What is Affiliate Marketing?
“Affiliate Marketing is a term used to describe the practice of promoting products or services online, generating a sale and earning a commission payment”
If you have landed on this page, then you are probably like myself fairly new to Affiliate Marketing. I have attempted to put together a brief and informative overview for anyone who is interested in learning about Affiliate Marketing.
If someone asked me the question of what does Affiliate Marketing mean 6 months ago, I would have probably stared blankly at the person, and replied let me Google that quickly. Fast forward 6 months, and I am now a full time blogger, promoting affiliate products on my website, creating regular blog articles, and earning commissions from sales.
Brief History of Affiliate Marketing
Prior to the introduction of the world wide web, or let’s say pre-internet days, you could argue that affiliate marketing was already in existence. There are many examples still in existence today were existing customers are offered a discount where they recommend a friend, for example in hairdressing salons, and gym members.
With the onset of the internet things started to change rapidly, especially advertising. Companies marketing strategies changed dramatically, using the internet to promote product information, reviews and recommendations.
One of the first major pioneers of affiliate marketing was Amazon, who launched its Associates Programme in 1996.
Advertiser, Publisher and Consumer
Affiliate Marketing can be best described as relationships formed between three parties;
The Advertiser can best be described as a company who sells online products such a clothing, electronics, auto parts, flight tickets, or an insurance broker, selling insurance policies. If you pay other people to assist you selling and promoting your business you are an advertiser.
The Publisher is somebody or a company who promotes advertiser’s products or services and in turn earns commissions from any sales generated from their website.
The Consumer is the person who sees an advertisement on the publisher’s website, and clicks a link which in turn takes them to the advertiser’s website to complete the final transaction process.
Do I Need Any Special Skills To Get Started?
Absolutely not, you do not need to be a specialized writer or have any special qualifications to get started.
One of the main attractions for me is that you can literally work from anywhere as long as you have an internet connection and a tablet or computer.
There are numerous ways of getting started with affiliate marketing, too many to list if I’m honest. Just type the following words into your search engine “how to get started in affiliate marketing”. I will save you the trouble see the screenshot below of the number of search results returned from this search, yes you are reading it correctly 26,400.000
You can find a lot of information, I mean a LOT and when you are getting started it can be very confusing. Combined with the inevitable amount of non-ethical companies/persons, or scams it is nothing short of a mine field.
Step By Step Guide
Here is a very basic overview of the steps that you will need to follow to get your online business up and running;
- Create a website, this is the easy part, seriously you don’t need any tech skills at all. Website builders are readily available on the internet, some actually provide step by step instruction and training.
- Web hosting simply means a service that allows your website or web page to be viewed in the internet.
- A domain is the address of your website, that people type in to their browser search engines.
- Choose a theme or subject matter (niche) of your website, this is usually something that is a passion, interest, or hobby of yours.
- Write blog articles (content) and publish on your website, attract people (traffic) to your website.
- Sign up with affiliate programs and promote advertiser’s products or services and in turn earn commissions from any sales.
At this stage I have intentionally kept this list simple to avoid any confusion.
How Much Money Can I Make With Affiliate Marketing?
This leads me nicely into the next question, how long will it take to start earning commissions. There is no correct answer to this question, as their are to many variables involved and of course every individual is different.
- Success really depends on how committed you are to making it work, the same can be said about any business.
- Also how passionate you are about your website, your visitors and brand.
- If you stay committed and are willing to put in the hard work and extra hours to learn everything along the way to become a subject matter expert in your niche, you can get lucky and start earning commissions right from the start however generally it takes anywhere from 6 months to a year to gain consumer confidence.
- The key is to remain patient, dedicated and focused and success will eventually happen.
- The commission rates and levels of the advertiser’s products you promote, commissions can vary widely.
Do You Want To Know More?
When I was getting started I found that the information available on affiliate marketing was a little overwhelming, I struggled a great deal with understanding even the basic concepts of affiliate marketing, perhaps I’m just a slow learner:) Everything I read was seemingly written by experienced bloggers, and established affiliate marketers, who were sharing their success stories. What I’m trying to say is that I felt the information gap was too wide for someone who is starting out from basically zero and needing to gain, not only knowledge but confidence, ensuring that their next step is the correct one, and avoiding any potential scams along the way.
If you feel like you are ready to take the next step ==>click here for some more in depth information
By writing this article as a relatively new affiliate marketer myself, I hope that I can reach out through my writing style to anybody genuinely looking to get a foothold in the affiliate marketing industry and build a successful online business.
I have attempted to cover off on all the basics of affiliate marketing in this article and provide you with a solid foundation from which you hopefully can build on.
If you have any, I mean ANY, questions about affiliate marketing please leave your questions below and I will be more than happy to help you out. I will usually reply within a day 🙂
Author: Martin Johnston
Publish Date: 12 August 2018