How to Setup An Affiliate Marketing Website And Make Money From It In 2018
If you’re looking for a one stop guide on how to setup an affiliate marketing website that makes a ton of money, you’re in the right place.
Affiliate marketing is the surefire way to make passive income from online. But the sad truth about is affiliate marketing is that most people treat it as a get rich quick scheme, that’s why they fail to make money miserably.
Let’s get into the details of how you can setup an affiliate marketing website with ease.
Table of Contents
- How to Easily Setup An Affiliate Marketing Website to Earn Huge Affiliate Commission
- 3 Most Successful Affiliate Websites to Get Inspiration
- 5 Important Factors That Will Determine Your Affiliate Website’s Success
- 5 Simple Steps to Set Up An Affiliate Marketing Website That Makes Money
- 4 types of content that works best to get more affiliate sales
- SEO Plays A Vital Role In Building A Successful Affiliate Website
- 5 Selling Tips That We Learned From 8 Years Of Affiliate Marketing
How to Easily Setup An Affiliate Marketing Website to Earn Huge Affiliate Commission
3 Most Successful Affiliate Websites to Get Inspiration
Before discussing on how to make an affiliate marketing website that makes more sales in 2018, let’s first talk about some of the most successful affiliate websites so you’ll get some quick inspiration and ideas on how you can actually set up a successful affiliate marketing website.
Here’s the list of 3 sample affiliate marketing websites that we’re going to talk about.
- The Wire Cutter
- Smart Passive Income
- Digital Photography School
So why did we consider writing about the above 3 sample affiliate marketing websites?
The simple reason is, all the 3 sample affiliate marketing sites that you’ll find below make a TON of affiliate commission (each one of them makes millions of dollars in affiliate commission every year). So let’s talk about these sample successful affiliate websites without much ado.
#1. The Wire Cutter: An Ultimate Source for Great Product Reviews
The Wire cutter is a great product review affiliate marketing site which is recently acquired by New York Times for over 30 million dollars (yes, you’ve heard it right).
How does it make money?
Mainly through product reviews. These product reviews range from electronics to travel to health and fitness. They create in-depth reviews for every product they want to promote by including their affiliate links. So whenever someone reads and clicks on their affiliate links to purchase something, they earn some commission.
They have a HUGE audience and receive millions of visitors a month for a variety of keywords each month, so their earning potential is also huge.
What topics do they cover?
- Gadgets reviews
- Outdoor gear reviews
- Health and fitness related products etc
#2. Smart Passive Income: An Insightful Blog That Teaches About Passive Income Sources
How does it make money?
Smart Passive Income currently has over 150,000 email subscribers apart from tens of thousands of followers on social media sites. Pat Flynn uses incredible email sales funnels to teach and sell his affiliate products. He also has his own products (eBooks, courses etc) to make money apart from affiliate marketing.
What topics do they cover?
- Affiliate marketing
- Email marketing
- Blogging etc
#3. Digital Photography School: A One Stop Platform for Photography Tips And Reviews
Digital Photography School is run by the problogger himself Darren Rowse. This is considered as one of the biggest online platforms for learning photography related stuff which is read by over 5 million visitors a month.
How does it make money?
Just like The Wire Cutter, DPS (Digital Photography School) as well writes product reviews but only related to photography which ranges from videos to cameras to DSLR.
They simply use affiliate links while referring to the product reviews they produce and make money when someone buys a photography related product through their affiliate links.
What topics do they cover?
- Videography etc
So there you go. They are some of the great affiliate marketing example websites on how to make an affiliate marketing website that actually makes money.
5 Important Factors That Will Determine Your Affiliate Website’s Success
Before you even think about setting up an affiliate marketing website, make sure to consider and implement the following 5 important factors that can make or break your affiliate marketing success. These are the 5 things I notice in almost all of the most successful affiliate websites in the blogosphere.
#1. Goal setting for affiliate success
If you want to set up an affiliate marketing website and start making money from it, you need to set goals which are specific, measurable and timely. Most affiliate marketers (especially the beginners) don’t set any goals and they easily lose track and quit before they even start generating affiliate sales from their site.
