Friday, 14 June 2013

Guide To Affiliate Marketing

Affiliate Marketing
Whether you are adding affiliate links to an existing website or you are planning on building a website based around an affiliate program, affiliate marketing is an easy way to monetize your website.

If you are unfamiliar with the term, affiliate marketing is when a merchant offers a commission to members of their affiliate program each time a sale was referred from their website. Not only does affiliate marketing work with sales, but leads and other types of programs are available as well. Here is one examples of an affiliate website:

e-smoke-reviews.com

This electronic cigarette review website earns a commission for each sale that is sent to each individual e-cigarette company. Read below to find out how you can take advantage of affiliate programs and earn more money on your website.


Establish a Network

With the increase in social media platforms over the recent years, it has been more complicated to establish a presence and maintain a network on every one, but it does make it easy to get your website in front of people. Start with the most common social media platforms. I would recommend Facebook, Google+, Twitter and Pinterest as a good place to start.

The people in your network are your fans as well as the customers who will make you money from the affiliate program. Whatever your site is about, it is important to keep the content tailored to your readers' interests. This will not only keep them coming back for more information, but they will also be more likely to share things with their friends who have similar interests. This allows your network to keep growing and once you have started, it is important to keep the momentum going. The content on your website is what is going to be shared by your readers and others will only be interested if they see your site producing content that is of high quality.


Website

The quality of your website will greatly affect your ability to be successful. Also, your website does not have to be designed by an expert for it to be of high quality. A quality website will be one that uses a clean layout, is easy to navigate and can have specific information found easily by your readers. Along with those things, it is important to make sure that your website converts traffic into sales.

Affiliate programs use links on your website to track where a customer comes from so that you can receive commission on the sale. The placement of your affiliate links is another large factor in the success of your website. Every website is going to have a different purpose and there is no right or wrong spot to place affiliate links. You want the affiliate links to be in areas where your readers will click. Many affiliate programs offer their affiliates banners and other types of links that may work better for you. For example, if you do not want a random link on a certain page, you may opt to put a banner for your affiliate program in the sidebar. This way the reader is not distracted and turned off by your site because they are overwhelmed with links and advertisements that take away from the purpose of the website. Your readers are an important part to your success and you will need to keep them happy to see continued success. Again, one well placed link will be more beneficial than multiple links that take away from what made the website popular in the first place.

Like a website plastered with advertisements, a site with a large amount of affiliate links might come off as "spammy" and distract readers from your content. You need to balance the amount of affiliate links between having enough that they will be clicked and not cluttering the pages on your website.


Promotion

So now your website is set up with affiliate links and conversions are starting to come in. Now the next step is to promote your website further and continue to build your network to gain more readers. There are multiple ways to promote your website. Hopefully, you are producing excellent content and your readers are sharing it with others. This will give you more exposure without doing any more work and your site will gain new fans organically.

People who do not have any friends sharing your content are still potential customers and need a way to find your website. This is where Search Engine Optimization (SEO) comes into play and will be an integral part to growing your business. With effective SEO, targeted keywords will result in your website being ranked higher on the major search engines. Using the e-cigarette website above as an example, "e-cigarette reviews" is a keyword that I would like my website to be ranked for. This will allow people who are looking for certain information to find the things they are looking for on my website. By having an effectively optimized website, your business will be more likely to grow as new people will consistently be finding your website.

Different websites are built for different reasons and the promotion and marketing should reflect that. While every website needs to be optimized to rank well in search engines, there are other ways in which you can promote your website. The different social media platforms will also be an effective way to promote your website. The different social media networks each give different advantages and it is up to you to choose what to put your time into. A website selling art may be better off using Pinterest because they can show pictures of the art they are selling and have other people see it more than on something like Twitter. While this may work for an art website, a mostly content based website may benefit more from using Twitter and tweeting new posts and articles because images are not a main focus of the website.

The marketing of your website is important to keep your business going. This needs to be done through changing the way your pages are set up to rank higher in search engines, as well as in different areas of the Internet and other mediums. Again, having people share your content on their own is also important. Finding what is working most effectively will allow you to know where you need to put your efforts. Using different analytic tools will further enhance your ability to market your website.


Software

Your website has now been operating for some time now. You have exhausted your initial marketing strategies and are continuing to provide your readers with quality content. Many people in this stage find themselves lost and do not know where to go next to continue growing their business. The next step to the process is finding out what is effective and how you can refine your marketing strategy to make your site operate more efficiently. This can be done by analyzing data and how users interact with your website through the use of different analytic tools.

Free analytics software such as Google Analytics and Google Webmaster Tools should be set up in the beginning when building your site. While these tools are set up from the start, it will take some time for them to collect useful data from your website.

If your site has been operating with the analytics tools mentioned above, you will eventually see how users are interacting with your site along with all of the links to your website on other sites. Keywords that your website comes up for will be available for you to view. This will help when adding new content to your websites and allow you to know which keywords to target depending on your strategy. Once you are in this part of the process it is up to you how you use the data available. Different websites' goals will depend on the importance of different data. By looking at how your users are interacting with your site can provide you with valuable information to further enhance your success.


About The Author: Greg Grinillo is a blogger and entrepreneur from Seattle, WA, with great experience in online marketing.

Did you find this article helpful? Please let Greg and myself know by leaving us your valued comments.

Would you like to guest post on the blog? Please use the Contact tab above to get in touch if you write business-related articles or articles on the topics of Internet Marketing, Affiliate Marketing, Social Media Marketing/Optimisation (SMO), Blogging, Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) or Search Engine Marketing (SEM).

Related articles:
Learn The Key Formula That Makes An Affiliate Marketing Business Successful
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Top 5 Services To Monetise Your Blog Or Website
7 Best Affiliate Marketing Promotional Methods
Top 5 Traffic Sources
Top 10 Affiliate Marketing Tips


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1 comment:

  1. This is a pretty comprehensive guide to affiliate marketing, and everyone who wishes to start joining affiliate programs should pay attention. The basic of all successful affiliate marketing is good, stable networking. From there, you build an attractive promotional website and employ third-party analytic tools for support. With analytic tools, you can decide which keywords you must target to ensure the best page views. You'll figure out how customers interact with your website to decide on your next marketing strategy.

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