I would keep the experience very simple for now. Make it clean, easy to navigate, but don’t worry about backgrounds or graphical headers too much. You can worry about all of that later. For now, focus on your content until you’re getting a decent amount of traffic (at least 50-100 visitors per day, maybe more) and at that point I think it would be okay to start tweaking the design a little bit and working on the “branding” aspects a bit more.
I understand this article is dated June 2012. Since then (now being September 2012), there has been this huge debate over the Affiliate Nexus Law which has crushed my dreams of being able to make a decent side income through amazon and other merchants. I live in Georgia (Nexus Law has passed here) and Amazon and several other merchants have dropped their affiliates. What do newbies like myself do in such a scenario. I have not lost any money since I was on the verge of creating my site & starting my affiliate business. However, where do I go from here? What other ways can I make money online legit way? Please help.
Varies from not at all to hugely important. Social is a great way to drive traffic in the early days before google shows you love. It is also a great way to connect with a reader on a different medium whether that be through pictures (instagram), short news updates (twitter), solving problems that users are facing (quora/reddit), or videos (youtube) Not all social media is going to be relevant to your audience, but you could leverage any social medium on it's own to drive major traffic and to connect with an audience you might not otherwise be able to sell to just by appearing in google. And let's be realistic, diversification of traffic is important - if you are relying on a single source, and it dries up, you don't get paid.

The problem with affiliate marketing, like many other home business options, are the so-called gurus and get-rich-quick programs that suggest affiliate marketing can be done fast and with little effort. Odds are you've read claims of affiliate marketing programs that say you can make hundreds of thousands of dollars a month doing almost nothing ("Three clicks to rich!"). Or, they suggest you can set up your affiliate site, and then forget it, except to check your bank deposits.
So I asked the Marketing Consultant to lower the commission we pay to the affiliate network to 5 percent. I wasn’t surprised a week later when he told me that we still did $200,000 of sales through them in a week. I then asked him to lower the commission to 1 percent. Once again, the affiliates delivered $200,000 per week in sales. Whatever these affiliate sites were doing to drive sales to Kogan.com, it didn’t change as our commission to them was lowered by 90 percent. This defied general economics principles, so I started to get very skeptical.
Another way to find this information is to do a simple Google search. For example, one could place the following phrase into Google Search:  “(product name) + affiliate program”. (Replace “product name” with the name of the product you are promoting.) There is an interesting chrome addon called Affilitizer is available which makes this process easy.
While your site is still new, it's a good idea to start capitalizing on someone else's audience. Continue focusing on building your own content, but also considering writing content for a few big, high-traffic blogs that are relevant for your niche. By writing content for a bigger site, you are able to get in front of another audience and showcase your expertise on a particular topic. This will eventually lead to more traffic to your site, as well. 
When Tim Berners-Lee invented the hypertext webpage, he envisioned a world of shared information. It didn’t take long for businesses to realize that the web was a new shopping platform too. In fact, years before the web, in 1989, the first ever internet affiliate program was born when William J Tobin enlisted people to refer customers to PC Flowers, Inc. The company is considered the web’s first ever commercial success story, and it paved the way for today’s multi-billion dollar affiliate marketing industry.

There are other reasons that people don’t become successful in affiliate marketing, like jumping from one project to the next every couple of months because they have a new idea, getting “shiny object syndrome” where they just keep buying new products and trying new techniques, never really settling on one and giving it a fair shot, and so much more. Any number of these things can cause failure, but know in your heart and mind that affiliate marketing is definitely NOT a scam, and that you can achieve it as long as you keep working hard, learning, and trying new things.