That’s why goal setting is so important for your affiliate success.
At the end of each single day and every single week, compare your accomplishments to your overall affiliate sales goal (whatever the number is). If you achieved the number you needed to hit your goal, pat your back.
If you didn’t hit your affiliate commission goal for the week or month, identify at least one thing that did go right and might help you achieve your goal next time.
That being said, your goals should be divided into various ways which are mentioned below.
- Daily goals: These daily goals can includes anything from your daily average sales count to email subscribers to increasing social shares or anything that’s important for you to build a profitable affiliate marketing website.
- Weekly goals: You need to ask yourself what you need to do every week to hit your monthly goal. Make sure to keep an eye on your weekly goals progress otherwise you’ll easily lose your sight on your long term goals.
- Monthly goals: These are very important as monthly goals have enough time for you to achieve whatever you want and at the same time, they give you a direction and clarity on how you’re achieving your goals.
- Quarterly goals: You can aim for going from 500 daily visitors to 1000 daily visitors a day to your site within 3 months. If you hit that mark, aim for even bigger quarterly goals. If not, find out what went wrong and ask yourself what can you do to achieve your quarterly goals.
- Yearly goals: This can be easy to set (for example, reaching to $5000 a month in affiliate commission within a year) but hard to achieve. That’s why you need to divide your yearly goals into quarterly, monthly and weekly goals (as mentioned above) to easily manage and achieve them.
#2. Picking the RIGHT niche to build your affiliate marketing website
Finding the profitable niche (or topic you want to blog about) for affiliate marketing website is one of the most time consuming and difficult tasks. Your affiliate marketing success starts with picking the RIGHT niche.
So how do you choose a niche that’s ensure your affiliate marketing success? Here are some of the tips and things you can use to finding a great niche.
Pick a core topic: Brainstorm various topic ideas that you’re interested in. Or find out various topics that have access to a ton of affiliate products you can use to promote through your sites.
You can use sites like Buzzsumo, SEMrush for brainstorming your blog topics. Instead of picking too broad niche, focus on specifically targeted niche (ex: instead of targeting to create a site on hosting providers for WordPress, you can just pick Bluehost or something else and talk only about it).
Use affiliate marketing platforms: Use affiliate marketing marketplaces like Commission Junction, Clickbank, Amazon etc for finding money generating products. These platforms provide you a ton of products that you can choose to promote as an affiliate no matter what industry you’re in.
The great thing about using such affiliate marketing platforms is that you can find high paying commission products where you can earn up to 75% commission for each successful sale and they are often free to sign up as an affiliate.
Here are some of the metrics that you need to consider while picking affiliate products to promote from sites like Clickbank.
- Initial $/sale: The average amount of money affiliates make per sale
- Average %/sale: The % of the sales price affiliates take as a commission on average
- Grav: Gravity is the number of affiliates that sold this product in the last 12 weeks
- Avg Rebill Total: This is the average commission affiliates take as a commission as a result of rebills
- Avg %/Rebill: This is the % of rebills paid to the affiliate, on average
So there you go, finding a great high paying affiliate product becomes easy when you consider the above metrics.
Do competitor analysis for niche: Before picking the right profitable niche for affiliate marketing, you must do a thorough analysis of your competitors. You can use tools like AdWords, SEMrush etc to easily analyse your competitors to check their best performing keywords, high traffic generating pages, backlink sources etc.
Once you have enough data about all the above mentioned things, you can easily decide whether your niche is profitable or not. If your niche doesn’t have much competition, probably you’re entering into a less competitive niche which you should avoid unless you know what you’re selling.
Once you’ve carefully analysed the above mentioned things, it becomes very easier for you to pick a profitable niche for affiliate marketing and then comes the most important step which is keyword research (it’s literally the lifeblood of any successful affiliate marketing website that makes a ton of money).
#3. It all begins with proper keyword research
Did you know the common trait it almost most successful affiliate websites? It’s their keyword research tactics.
There’s a HUGE difference between doing keyword research just for increasing traffic vs increasing affiliate sales.
