Affiliate marketing has become a good path for many solo entrepreneurs, content creators, and bloggers. If you’re just starting out, the idea of affiliate marketing might sound like an interesting source of revenue.
It is a performance-based marketing skill in which a dealer, typically an online one, rewards a website with a commission for each customer referred via the website’s promotional activities. The website often called an affiliate, it will only get paid when their promotion results in a transaction.
Anyone who does affiliate marketing is a salesperson for an outside company. As the salesperson, the affiliate marketer never carries any of the products himself. Instead, he sends people to the company, and when these people purchase something from that company, the sale is attributed to him and he receives the amount of a percentage of the sale.
Benefits of affiliate marketing
affiliate marketing is a method for you to earn money online by promoting products, websites, businesses, or services and getting commissions(according to percentage) for every successful sale.
The most common examples of this are the referral link whereby you as a publisher put a link on your website or blog, which then takes the user to another site. If he buys something, you’ll get a decide commission from that purchase.
There are other variations of this – asking a user to perform some kind of action like signing up, getting email addresses or completing forms. Basically, you can expect to use a unique link of some kind for an affiliate service or product.
As for the commission amount, it depends on the affiliate program itself. Some might give a fixed amount for every conversion while some give you a percentage of the sale.
Tracking the conversions can be done in various ways. Some use a link with a code that’s only unique to you to track where the conversion comes from. Others might give you a unique “coupon code” that users can use which lets them track conversions.
Affiliate Marketing Types
There are two types of affiliate marketing:-
- Offline affiliate marketing
2. Social media affiliate marketing
Not all companies have affiliate marketing programs; some have decided that this type of marketing is not a suitable option for them. This is because there are considerations that need to be taken into account both for the company and the potential affiliate marketer.
To start your affiliate marketing journey, you need to:
- Settle on a niche market. You have a better chance of being successful if you focus on a niche market.
- Look up affiliate products and services that are related to your niche market. Research on the program’s reputation and whether they take care of their customers and affiliates.
- Figure out how you going to promote the affiliate products or services. The easiest way is definitely through a blog or a website. However, you can use other methods such as email list and promoting the affiliate products to your subscribers.
- Another way would be to use social media platforms such as Instagram, Facebook, or Twitter.
- Research and learn some Internet marketing strategies for effective ways to share your website, blog, or affiliate links.
- Since you’ll be making money from home, it might be a good idea to look into business licenses and business laws in your area to ensure that your business is legal.
Who are the affiliate networks?
An affiliate network acts as an intermediary between the merchants and their affiliates. In some cases, a network is not necessary, but some companies choose to work with a network to add a layer of trust.
The network manages the relationship and provides third-party checks and balances. Third-party checks can be important because they bring down fraud rates.
Some merchants choose to work with an affiliate network because they lack the time or resources to report, track, and manage payments to the affiliates. They might also choose to work with multiple affiliates or publishers within the affiliate network.
Terms Used in Affiliate Marketing
Here, we have put affiliate marketing terms to help beginners:
1. Account Manager:- It is the affiliate network representative who is your point of contact with the network for any missing reports, queries and doubts regarding an affiliate program.
2. Advertiser:- This is the individual or company that creates the services or products that you promote as an affiliate marketer. An advertiser is more commonly referred to as the Merchant, which is why we have used the term ‘Merchant’.
3. Affiliate Link:-
How will the merchant come to know that the customer who landed on their page and bought something came through your site? Through the affiliate link provided to you by the merchant. The affiliate link could be of a specific product or of a web page, but it has a unique tracking code, which is specifically assigned to you, added in it.
So when a customer clicks on this affiliate link on your site and lands on the merchant’s site, the unique tracking code in the link helps the merchant identify that the customer came through your site.
The affiliate link helps you and the merchant keep track of the leads, sales, clicks, installs that were generated through you.
4. Affiliate Agreement:- The agreement between the merchant and the affiliate marketer regarding the affiliate relationship. It spells out the rules, roles, legalities, and responsibilities of the bond on both sides.
5. Banner Ad:- A graphical ad that an affiliate puts on their website to advertise a merchant.
6. Conversion:- Getting a user to take a specific, desired action. It could be buying a product or service, filling out a form, signing up for an email list or whatever the intended goal may be.
7. Creative:- A creative is promotional tool advertisers (merchants) use to make visitors click and take action. Examples of creatives are badges, towers, pop-ups, text links, email copy, banners etc.
Jumping into the world of affiliate marketing can be repressive if you’re completely new. But, just like any other business, you’ll need to put in the good work if you really want to be successful in affiliate marketing.