Some bloggers begin blogging with the main goal of monetizing and making money online. There are also a lot of bloggers who simply blog for free because they want to, but realize after a while that they could make money with their following. So, assuming you have a blog (or want to create one), this article will focus on affiliate marketing for bloggers and how to actually make some decent money online.
Affiliate Text Links Are Your Best Friends
How often do you click on a banner ad? Chances are, you can’t even remember. Why? Because banner ads, are like, soooo 1996 dude.
The truth is, these days banner ads are like click repellent. If you don’t want people to click on your affiliate ads, put a whole bunch of flashy and animated banners. That should ensure you never make a full time living online with blogging.
Sure, if you get enough people onto your blog and have a decent amount of traffic, a certain percentage of people will click on your banner ads, albeit a very low percentage. Sadly, this is the mistake so many bloggers make when they try to monetize through affiliate marketing. They download a plugin that will help them install banners all over their site and wait for the millions to come in. When that doesn’t happen, they throw up their arms and proclaim, “it’s just not possible to make money with a blog anymore!”
If you have a blog, you have a ton of content anyway. Strategically placing text links containing your affiliate code into articles is a much better way gain clicks without looking all spammy. This is one of the first things they teach you in the free Affilorama course (pssst! That’s an affiliate link. See what I did there?).
When you embed links like that, you will see a far higher click through rate (CTR) which will lead to more sales and more money in your pocket.
That’s not to say banners are entirely bad. You’ll notice there are some banners on this site, even. However, you’ll also notice that they are HIGHLY targeted to people who want to start affiliate marketing. You’ll also notice they have no animation and they don’t look like total spam. Just don’t rely on banners, because in-article text links will perform a whole heck of a lot better.
You’ll also notice some extremely simple ads the site. I’m finding that the more simple the ad, the better. Below is an example:
Start An Email List For Your Blog
Whether you already have a loyal following or you’re just starting out, make sure you begin building an email list as quickly as possible. You can use a service like Aweber to do that (note: that is NOT an affiliate link, it’s good to diversify your outbound links with non-affiliate links).
When you build an email list (that’s an internal link, another good way to diversify), you can then use that list in many ways. You can use it to get repeat traffic back onto your site, promote your social media pages, and from time to time, promote affiliate products and services that your list may be interested in.
So, how do you get people to join your list? About 10 years ago, it wasn’t all that difficult. You could simply have a sign up form that said “get notified when I post new articles!” and you would get some signups. These days, people’s inboxes are so flooded that they guard their email addresses a lot more.
The solution? Give them something for free. On this website, for example, I give out a very high quality e-book about starting an affiliate marketing business. They key here is to truly offer something of very high quality that your target audience will love, that way, when you send future emails you’ll get a higher open rate as they will know you’re offering something of quality.
It doesn’t just have to be limited to e-books, however. On my affiliate website DogFoodInsider.com, you’ll notice signup forms so people can be alerted to any dog food recalls that are issued. This is highly popular and provides a truly beneficial service to dog owners for free.
Make sure you treat your email list like the gold it is. Simply spamming them everyday without providing any real value to them is a sure way to not only lose subscribers, but make a lot of your following angry. So please use your email list responsibly!
Choose Your Offer Wisely
Before you ever join an affiliate program and promote a product or service, make 100% sure it is something you would purchase or recommend to a friend / family member. There are plenty of affiliate programs to choose from covering nearly any niche, so be selective and don’t just think about profits or commission percentages. Truly pick a product or service you believe in, then promote it with a good conscience!
Also, be sure you are targeting your ads. Once again, on this site, my affiliate offers are specifically for people who are trying to learn how to become affiliate marketers. I don’t promote weight loss products or hearing aids with good reason. You need to squeeze every click possible and the best way to do that is for your advertisements to seem as if they were targeted directly at each individual reader.
On my DogFoodInsider.com site, you may notice that I use Amazon as my affiliate referral and my affiliate links say things like “find out the current pricing for this dog food” or “read reviews from other dog owners here.” Once they are on the Amazon website, I get a commission if they make a purchase due to my referral. Pretty awesome.
How To Find The Best Affiliate Programs For Your Blog
This isn’t as hard as you might think. There are 10’s of thousands if not 100’s of thousands of affiliate programs out there covering all sorts of niche industries. For my dog food review website, I could easily find an affiliate program by going over to Google and typing in ‘dog food affiliate program’. If you go and do that now, you’ll see at least a dozen dog food related affiliate programs to choose from. Simply replace ‘dog food’ with whatever niche you want to search for. Chances are you’ll find something.
So, is it possible to use affiliate marketing for bloggers to monetize their sites? Absolutely! Is it easy? No. In order to truly succeed with affiliate marketing as a blogger you will need quite a bit of traffic on your website (hundreds if not thousands of visitors per day with a good click through and conversion rate). However, there are tons of people who make a full time living from blogging. If you really desire that to be the case for you, it’s entirely within your grasp. Keep blogging!