If you’re thinking about setting up an affiliate marketing website to make more affiliate sales, you have to do a solid keyword research and you must know the difference between commercial keywords and informational keywords. Here’s an image that shows the importance between the two.
Let’s now break this topic into two section so you can understand the relation between them easily and do keyword research even better.
- Commercial keywords
- Informational keywords
Let’s now discuss about these two types of keywords so you can easily get more search traffic that’s highly targeted to boost your affiliate sales.
What are commercial keywords?
These are the keywords that people use on Google search right before they think about buying something online (it can be anything from a book to magazine to any SEO related plugin).
They generally include keywords like;
- Discounts on marketing books
- SEMrush 30 days trial
- Bluehost discount code etc
If you observe the above keywords carefully, you’ll notice that people are already well aware of the products that they want to buy and they are just looking for some discounts, free trials etc before they buy.
These are the keywords that you need to target to boost your affiliate sales. Here’s where you can use top 10 list posts, comparison posts, product reviews etc to increase your overall sales by using the commercial intent keywords that are relevant to the products you promote.
What are informational keywords?
These are the keywords that educate your audience (in other words, you’ll be using these keywords to create awareness about the products you promote). As an affiliate marketer, you should first learn how to pre-sell your stuff and that can only be done if you’re educating your audience about the products and services you promote.
These keywords usually contain;
- Iphone 8 review
- Using SEMrush for keyword research
- Free marketing eBooks etc
If you notice the above keywords, you’ll easily figure out that the audience who are using the above keywords on Google search are NOT in buying mode. They are actually finding information about getting awareness. Once they get awareness you can easily sell them stuff.
Here’s where you can use content types like “how to use [any product] for [solution]”, free ways to [do something], free alternatives etc to attract more visitors to your site.
Which type of keywords should you pick to increase your affiliate sales?
Now you know the difference between both commercial intent keywords and informative keywords but which type of keywords should you actually use to bring more sales?
That’s a great question and the answer is: you should target both of those keyword types.
Why? The reason is simple. You need more traffic (and you can only get it by focusing on informative keywords) and you also need more affiliate sales (which is only possible if you’re targeting commercial intent keywords). So keeping a nice blend of both type of keywords while creating content will ensure you more search traffic along with more affiliate sales.
#4. List building is the KEY to increase your affiliate sales
I always see a common pattern in 90% of the affiliate marketers: they usually don’t focus on building an email list.
Yes, they do include 1 or 2 email opt-in forms on their site to capture email subscribers but they don’t give #1 priority to building and growing “qualified email lists” which is why most of them struggle to make any sales.
Don’t make that mistake as there are so many benefits of having an email list which include;
- You own the list (you can pretty much do whatever you want with it)
- You can drive targeted traffic to your site or affiliate products whenever you want
- You can generate more affiliate sales and the list goes on
So how can you build a thriving email list that increases your affiliate sales and commission?
- Create an irresistible lead magnet: People who visit your site don’t give their email address to you just because you’re asking for it. You need to bribe them and it can be anything from an eBook, checklist, plugin, theme or anything that makes your audience to say wow and join your email list immediately after seeing it.
- Email sequence is the key: If you’re building an email list, don’t just create and send an email whenever you write a new blog post. Instead create an informative email sequence that goes at regular intervals (weekly or daily) whenever someone joins your email list. Your affiliate sales depend on your how you good and informative your email sequence is. So spend quality time and money on creating one to generate more affiliate sales.
- Subscribe to your competitors email list: This will give you a ton of ideas on how they are using their email lists to promote their products, create awareness and make profits from their subscribers. You can tweak those ideas to create a hungry email list for you as well in the long run.
#5. Analysing the competition
Before entering into any niche or writing any topic on your affiliate site, make sure to use Google search to find out your competitors.
Just enter your desired keywords on Google that you want to rank for and see the top 10 results to find out your competition. That way you’ll be able to understand why they are ranking on 1st page of Google. It’s a must if you want to get more search traffic to your sites.
Here are some of the factors that you need to consider while doing competitor analysis in any niche to lay the strong foundation for your affiliate marketing website’s success.