15. AdCombo AdCombo is a CPA Marketing Network, that uses its own in-house technology, that allows you to customize advertising campaigns to reach your targeted audience throughout the globe. They aim at, and hit their target in, encouraging strategic lucrative partnerships between advertisers and publishers to monetize their traffic. AdCombo has offices and co-workings in 5 cities around the globe.
The education is often good, but do not fall for the part where they suggest that you promote their program. Not only is this a waste of time, since so MANY affiliates are already doing this, but they do not have the decency to discount the monthly fees even when you market them for your life trying to recruit future affiliates. They get tons of visibility online for FREE and you get nothing to very little back in return.
Totally agree with your opinion on affiliate marketing. I’m in the same space myself and can tell you what it feels like to earn $1000 commissions while literally sitting on the sofa watching TV. It is absolutely mind-blowing. High-ticket commissions are what sets apart the affiliate marketers that scale their business up to six or even seven figures to the ones that only make a few thousand a month. I run a website based on digital marketing an entrepreneurship. You should check out our affiliate program – it is guaranteed to blow your mind. 🙂
I want to do an “inspirational” post to help newbies see that affiliate marketing is a long-range game plan, not a “get rich quick” scheme. Looking for those willing to share how long it took to get the first affiliate sale and a bit of insight into how you did it. Of course, your name and your website/blog link will be included. You can share it here, or email me.
The most important part of affiliate marketing is not selling but helping your audience. By offering solutions you are building trust. People will buy from you only if they trust you. The more you try to sell the fewer sales you will make. If all you see at people is the chance to make $ then you are not going to achieve much. Anyone can offer their affiliate links and tell their visitors “click here” or “Buy Now”. But if that’s the only thing you want to do you are just sabotaging your own business.
Hi Tommy. I vet the programs listed on my site and eliminate the ones that people make complaints about. But its important for you to also use your due diligence when you choose a program. Google the name of the company followed by queries such as “complaints” and “fraud” and “scam” to see if people are making accusations. You can also contact their affiliate manager directly to ask questions. If you can’t locate an affiliate manager that is definitely a red flag. Finally, diversify into a few different companies so you can compare them. Hope this helps. Sincerely – Bill
It’s important to know where your traffic is coming from and the demographics of your audience. This will allow you to customize your messaging so that you can provide the best affiliate product recommendations. You shouldn’t just focus on the vertical you’re in, but on the traffic sources and audience that’s visiting your site. Traffic sources may include organic, paid, social media, referral, display, email, or direct traffic. You can view traffic source data in Google Analytics to view things such as time on page, bounce rate, geo location, age, gender, time of day, devices (mobile vs. desktop), and more so that you can focus your effort on the highest converting traffic. This analytics data is crucial to making informed decisions, increasing your conversion rates, and making more affiliate sales. 
Most affiliate companies operate on a similar principle. Wealthy Affiliate, for one, offer a free starter package that lets you access the affiliate programs, set up two websites, and get some assistance in figuring out the basics. They also offer a premium subscription service with more resources and more assistance, but you can wait until you know you enjoy the work and can make a profit from it before you go for the upgrade.
In the Affilorama lessons, we cover loads of different ways of getting traffic! Some of these methods are paid, such as PPC (pay-per-click) advertising, and some are free, like SEO (search engine optimization) but take a little more time and effort on your part. You can find more information on both of these traffic methods in "introduction to PPC" and "introduction to SEO."
Although it differs from spyware, adware often uses the same methods and technologies. Merchants initially were uninformed about adware, what impact it had, and how it could damage their brands. Affiliate marketers became aware of the issue much more quickly, especially because they noticed that adware often overwrites tracking cookies, thus resulting in a decline of commissions. Affiliates not employing adware felt that it was stealing commission from them. Adware often has no valuable purpose and rarely provides any useful content to the user, who is typically unaware that such software is installed on his/her computer.

Without hesitation (after some research), I bought her course. As an aside, I’m not one of those people who buys any and every thing that comes down the pike. I’ve bought enough online products that DIDN’T work that it takes a lot for me to shell out money. I’m pretty good at figuring out stuff, but the more I researched Michelle, the more impressed I was by her and her course.
Great stuff here Sean – thanks for all of these insights and sharing some best practices when it comes to affiliate marketing. I’ve never been comfortable giving it a shot, but after reading this post and your perspective on how and when to do it, I may just have to give it a try. Especially considering I’m already mentioning and recommending services and products on my site, I’m just not getting the potential rewards associated with doing so. Thanks again.
I try to stick with personable where possible. Why? Because people connect with people. People build trust and relationships with people. Do you love when you ring up customer service and have to sit through a computerized menu? Or do you prefer to speak to someone directly. Definitely the latter. My websites and topics allow me to write in a personable manner. Yours may not.
No matter how good your marketing skills are, you’ll make less money on a bad product than you will on a valuable one. Take the time to study the demand for a product before promoting it. Make sure to research the seller with care before teaming up. Your time is worth a lot, and you want to be sure you’re spending it on a product that is profitable and a seller you can believe in.
I was able to make my first online dollars through Amazon Affiliate sales… It was never much and in the beginning I was just excited to make $10 in a month, which was enough for a free ebook or two. With regular updates and link inclusions in my posts over time I was able to grow the number up to like $300 a month–which I was pretty happy with. Of course the payout rates are paltry compared to a sale of an info product like one from Unconventional Guides, etc. Thing is, people seem to be more open to purchasing physical products rather than information products…
I am surprised someone as experienced as you could be making such statements as Affiliate Marketers like myself are still making lots of money from it.You need to diversify your portfolio and set up multiple streams of income. Since you been in the game i presume you should have a sizeable email list that you have built up over those years. You need to concentrate on high ticket items and earn big commissions like myself rather than those $20,$30,$50 commissions. You should also try e-commerce as that is the money tree nowadays!
Upselling is a sales technique where the salesperson encourages a more expensive purchase by a customer by persuading them to get an upgraded version of an item or to purchase add-ons. Remember our food processor example? That food processor could probably be best used with a book of recipes, which also can be purchased at the same company’s website.
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