Okay, that’s enough hypothetical talk… how do you actually get started and become an affiliate marketer?
Well, first you’re going to need a product. In order to get this, you are going need to head over to a website such as Clickbank or Commission Junction. Another good one is JVZoo.
Here, you’ll be able to see a large selection of different products that have affiliate programs. Just scroll through and look for the ones you’re interested in. You’ll find that you can see some information regarding the different products, so try to look for things that are selling for a decent price and offer a good commission.
Some sites will let you see a rough number of sales, in which case you of course want to look for the items that are selling well.
Once you’ve identified the product you would like to promote, you then need to contact the owner. If you are successful, they’ll provide you with your link and you’ll be free to use that as you choose.
Something else to keep in mind here though, is that many affiliate products will include marketing materials along with them. Remember: if you are doing well, that means that the creator is doing well. They have every reason to want to see you succeed and as such, they will provide things like emails, a sales page, banner ads and other materials in many cases.
If you’re someone who is completely new to the world of marketing, then I highly recommend that you choose a product that offers these kinds of bonuses. This way, you can get up and running almost instantly by simply copying and pasting the materials you’ve got.
You should then see yourself sell in the same numbers: it’s the same product and the same marketing spiel… so there’s no reason that it shouldn’t work just as well.
Like I said before: this is literally a ‘copy and paste’ business model. Someone else already has the product selling well with a set system, all you are doing is copying the same system but making sure it’s your bank account that will receive the income.
Selling Physical Products and Services
While selling eBooks through platforms like JVZoo is an excellent way to ensure that you can keep the maximum profit, it also has its limitations. Despite what some other marketers might tell you, the most popular type of product online is still of the physical variety.
And this makes sense if you really think about it. How many people do you know who buy physical products? Pretty much everyone right? But then how many people do you know who would buy an ebook? Your Grandma might not (unless it’s through Kindle) because she doesn’t know how to use a PDF file. Likewise, your friend who doesn’t like reading probably wouldn’t either!
And that basically leaves you with a much smaller cut of the market.
So how do we go about selling physical products as an affiliate marketer? The most popular option is to become an Amazon Associate.
Amazon’s associate scheme is their version of an affiliate program and it’s a very tempting option for many marketers.
If you look up information on affiliate marketing, then you’ll likely find that the vast majority of it focusses on selling digital products through the likes of JVZoo, ClickBank and Commission Junction.
On Amazon, things are different. Amazon is already splitting the profits with the manufacturer, they have to pay for storage, shipping and postage and generally they can’t afford to offer you more than 4% or maybe 8% at a push.
This means you’ll have to sell a lot more items at much higher prices in order to turn a proper profit.
But does that mean you should rule Amazon Associates out? Not at all.
For starters, selling physical products is often much more profitable than selling digital products. Think about it: are you more likely to spend lots of money on something you can hold in your hands and show to friends, or something you have to read on a computer screen?
Better yet, Amazon is a recognized brand and a company people trust. That means they’re much more likely to buy from them – and they can buy with one click!
Amazon has a massive roster of products you can sell and that means there will be something relevant to go with nearly every article.
And finally, if someone clicks on your URL but ends up buying something else from Amazon… you still get paid! This can potentially result in a lot of earnings if someone were to – for example – buy a new computer and you were to get 8% of that. Even if you didn’t promote the product directly, as long as you sent the buyer to Amazon in the first place, you would earn that commission.
So, the best thing to do? Use both types of affiliate marketing! But just don’t leave Amazon out of the equation or you’ll be missing out!
In future chapters, you’ll discover how to promote Amazon products slightly differently, in order to get the most from them.
(Note: One limitation of Amazon Associates is that you can’t earn cash if you don’t live in the same country. In other words, if you are based in the UK, then you will need to send your customers to Amazon UK. You can still make sales through Amazon.com, but you’ll only be able to collect vouchers in exchange.)
Other Options for Selling Physical Products
Amazon is of course not the be-all and end-all when it comes to selling physical products. There are countless physical stores out there, as well as many manufacturers that will offer affiliate programs direct to marketers.
You might find that if you take the time to look around for other products, you’re able to find something that is much more directly relevant to the topic of your site (and thereby more likely to sell).
To find these affiliate programs, just try typing in your niche and then “affiliate program” when searching on Google. You can also find plenty of lists online for the best affiliate programs in each industry.
Another option is to direct a manufacturer or seller that doesn’t offer an affiliate program… and then to ask them if they would consider creating one for you. If you manage to do this successfully, you can strike up an exclusive deal and potentially get a large commission too.
Of course, for this to work, you need to be able to demonstrate that you have the reach and the influence to make it worth their while.
Another option is to try selling a service or a SAS (Software As a Service). This option is potentially the most lucrative!
The reason for this, is that many services will offer you a recurring commission. Let’s say that you manage to get someone to sign up to a gambling website. Some gambling sites will offer commission on all earnings from that customer for their lifetime with the brand!
Likewise, if you can convince someone to sign up with a hosting account, or to otherwise join a recurring service, then you will often find that you are offered a commission that is paid to you every month that they remain with that hosting company.
Of course, this might start as a small amount of commission. BUT it can then add up to a large amount of time. In a few years, you might have hundreds or even thousands of conversions, which will then earn you recurring income even if your site were to close down!