- Number of backlinks
- Quality of the content
- Other important metrics such as DA, PA etc
Let’s talk about the above factors in detail now so you’ll better understand about how to do competitor research while building an amazon affiliate website or any other affiliate marketing website to make profits.
Backlink profile: Backlink profile helps you find all the backlinks (including relevant, toxic, irrelevant link sources) of your competitors. Once you know how to analyse the backlink profile of any site, it becomes easier for you to find the complexity of ranking for any targeted keyword. You can do backlink analysis by using tools like SEMrush and you can also find all the backlink sources so you can do guest posting, email outreach etc to build those links for your site as well.
Quality of the content: Enter few of your targeted keywords and analyse all the top 10 search results to see the quality and relevancy of the content. If a site is ranking on top 5 search results with thin quality content, then you can easily outrank it by producing high quality and in-depth content. Always focus on creating 2000+ word articles for highly competitive keywords as they are tend to rank higher on Google search.
DA, PA metrics: Stop wondering about why few top sites get better rankings for few keywords even if the content quality is average. That’s because they have a great DA (Domain Authority). So make sure to improve your DA and PA metrics to improve your chances of ranking higher on Google search results for your desired keywords.
Quick tip: Use Mozbar (free extension for chrome, firefox) tool on your browser which helps you easily find the important metrics of any website by showing DA, PA, link metrics etc.
So how can you analyse your competition for better affiliate marketing website success? Here are some of the tips that you can implement for affiliate marketing success.
- Get access to SEMrush. It is one of the top SEO tools for doing competitor analysis. You can find out every information about your competitors ranging from top performing pages to their backlink sources to their top keywords. This information will be so much useful for you to get top rankings for your affiliate website too.
- Do Google search, tap the social networks and do everything that gives you ideas about your competitors. You can even attend your competitors events, webinars and conferences to enhance your knowledge and come up with fresh ideas to grow your affiliate website.
- Find out their top performing pages that are generating them more traffic, backlinks and more importantly sales. You can do this by using tools such as SEMrush and manually analysing their site to see which products they heavily promote so you can decide whether or not to promote them on your site.
5 Simple Steps to Set Up An Affiliate Marketing Website That Makes Money
Let’s now talk about how you can set up an affiliate marketing website that makes a ton of sales in the long run. Let’s discuss the setting up process just using 5 simple steps which are mentioned below.
Step 1: Picking the right hosting and installing WordPress
Hands down, WordPress is the #1 blogging platform for creating an affiliate marketing website. It gives you full control, security and access to a ton of plugins to run your affiliate marketing site effortlessly.
If you’re using WordPress, you’ll basically need two major things.
- Domain name and
- Hosting space
We recommend Bluehost as the hosting choice for all the people who are just starting out as it gives incredible features like free domain, unlimited domain storage and bandwidth at affordable prices.
Once you’ve purchased hosting for your business, it’s time for you to install WordPress. Once you’re done with the domain and hosting purchase and installation of WordPress on your hosting environment, you need a WordPress theme to get the ball rolling.
Step 2: Best affiliate marketing theme recommendations
If you’re an setting up an affiliate marketing website, make sure to focus on using a unique, powerful and high converting design for your site. If you’re on a limited budget, just go for affiliate marketing theme recommendations which are listed below.
Thrive Themes: Thrive themes are known as WordPress conversion focused themes. They are used by thousands of affiliate marketers worldwide to boost their conversion rates to promote their affiliate products easily. You can do anything that you want from creating email optin forms to landing pages using their optimized WordPress premium themes.
Smart Passive Income: This is a Genesis framework child theme. That means you need to buy Genesis framework (which costs around $70 per year) in order to use this theme.
If you’re a marketer, you might already have heard about the successful affiliate marketer Pat Flynn who earns around 100,000 dollars every month at an average in affiliate commission from his site. This theme is inspired and designed by his site’s design. So if you like Pat’s blog’s design, this is for you.
Elegant Themes: I highly recommend Elegant themes for any affiliate marketer to design their WordPress site. The reason is you get you access to over 80 themes at just the cost of $69. You can do any kind of customization you want and pick any of their WordPress theme to run your affiliate marketing site.
