Read these 21 Affiliate Marketing Information Tips tips to make your life smarter, better, faster and wiser. Each tip is approved by our Editors and created by expert writers so great we call them Gurus. LifeTips is the place to go when you need to know about Affiliate Marketing tips and hundreds of other topics.
Gone are the days when you could quickly throw a site up with some affiliate marketing ads and expect to sit back and start cashing the checks. Nowadays, the competition is more intense and site visitors have higher quality standards than before. Here are a few affiliate marketing tips that can be beneficial:
• Provide content that is useful so people will bookmark your site and return.
• Learn a bit about search engine optimization to help drive traffic to your site
• Provide a regular newsletter so your visitors know when to return.
• Join a group like ValueClick or Linkshare so you can promote multiple companies' products under one umbrella
• Join some online forums and attach your web site URL to your signature line (make sure you participate and not just spam the group)
Some people believe they can just throw some affiliate ads up on a web site, quit working, and reap the benefits. This is a fallacy! Here are some affiliate tips that can show you the correct procedure:
• Always remember that it's "marketing"
• Remember that people can buy online from anyone--you have to make them want to buy from your site
• Offer lots of quality content so people will bookmark your site and return
• Learn about search engine optimization and make it work for you
• Learn why people buy, what attracts them, and what turns them off
• Study other successful affiliate marketing sites and see what they're doing that you're not
• Remember that things change constantly--don't just build a site and ignore it for months on end –this will not produce the maximum possible income
A good affiliate ebook provides useful and current content in a timely manner. Ebooks vary in length and professionalism. Affiliate ebooks are sold in a variety of formats (although PDFs are perhaps the most common). Generally, when someone buys an ebook, they are emailed the PDF file or are directed to a dynamic URL (which will only exist for a certain number of days after payment). A similar system is to send a username and password that is only good for a few days. Make sure that your ebook reads well both online and offline. You can even embed hyper links, if appropriate, which are useful when people are reading your book online.
Joining an affiliate program can be a great way to jumpstart your affiliate income. By signing up for a program such as LinkShare or ValueClick, you gain access to hundreds of different merchants with affiliate programs. These companies offer many affiliate marketing tips to help you succeed and your success is their success. Some of them combine payments from different merchants so you get one check each month rather than having to keep track of multiple checks. They also notify you about specials that different merchants are offering and keep you in touch with the different marketing campaigns available.
*Joining an affiliate program is free and provides many benefits.
Affiliate marketing is when one business pays another for generating traffic, leads, or sales. On the Internet, the affiliate sites host banner ads, text links, and graphics that entice visitors to click on them and visit the sponsor site. The sponsor site keeps track of how many visitors come from each affiliate site and what they do when they get there.
Emails are forms of communication that speak volumes about your company and how it is run. Make sure that you emails give the right message. Many companies spend tons of money on marketing materials and then send out boring, mediocre emails that don't do them justice. Here are some useful tips on communicating well through affiliate marketing emails:
• Establish an appropriate tone of voice to communicate your affiliate information (this will be your company's voice so don't take it lightly)
• When sellers initially sign up to become affiliates, send them welcoming emails providing helpful tips on how to get started
• Set up an auto responder so you can respond quickly and easily to sellers
*There are two main audiences that affiliate marketing books are targeting: merchants and affiliates.
• Affiliate books geared toward merchants provide information on what the affiliates need and what they bring to the table. They also provide information on successful commission structures, tracking options, and more.
• Affiliate books (or affiliate ebooks) aimed at the affiliate publisher give instruction on writing good content, natural search engine optimization, paid search engine inclusion, and more general marketing ideas.
“Conversion rate” is the term marketers use to keep track of how many site visitors do something. The definition of "do something" is dependent on the marketing campaign being run. Affiliate program information, such as conversion rate, is essential to understand. If you're getting people to click through to the merchant site but none of them are buying anything (converting to customers) that doesn't benefit the merchant. Play with the wording, design, and layout of your pages and ads and find out which has the best conversion rate.
*Whether you become a Commission Junction affiliate or join some other affiliate network, be careful when selecting the merchants for whom you advertise.
Your web site's reputation and popularity will be partially dependent on keeping your visitors happy. Check out merchant web sites and make sure you think they're going to be successful (your success depends not just on sending people to the merchant site, but on the merchant itself).
There are several affiliate magazines that address the unique interests of the affiliate entrepreneur. These magazines profile successful affiliates and have interviews with merchants and affiliate network managers.
Affiliate magazines provide in-depth articles with affiliate information to help readers learn the tricks of the trade so they might maximize their affiliate income. In addition, search engine optimization, pay-per-click ideas, and other income-producing and traffic-producing strategies can also be learned.
When you sign up with an affiliate network, for example Commission Junction, you should take advantage of all the tools and advice they have to help make you successful. You might be tempted to sign up for all the merchants in the network but you should pick and choose those merchants that make sense for your site. In other words, don't try to sell toasters on a web site about cars.
*Place the ads carefully so they are available to your site visitors but not intrusive or annoying.
