Affiliate Marketing is One of The Best Ways to Make Money Online
Affiliate marketing is not hard to get started in giving how it doesn’t cost very much to start your affiliate website.
Even more, some beginner affiliates start their affiliate marketing journey without owning a website. But I don’t recommend that path for beginners because it’s not a viable long term plan for your affiliate marketing success.
Perhaps the most important factor that can shape your whole business plan is how much money you are willing to invest.
You need basic expenses which include:
- Website Hosting ($50 a year)
- Domain Name ($10 a year)
This will allow you to start your affiliate website and start working on strengthening it to be able to generate sales.
Having affiliate website is also a great asset in itself because it allows you to try many areas of internet marketing (i.e. list building) and in turn you will find yourself evolving and gaining tons of experience that will help you succeed.
Affiliate Marketing Tools for Beginners
As a beginner affiliate, you need the help of various tools that can help you build a strong affiliate website.
These tools can help you compensate for the lack of a budget since most of them there are free trials or alternatives.
- Microsoft Word (free trial of MS Office here)
- Snagit (download free trial here)
- Microsoft Excel (free trial of MS Office here)
You need Microsoft word for when you are writing content on your affiliate website and especially when writing product reviews.
If you are like me, not a native English speaker, then it’s a must, because it corrects basic grammar and does spell checking for you.
Snagit is a tool that takes screenshots of anything on your screen. Sometimes you will need to take a screenshot of something on your affiliate product’s sales copy and add it to your product review page.
Another great feature of Snagit is that it allows you to record videos of anything you want. So, if you want to make a video review of the product, you can record it with Snagit and export the file to upload it to YouTube for example.
You might be surprised to see Excel here since it’s usually used for accounting purposes or data storage and management.
But since 2007, Microsoft added a nifty text design tool that you can use to create a very eye-catching headlines and titles that are proven most effective on product review pages.
After you open Excel, head over to the “Insert” tab and click “Text Box”
Then after writing your headline or any text, you need to select your text and go to the “Format” tab
And the neat thing is that you can now use Snagit to take a screenshot of your designed text and save it to upload it to your affiliate website.
These tools, when combined, can save you tons of startup costs and use this money on advertising instead.
Build your Affiliate Website
At this point, you should have your tools ready and your website up and running. The next step is turning it into a real affiliate site.
Most affiliates create their website as a blog, and they sell their affiliate products by writing review posts, and this is a realistic choice for beginner affiliates.
To setup a blog on your website you should go with WordPress platform since most web hosting companies allow you to install your WordPress blog with a click of a button and without prior technical knowledge.
Once you got your WordPress blog all setup you need a good and unique theme because if you are going to use the default theme that WordPress gives you, your affiliate website will not look unique.
You better buy a premium WordPress theme with a design matching your product and then install it on your WordPress affiliate site. Installing these themes on your blog is easy. Just head to the Dashboard of your blog and you will find “Themes” under the “Appearance” tab
After clicking “Themes”, you will find the “Upload Theme” button that allows you to upload your theme file.
The next step now would be to start writing blog posts on topics of your niche.
Don’t start by filling out your blog with product reviews just yet. You need first to provide your visitors with quality and informative content to establish your authority and build your reputation of being an expert in your niche.
You need to write your blog posts with SEO in mind because writing SEO optimized posts will bring you organic traffic from Google, which could result in affiliate sales particularly in the early stages of your affiliate website.
To find keywords that can bring you some traffic and also help you find writing ideas, go to Google’s keyword tool and type in your niche keyword:
It is best to pick long tail keywords with 100-400 searches; these are keywords that are easy to rank for, and you won’t find many affiliates trying to rank for them and crowding you.
Find Affiliate Products to Promote
There are many affiliate networks to offer hundreds of products to promote. Usually, affiliate networks are free to sign up for, so you need to create a free affiliate account on these networks.
Clickbank is a great affiliate network that offers tons of high paying affiliate products, and while they are not the only ones (others are CJ.com, Amazon), they are still perfect for beginner affiliates as they have various tools to help you promote any product they have.
Clickbank also lists their products in a categorized manner so you can easily find products in your niche.
Finding affiliate products can be challenging for beginner affiliates because many circumstances determine the profitability of any product.
The price of the product should not be the only factor you use to pick your affiliate product, granted it means higher affiliate commission, but it doesn’t guarantee high sales volume.
The product needs to be of high quality and good reputation because high-quality products usually translate into lower refund rates.
One way to determine the quality of any product is doing a simple Google search for “PRODUCTNAME/URL inurl:forum”
Google will scan forums and will give you the ones with customers who gave their opinion on the product (i.e. testimonials).
If the product has many negative feedbacks, then you should avoid promoting it, but on the other hand if you find real testimonials you can even use them on your product review page.
Real testimonials for any product will increase your sales conversion rates because people like products with an excellent reputation.
Affiliate marketing for beginners can look intimidating, but that shouldn’t be a downside to you, instead, look at it as a challenge.
Many affiliate marketing blogs and courses (i.e. affset.com) can help you eliminate that fear factor, and you will find as the time goes by how easy it is. Just take it one step at a time.
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