All of their themes are properly optimized for both search engines and mobile so you don’t have to worry about slow loading times or making your site mobile responsive to get better search engine rankings and traffic.
Step 3: Best affiliate marketing plugin recommendations
Once you’ve installed WordPress on your hosting and activated an affiliate friendly WordPress theme on your site, it’s time for us to start using the RIGHT affiliate marketing tools and plugins.
If you want to maximise your affiliate commission and sales, you need to have access to the BEST affiliate marketing tools and plugins and here’s a list of some of them (which we love).
Thirsty Affiliates: This is one of the widely used affiliate marketing plugin to cloak your affiliate links. It helps you to easily optimize your affiliate links and track all the clicks that you get for each link you create. You can even add images and banners to your affiliate links and recall them for easy insertion when writing your content on your affiliate website.
TablePress: This is a free plugin that’s so much helpful for every affiliate marketer to create tables for products they promote through their sites. You can easily add, manage, delete various rows and columns using this free WordPress plugin. The best part about using this plugin is that you can easily embed the tables into posts, pages, or text widgets with a simple Shortcode.
Author hReview: This is the same plugin we use at Bloggers Passion for writing reviews (it’s a must for us for every product, comparison review post we write on this site). This plugin helps you get rich snippets along with start ratings for your products. That way you can easily get more click through rates which definitely increases your overall search rankings.
Drip: This is the email marketing software we are currently using at Bloggers Passion (we migrated from GetResponse). The biggest benefit using this tool is that it makes it easier for you to build and manage your email list and also gives you a ton of incredible features to automate your email marketing sequences.
Step 4: Picking the RIGHT affiliate products to promote
As discussed earlier, your affiliate marketing website’s success hugely depends on your niche and more importantly the products you promote. So how do you pick the right affiliate products to promote on your affiliate marketing website?
As I said above, you can use market platform like ShareASale, Clickbank, Commission Junction etc to easily find high paying affiliate programs that are relevant to your target audience. You can also analyse your competitors websites to see what type of products and services they are promoting through their sites to make money as an affiliate.
Here’s a great video by Pat Flynn on how to sell products without sounding like a salesman.
You can also pick an affiliate program that you think is suitable for your audience by visiting their site and joining as an affiliate. This is a common practice among all affiliate marketers.
For example, if you like Grammarly grammar checker tool and if you’re running an educational related website, you can visit Grammarly site, read their affiliate marketing guidelines and sign up for free as an affiliate to start earning commission by recommending their products through your site.
That being said, here are a couple of things you need to check before joining any affiliate marketing network.
- Affiliate control panel (most successful products and services offer dedicated control panel for their affiliate promoters)
- Minimum payout
- Payment method (PayPal, check or wire transfer) and how much time do they take to send your commission
- Whether tax form required or not for processing your affiliate commission
- Dedicated affiliate marketing support (if a product is successful, they usually provide a dedicated support team to assist their affiliate marketers to make more sales).
Step 5: Networking with affiliate product managers
Let me tell you a secret: if you want to succeed in affiliate marketing, you need to find ways to grab the products, tools and services for FREE (so you can try them for free and write reviews to increase your affiliate commission by promoting those products through your site).
But how do you get free access to their tools and products?
The tip is: start networking with affiliate product managers who promote those tools.
For example, if I want to get Ahrefs SEO tool for free (they usually offer a 14 day free trial), I first contact their affiliate marketing or promotion team via email to find out if I can grab their tool for free (or extended free trial of 30 days or 90 days). That’ll be enough for us to give a try to their tool, find out all the pros and cons and then create a long form of content about it on our site. It’s as simple as that.
You should also do the same if you want to get free access to any of the products that you might want to recommend as an affiliate. Just get in touch with their customer support or affiliate managing team and ask for the FREE version. Most of the times, they’ll gladly let you try their products for free. That’s how you can make the more out of affiliate marketing.
4 types of content that works best to get more affiliate sales
There’s a difference between normal blog content vs sales content? Do you know the difference? If yes, how are you using it to get more affiliate sales? If not, here are some of the best content types to drive more affiliate sales to your affiliate marketing website in 2018 and beyond.