If you've got multiple articles and several PDF documents available, make sure you've got one page on your web site that lists all of this affiliate program information and makes it easily accessible. Consider adding a link on your home page that can direct rushed visitors to this page (this type of simple efficiency will draw visitors back to your site). When you provide quality information on your affiliate site though ebooks, consider the viral aspect. People might share this information with friends, family, or coworkers who will potentially visit your site as well.
The cost of the original document creation is a small price to pay for the potential exposure you may receive. Making printable information available is a great way to start a chain reaction that can get your site noticed.
*Good affiliate marketing has a lot to do with good web site design. Read and follow the guidelines for making your site usable and accessible and keep your web site, as well as access to it, up-to-date.
One way to keep people on your site is to create a custom error page. When people try to get to your site by clicking an old link and see the standard "page not found" message (called a 404 error), many will assume that the site is down or has been removed. As a result, they're likely to click away and visit a different site, causing you to lose potential affiliate income. When you instead present them with a page that looks like your site (providing them with your navigation and a specific message directing them to your main pages), however, you'll regain that traffic you would have otherwise lost.
Commission Junction is a performance based affiliate program. You can sign up for the Commission Junction affiliate program, select the merchants you would like to advertise for, and place their advertisements on your web site. CJ online takes care of tracking the commission you are owed and paying you. They, in turn, provide reports to the merchants to help them capitalize on their pay per click advertising campaign. They will also work to resolve any conflicts between you, the publisher, and the merchant.
Networks like the Commission Junction network typically offer a lot of guidance to both the merchant and the publisher. The more money you make and the more sales the merchant makes, the happier everyone is.
* Books on affiliate marketing can be expensive but not as expensive as diving into affiliate marketing without first being properly informed about what it entails.
When choosing a book on affiliate marketing, make sure that you do your research. These books can be pricey so you'll want to make an informed decision. There are countless affiliate books available and you can find many of them in the Internet Marketing section of your local bookstore. You can also buy affiliate ebooks online. When you are selecting one make sure that it has impressive reviews and that the author is a recognized authority on the matter.
Even people with successful affiliate programs can benefit from books on the subject as the industry is constantly changing. It is important to keep up with the trends and competition.
Merchants need to provide affiliate information in a clear and straightforward manner. Any limitations in terms of content that is allowed on an affiliate site should be described (for example, many affiliate programs restrict sites from posting adult or gambling content).
Affiliate program information should specify the exact commissions paid out, minimum payment threshold, and when payment will be made. A special affiliate ebook to help affiliates get the most out of a program might also be offered. Insight into typical customer profiles can help with target marketing.
In addition to writing longer affiliate e books, consider writing shorter pamphlet-length documents. These pamphlets may cost less than a full-length affiliate ebook but the total sale of a whole set of e-docs price has the potential to rake in more dough than one e-book.
Bundling these abbreviated pamphlets into sets and offering them for a discounted rate (offering one e-doc for $5 or 4 for $15) can boost their sell-ability.
*It is a good idea to give away a sample e-doc--potential customers can download the short e-doc for free and if they like what they read, they'll come back and buy more.
An online newsletter can provide a tremendous boost to your affiliate marketing income. If you're going to create one, however, make sure that you do it correctly:
• Follow the anti-spam laws.
• Give site visitors an easy way to subscribe
• Don't ask for too much information up front (or people will hesitate to subscribe)
• Provide entertaining and/or useful ideas, as appropriate to your niche
• Consider offering a free gift of some kind (perhaps an e-book about something related to your niche) to increase subscription rates
Your goal is to get people to go to your web site, so don't put all the content in the newsletter. Instead, create a page (or multiple pages) containing all of the content. In the newsletter, use a snappy attention-getting headline in the first paragraph of your article. Then, have a "read more" link that goes to your web site. Track which articles get the most click-throughs so you can learn what people want---and give them more of it. And, don't forget to encourage subscribers to forward your newsletter to their friends.
Getting your site visitors to tell others about your site is a great promotion tool that costs you nothing. Consider collecting a bunch of tips related to the content of your site and giving the book away on your site, with affiliate information embedded in it. This is a great way to help your site gain recognition. Before jumping the gun on this, however, review the content you will be giving away and make sure that it is something people will refer to and want to share. If you are successful, they'll pass it along to their various acquaintances who will hopefully visit your site to see what other useful items you have available.
*Have the e-book mimic your site in terms of layout so that people who have only seen the book will feel familiar with your site when they first visit.
Affiliate program information should clearly communicate the benefits involved with being an affiliate. Affiliates don't need to worry about inventory, fulfilling orders, or collecting payment (merchants handle the whole process once the visitor arrives on the merchant site). Merchants also manage the whole customer service process. Affiliate program information should make clear that this is a mutually beneficial process. Merchants provide the leads, fulfill the orders, and pay out a percentage of the sale.
There are many ways to sign up to be an affiliate partner with a site. Some companies manage their own affiliate programs. If this is the case, you need to sign up with them directly (if you know a company has an affiliate program, look on their web site for sign-up instructions). Other companies use someone like ValueClick or LinkShare to manage their affiliate programs for them (these companies provide affiliate marketing tips, payment consolidation services, advertising recommendations, and other services to both the sponsor site and the affiliate site). Affiliate marketing is a growing business as companies realize how profitable it can be for them to participate.
|Jennifer Mathes, Ph.D.|