When beginning your affiliate marketing career, you’ll want to cultivate an audience that has very specific interests. This allows you to tailor your affiliate campaigns to that niche, increasing the likelihood that you’ll convert. By establishing yourself as an expert in one area instead of promoting a large array of products, you’ll be able to market to the people most likely to buy the product.
Creating blog content is a very useful and effective way of consistently building content on a site. When creating blog posts, it's a good idea to do some keyword research to figure out what it is that your audience is interested in and searching for online. Also, be sure to research competitors, forums and social media to narrow down on topics for your blog. 
Hey Karen, thanks for reaching out! You’d first have to get the small businesses to join a network like CJ, Shareasale, or Impact Radius. Once they are considered an affiliate merchant, you can find them in the platform and join their affiliate program. I don’t typically recommend affiliate for small businesses or artists, as you need a good amount of traffic to make any money. To make money quickly, I’d start by developing a website based on your expertise and personal brand, and selling a high-end consulting service to B2B clients. Feel free to check out my start here page or email course to get the details :). Thanks again for reaching out and hope to talk to you soon.
Same here, this post kind of fell from the sky at such a great time. Been building a great community of readers over the years but reached a point where I’m losing money maintaining the site and newsletter. As you said, the ads don’t bring much -ironically I use Adblocks too but affiliate marketing always seemed like a weird and opaque subject. I’ve read many of Chris Guillebeau’s books in the last few months (this is how I discovered your site actually!) and I didn’t realize he had affiliate links for instance. Your post opened up a new window of possibility for me. Still need to process everything and do the work behind but a big thank you to you Sean!
Hi Ray, thank you for your help the other day, I’m making a progress slowly but nicely. But I just read this publication and now I really understood why you didn’t recommend me to try a traffic selling business. It all makes sense now! It’s not only difficult to set up but too many problems by products and people. If they report me as a spammer I won’t be able to grow as an online marketer any longer. I really see what you mean.
Anybody can become an affiliate. All that you need to have is probably an email address and everybody has that, right? From there, you need for find affiliate programs that you can join. Becoming an affiliate is easy. The difficult part comes in trying to make it really work. Though thousands join the various affiliate marketing programs that are out there, only a few succeed in making it a viable source of income. So, how does one become an affiliate?
Vendors engage the services of affiliates to do marketing of the product on their behalf. But how do vendors and affiliates meet? Well, vendors can engage affiliates directly to sell their products and services. Another option is for vendors to join affiliate networks. These are companies whose sole purpose is to serve as the meeting place for vendors and affiliates. The advantage of an affiliate network is that a vendor can find thousands of relevant affiliates there without having to run around looking for them all over the internet.
This is the standard affiliate marketing structure. In this program, the merchant pays the affiliate a percentage of the sale price of the product after the consumer purchases the product as a result of the affiliate’s marketing strategies. In other words, the affiliate must actually get the investor to invest in the product before they are compensated.
Hi Ray! Thank you for such an informative article. I am hoping to make a passive income from affiliate marketing, I’m willing to do anything that experts suggest, and just found your site. I haven’t decided my niche yet but I find your site so helpful. I’m trying to get my head around this weekend and will start something. I have some questions if you don’t mind,
Hey Karen, thanks for reaching out! You’d first have to get the small businesses to join a network like CJ, Shareasale, or Impact Radius. Once they are considered an affiliate merchant, you can find them in the platform and join their affiliate program. I don’t typically recommend affiliate for small businesses or artists, as you need a good amount of traffic to make any money. To make money quickly, I’d start by developing a website based on your expertise and personal brand, and selling a high-end consulting service to B2B clients. Feel free to check out my start here page or email course to get the details :). Thanks again for reaching out and hope to talk to you soon.
Hey there, sorry my very hungry blog ate your first comment. I would say that for new bloggers, my #1 tip is to focus less on writing and more on scaling. I’ve seen a lot of new bloggers worry about every word they write and spend so much time on every article. My advice is to get your posts live and start focusing on real-world relationships. Guest posts and backlinks will help your Domain Authority and traffic 100x more than just writing new content. Plus, since blog posts need to be updated over time, just hit the publish button and worry about making the article perfect later. 🙂 Good luck on your journey. My email list has a 7-day course that goes over my strategy in detail.

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Merchants receiving a large percentage of their revenue from the affiliate channel can become reliant on their affiliate partners. This can lead to affiliate marketers leveraging their important status to receive higher commissions and better deals with their advertisers. Whether it’s CPA, CPL, or CPC commission structures, there are a lot of high paying affiliate programs and affiliate marketers are in the driver’s seat.
Another network you should consider when it comes to promoting products as an affiliate is Amazon.com. As you may already know, just about any physical product can be sold on Amazon.com. Though products on Amazon generally offer lower commissions than their digital product counterparts, selling products on Amazon as an affiliate can be a much higher volume business and most people trust Amazon as a merchant, making it easier to sell products as an affiliate.
The downside is that Shopify is only appealing for people who have physical or digital products to sell and have a need to set up a Shopify store, including site hosting, payment processing, and all the other services offered by Shopify. This can significantly narrow the appeal for this affiliate program. But if you can distinguish yourself by educating people on how to use Shopify, how it can benefit their business, and/or make them money, you could potentially big money via the affiliate program. Add in the 2 x monthly fee commission rate, and landing just a few sales of their mid-tier and top-tier products can result in significant earnings.
Hi Ray. I have been invited to join a backlinking and social media promotion service. What do you think of them? I know backlinks can be important to rank in search engines but how many do you need? I have an account with Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Linkedin and Pinterest but I don’t use them regularly. Can a social media promotion service automatically post my affiliate links for me, they did not give me the detail?

Hi Kenny, no you shouldn’t be involved with spamming. If you receive an unsolicited email, either ignore it or report it 🙂 The basic ‘rule’ is (as you may have guessed it) to be as honest as you can and think about the benefit for the users and not to try to sell something unless you think it’s worth the money in their eyes. If you need any help in starting up, don’t hesitate to get back to me at any time. Thanks for your comment.
Well written article, I have learned new affiliate networks, that I didn’t have knowledge about. Affiliate marketing is one of the best ways to make big money online. Many people try it, but give up when sales don’t come, in my opinion, achieving success in affiliate marketing requires you to choose the right networks to promote, and have patience. Simple advice should be not to try to promote everything you come across, do research and test to find out what works best. Thanks for sharing this great article.
Most newbies in affiliate marketing make the mistake of registering with too many affiliate programs and try promoting everything they see. If this is the path you are treading, then it will overwhelm you and you won’t promote the products properly. Take time to understand the needs in the market and search for products that will go well with your site’s topic.
Great article as it gets me thinking about the various ways to monetize my sites. With that said, my biggest hurdle has been how to get started building traffic. You see articles all over the net talking about massive traffic techniques, but I’ve never really found a guide for a fresh blog/website and how to get to their first 100, 500, or 1,000 daily uniques. Of course writing consistent quality content is key, but writing alone an audience does not make. Any tips or articles to point us to? Thanks again Sean!
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