#1. In-depth and unbiased product reviews
One of the most powerful content types that generates a ton of sales to your site is product reviews. Almost every affiliate website including Smart Passive Income, Digital Photography School, The Wire Cutter or any other site uses product reviews to drive more sales.
Why do product reviews work great?
Here are some of the reasons you should write product reviews.
- They create awareness about the products you promote
- You can bring targeted traffic by aiming for several keywords (which again helps you bring more sales)
- They help you drive more sales because people search for product based information on Google search before they make a purchase
- And the list goes on
Here’s a video on how we made a ton of sales during black Friday season in 2016.
Here’s an excellent review of SEMrush that you can find both interesting and how one product review can be written to educate audience and drive more affiliate sales. If you carefully read the review of it, you’ll understand that it’s more inclined towards helping people on how they can use SEMrush instead of selling the product hard. That’s why it works like a charm.
Most product reviews really suck. How can you create unbiased product reviews to generate more affiliate sales from your website?
Here are some easy yet most powerful tips that helped us to get more affiliate sales from every product review that we publish here at Bloggers Passion.
- The first step to writing great product reviews is that pick a great product that’s worth using it. Make sure to use the product by yourself for some time, go through all the features and start writing about it only if you’re satisfied with it (this is the basic thing most affiliate marketers lack and that’s why they struggle to make more sales).
- The second step is to do a thorough research about the product that you want to write a review about. Google about it and find out all the competitors that are already ranking on first page results for the product you want to promote. This gives a great idea about what to write and how to make your product reviews stand out from the crowd.
- The final step is to actually write the product review as if you’re providing solutions to your target audience problems, wants and needs. This is the key. Don’t make your product reviews like a sales copy. Instead focus on how you can demonstrate your product features, benefits along with the pros and cons. That’s how you can create product reviews that sell.
- Also make sure to optimize your product reviews for relevant keywords. Use SEO by Yoast to easily optimize your content for various keywords.
#2. Comparison posts
People who are thinking to buy a specific product will always look for comparison of similar products on Google search (before buying the item). This is why comparison of similar products work like a charm in getting more affiliate sales.
Here are few quick tips you can use to write great product comparison review posts that help you drive more affiliate sales.
- Do the research of similar products. Before you think about writing comparison posts, find all the relevant and useful products that are relevant to your primary product that you want to write about. That way, you can make a list of the best products to compare which also makes it easy for you to create better comparison posts.
- Improve your CTR (click through rates) of your comparison posts, only then you can get as much traffic as you can. The best way to increase your CTR is to write magnetic headlines that people want to click. You can use free tools like Portent headline generator which allows you to come up with a ton of click worthy headline ideas.
- Instead of writing feature comparison type of posts, write “benefit driven” comparison posts. The more benefits you share with each product, the easier it gets for your audience to easily pick the best suited product for them (which in turn helps you increase your sales).
- We always use tables while creating comparison posts (along with affiliate links, features, small details about each product etc). This helps your audience to easily skim through your products for comparison.
#3. Expert roundup posts that include the affiliate products you promote
Let’s say you’ve an affiliate website that promotes hosting related services such as Bluehost, WPX hosting, WP Engine etc.
Now, you can make a list of all the experts in marketing industry and reach out to them via email to conduct an expert round post around “which hosting do you use to run your WordPress site”. This will give you a ton of hosting choices to promote on your site using your affiliate links.
Expert roundup posts usually go viral on social media and also work well on search engine results. So you will not only get more affiliate sales but you’ll also get great amount of traffic from search engine and social media sites.
If the expert roundup posts are working well for you, you can keep on doing them once a month (or weekly once) according to your posting schedule. Also make sure to update them whenever you get new ideas or new responses to the post.
#4. How to posts (about the products) you promote
How to posts are always click-worthy and add a ton of value to your audience while searching for any product information they need.
Let’s say that you’re promoting an yoga mat related products, you can come up with following how to post ideas (instead of directly selling and recommending them yoga mats).
