands and 84% of publishers are already leveraging the power of affiliate marketing.
- Affiliate Marketing accounts for 15% of today’s digital media advertising.
- 35% of the affiliates earn over $20000 every year, out of this 12% make over $75000 as an affiliate income.
Now let us understand how affiliate marketing works:
- Pick a ‘niche’ for the product or service to promote.
- Join the best ‘affiliate program’ for the selected niche.
- Join the best ‘affiliate network’ for the selected affiliate program.
- Share the affiliate link via channels like Social media, blogs, websites, YouTube videos, Facebook ads, or any other form.
- When someone makes a purchase via your affiliate links, earn an attractive affiliate commission.
How to choose the most profitable ‘Affiliate Niche’?
A product or a service that can be promoted by you, based on your field of business is actually an affiliate niche. For example, if you own a computer technology business, then ideally, your affiliate niche would focus on computer-related products, such as laptops, printers, etc.
And in case you haven’t started a business yet, your best option would be to either follow your passion or simply figure out what people want and what kind of products/services they are looking for?
Market research plays an important role in identifying the product or service which people demand the most. Affiliates are most successful when the products or services they promote match the interests of their followers and subscribers. Also, many successful affiliate marketers advise recommending and promoting only products or services that the affiliate is personally familiar with because familiarity with the product or service helps to build trust between the affiliate and end-user.
To name a few popular and profitable niches among successful affiliate marketer are as below:
- Health & Wellness (30-40% commission)
- Fashion (15% commission)
- Beauty (15% commission)
- Hobbies (10% commission)
- Online Courses (10-30% commission)
- Books (10% commission)
- Medical equipment & medical support (10% commission)
- Pets (10-30% commission)
- Fitness (15-30% commission)
- Dating & Relationship (Up to 75% on initial orders)
Depending on which category you are passionate about or well versed in, you should go with that choice.
How to choose the most profitable ‘Affiliate Program’?
Some important factors to consider while choosing the best ‘Affiliate Programs’ for your niche are mentioned below:
- Once you have zeroed down the affiliate niche, the next step is to research the most profitable affiliate program for that niche.
- As per the commission structure of the merchant’s affiliate program, an agreement between an affiliate and a merchant is set whether it will be Pay-Per-Click (PPC), Pay-Per-Sale (PPS), or Pay-Per-Lead (PPL).
There are numerous programs for each niche in the market, so you need to do thorough research for the most profitable & feasible affiliate program for your selected niche. Some of the key factors to keep in mind for the high paying affiliate programs are as below:
- Commission Rate – The % from the sale proceeds are paid by an advertiser to an affiliate for referring a new customer to them.
- Average Order Value (AOV) – It is the average dollar amount spent when a customer completes an order. AOV can be calculated by dividing total revenue by the number of purchases.
- Earnings Per Click (EPC) – It is the revenue an affiliate earns for each click to an advertiser’s website through an affiliate link.
- Cookie Duration – A cookie is a value stored in the end user’s computer to track affiliate sales. The duration is the time length for which the cookie stays on the user’s system after clicking an affiliate link.
As an example, with a 10-day cookie duration, if a user clicks an affiliate link and makes a purchase within 10 days, the affiliate receives credit for the sale. Typically, 30 days is the standard cookie duration.
Hence, one should focus on high commission rates, high AOV, potential EPC, and long cookie durations.
How to join an ‘Affiliate Network’?
An Affiliate Network acts as a mediator between the merchants, affiliate programs, and the affiliates. Joining an affiliate network benefits both merchants and affiliates. Affiliate networks allow affiliates the ability to search through various merchant affiliate programs and join them in one place. They also allow merchants to reach a larger audience and promote their business to all the affiliates in the network.
There are vital factors to consider while selecting among the best affiliate networks:
- Make sure the affiliate network has a lot of merchants in your chosen niche.
- Try to join the one which is 100% free to join.
- Go for the one which has high levels of customer support.
- Join an affiliate network with high paying merchants to earn high commissions from your sales.
Some of the best Affiliate Networks are as below:
- eBay Network
- Rakuten LinkShare
- Warrior Plus
- Commission Junction
Affiliate Marketing Channels:
To get results for the products or services you are trying to promote, the following marketing channels can be adopted:
- Create great content – Create engaging content and follow best practices of content marketing. Your post should reflect an inside out review that enthrallingly promotes the product or service and drives traffic to the seller’s site.
- Use effective SEO techniques – Practice best SEO strategies and drive quality traffic from search engines.
- Use Paid Campaigns – Apart from gaining organic traffic via SEO and social media networks, you can also get paid traffic via paid ad campaigns on platforms like Facebook, Google Ads, and other ad networks.
- Email List – Having a list of email subscribers within your niche can help you drive more conversions. Your audience will be more inclined to buy from your suggestions once you’ve built up trust with them to keep the money rolling in from affiliate sales.
- Leverage the Power of Niche Influencers – Influencer marketing is getting popular in recent years. These days many brands choose to work with many social influencers and bloggers in their niches. Influencers have an honest relationship with their followers. They can effectively get their audience to trust your brand and convince them to use your products or services.
- Optimize Your Product Pages for Conversions – Optimized product pages can boost your affiliate marketing strategies and help you retain customers. You need to ensure things like the site loads fast, the display is impressive with high-quality product photos, engaging product description with enough information to help your customers buy the product they want. Also clearly feature customer reviews to build trust.
Benefits of being an affiliate marketer:
- Work from any part of the world – You do not need to travel for work or anything.
- No investment – You do not have to make any investments and are risk-free.
- Work without employees – You do not need to hire any employees to do your business; you can earn on your own.
- Reach a wide range of customers – Reach a wide range of customers through affiliate marketing, no matter where they may be located.
How to become a successful affiliate marketer?
- Stay Consistent – It is essential to be consistent when you are doing affiliate marketing. You should keep the efforts up and not do it for the sake of it.
- Make a good name in your niche – When you build a good reputation in your niche, people will trust you more and will be more willing to buy from your website.
- Learn about the products you are selling – It is essential to know about the products you are selling. When you know about every product which is there on your website, it will help you to offer better to the customers.
Affiliate marketing, you need to realize that it can’t happen overnight. You need to choose the right niche, best affiliate programs & networks, channels, and affiliate marketing strategies to boost conversions. You’ll be able to engage your audience, convert passive readers into active consumers, and enhance your paycheck one click at a time following the tips included in this blog.