Affiliate marketing is still one of the best—and easiest—ways to make money on-line. But let’s not get ahead of ourselves.
What, precisely, is affiliate marketing? It’s possible to visit a site, read everything on it that promises the sun and the moon, and still not know what affiliate marketing is. Affiliate marketing is when you sell or promote a product on your website with hopes that someone will purchase that product after clicking on the link on your site.
Say you blog about dog training and you recommend Smith’s Flea Collars on your blog and there happens to be a Smith’s Flea Collar ad on your page. If a visitor clicks on that ad and buys a flea collar, you get paid a commission. It’s as simple as that. The real trick is not getting people to click on the ad, but getting people to your website so they’ll click on your ad.
That’s where the real skill to affiliate marketing comes in: You want to drive as many people to your website as possible. While anyone who has been looking at affiliate marketing knows, the opportunities on the internet are endless. The truth is, just like in any business opportunity, you must do your homework before you decide to sign on with any affiliate program. Affiliate marketing typically involves little or no money to set up. You don’t have to have any inventory stored in your garage or attic.
Because affiliate marketing involves someone going to your site and clicking on an ad you have there, it’s tough to get rich unless you’re really good at getting people to visit your website. That’s how the people who are getting rich with affiliate marketing are getting rich: they are driving thousands of people to websites and enticing them to click on ads with their content. How do you get people to visit your website? Put something up that you think will interest someone.
Nowadays, you don’t have to do it on your own. There are many different affiliate programs out there, looking for partners, looking to drive more traffic to their website and yours. Some of the top affiliate programs are those that are tied to specific subjects, such as electronics, lifestyle, telecommunications and others. You should probably get involved in a niche that is interesting to you.
As in any business, do your homework and read up on the affiliate programs that are out there. Even though the investment can be small, the idea is to make money, not simply throw up a website. Be ready to do some heavy-duty marketing, because ultimately, if you can’t sell your website, no one is going to visit it, and those clicks you rely on for your paycheck just aren’t going to happen.