- How to use yoga mats
- How useful are yoga mats when doing yoga
- How yoga mats can change your lives etc
See the above how to post ideas that are relevant to the products you promote? They are nurturing your audience in advance so that you can sell or recommend your affiliate products later. This tactic is much better in increasing your affiliate sales and gives you better results when compared to directly selling to your audience.
You can use tools like SEMrush, Ahrefs, Buzzsumo etc to come up with a ton of profitable how to post ideas that are relevant to the products you promote on your affiliate website. Just make sure to spend enough time on content marketing (from research to writing) to get the best benefits.
SEO Plays A Vital Role In Building A Successful Affiliate Website
If you’re setting up an affiliate marketing website to make more money, you need to learn and master the art of SEO. The more you get traffic from search engines, the higher affiliate commission you can make. That being said, here are few vital SEO tips for every successful affiliate website to bring more search traffic.
When you’re running an affiliate marketing website, you need a ton of traffic from search engines. Do you know why?
Search engine traffic is the most qualified traffic and the best part is, it’s FREE. You just need to find the right content marketing strategy and a solid link building strategy to drive thousands of visitors from search engines to your sites to grow your affiliate sales.
But how to develop a solid link building strategy that ensures to a ton of backlinks?
First things first. Focus on using white hat link building tactics and NEVER go after black hat SEO strategies as they lead to penalising your site in search results. White hat link building strategies include blog commenting, social bookmarking, guest posting, video marketing, infographic link building etc. These tactics are safe to follow and help you increase your traffic.
That being said, here are few ways you can build high quality links.
Use blogger outreach strategy: Blogger outreach strategy is getting a lot of recognition these days among all kinds of marketers to grow their backlink profile. It simply means reaching out to other bloggers and attracting links from their site to your content.
If you want to make the most out it, build strong rapport with other bloggers and influencers in your industry and start linking out to their content before seeking links from them. That way it will become easier for you to naturally build links by also building strong relationships with other bloggers which will come handy in the long run.
Create infographics: Infographics are great way to generate high quality links from other sites. Just make sure to pick the RIGHT topic that will go viral in your industry and use tools like Canva to create stunning infographics and create an embedded code so that you can generate links whenever someone uses them on their site.
If you want to make your infographics to go viral, share it with your email list, social media platforms and do blogger outreach so they get a ton of exposure online. You can also use blogging forums such as Blog Engage, Just Retweet, Indiblogger etc to share your content.
Guest post on relevant and authority sites: We still write high quality guest posts (that range from 2000 to 4000 words per guest post) for other sites like Blogging Tips, Basic Blog Tips, Problogger, SEMrush etc. Writing guest posts for top sites that are relevant to your industry is the key to generating more links, traffic, subscribers and leads.
Do you know why we do it although we’re attracting great amount of traffic and sales from search engines? The reason is we value backlinks from guest posts. They are easy to get but stay for a longer time giving a great boost for various keywords. So if you want to get high quality links, make sure to find relevant blogs in your niche and start writing guest posts for them.
Website speed = Affiliate success
Whether you know it or not, your website speed determines your affiliate marketing website’s success. If your website speed is too slow, it will affect your search rankings and sales. Here are some factors that determine your website speed so make sure to take them seriously.
Hosting plays a crucial role: Your web hosting plays a significant role in your page loading times. If you’re using a cheap or free hosting service (mostly shared hosting servers), it directly affects your website speed. That’s why moving to dedicated hosting services like WPX hosting can triple your website loading time and performance.
Limit your plugins usage: WordPress has thousands of plugins in its directory but that doesn’t mean you should be using a ton of plugins. Do you know that the more plugins you use the more burden they will create on your hosting servers and databases which in turn reduces your website loading times? So make sure to limit your plugins usage and I’d recommend you not to use more than 15 to 20 plugins at any given time.
Install a cache plugin: If you install a cache plugin like W3 total cache or Total super cache, it improves the SEO and user experience of your site by increasing website performance and thus by reducing download times which significantly increases your loading times.
Use a CDN: CDN (Content Delivery Networks) can dramatically boost your website loading times and speed because they use various server locations to cater your visitors around the world. You can also use MaxCDN or CloudFlare CDN to boost your website speed.
Optimize everything: Optimize your images, databases, post revisions etc if you want to lessen the burden from your hosting environment. Make sure to always shrink your images and heavy files before you even upload them to your WordPress dashboard. That way you can save a lot of storage and also keep your site super fast. Also keep a limit on your post revisions so you can boost your website performance.
Mobile friendly websites are the key: Whether you know it or not, Google has a mobile-friendly update which rewards the sites that are mobile responsive and penalises those sites that are not optimized for mobile users. So if you don’t have a mobile responsive site yet, make sure to use a simple and free plugin like WP Touch to instantly make it responsive.
Social is SEO
Did you know that your social media shares directly impact your SEO rankings? Yes, if you increase your social shares to your affiliate marketing website, you’ll also increase your search engine rankings. It’s as simple as that.
Just have a look at the following image to know more about how social media impacts your overall SEO and search rankings.
So how to increase your social media shares?
Here are some tips that you can use to increase your social media shares to your affiliate marketing website.
- Ask your audience to share your posts, product reviews, case studies etc. Most people don’t ask to share their readers on social media. If you don’t ask for social shares, how can you even persuade them later to buy your affiliate products? So simply ask them to share your stuff while creating content. We always do it at the end of each post we publish on this site.
- Use tweetable quotes. You can use tools to easily add tweetable quotes or paragraphs within your content to let your audience easily tweet your content or quotes on Twitter.
- Use social sharing buttons at most prominent places on your blog. We use social sharing buttons on the left side bar and it is sticky (that means, even if you scroll through the content down below, those buttons will stay so people can share it whenever they want while reading the content).
- Last but not least, make your content super informative. No one shares your stuff on social media if you’re creating generic content. So create your content highly actionable and super useful for your audience.
5 Selling Tips That We Learned From 8 Years Of Affiliate Marketing
Over the years I’ve learned so many tips and techniques to successfully sell affiliate products through my site and here are some of the biggest lessons that can help you get ahead in affiliate marketing.
#1. Don’t be afraid of selling
One of the frustrating things for any beginner affiliate marketer or blogger is the fear of rejection: that’s why they afraid of the idea to sell stuff to their audience.
See, everyone has bills to pay. So if you want to make money online, you should embrace fear and start selling without feeling like a douchebag. Just make sure NOT to feel guilty while recommending your affiliate products, services or anything that you want to sell through your website. Only then, you’ll be able to produce more sales which eventually help you build a profitable affiliate marketing website in the long run.
If you’re still afraid of selling, make sure to remember the following things.
- Selling becomes easier once you start selling more. It’s as simple as that. The more you do the selling, the more easier it gets for you and you’ll just ignore getting rejected or feeling frustrated while selling stuff from your site.
- Selling can be a lot of fun if done right. Just make sure to read as many marketing, business and selling books as possible to learn the art of selling and you’ll find a lot of fun selling stuff to others. You’ll not only be helping others but you’ll also making profits in the process.
- Listen to podcasts from successful marketers like Pat Flynn, Brian Clark, Darren Rowse etc as they share a ton of useful information about how to sell to your audience using your products and services from your sites.
#2. Be genuine and extremely honest
One of the notable things I observe in any successful marketer is their honesty. Nothing beats honesty, hard work and being genuine. Online space is fully filled up with spammers, hackers and deal breakers.
So if you’re being genuinely interested in solving other problems with your content, products or services, you’ll be always ahead of your competition no matter how much crowded it is.
Avoid overselling. Don’t promote too much and always promote only those products that you’re currently using and fully satisfied with. That’s how you can write genuine reviews about them by also recommending them to your audience.
Avoid showing false social proof. I see a lot of bloggers (call them spammers) doing this: they create fake income reports and brag about them on their blog and social media. If you’re thinking about doing anything like that, avoid it at all costs.
Sooner or later your audience will find out the truth. So if you want to be in the affiliate marketing and win the game in the long run, be honest and stop being fake.
#3. Build credibility as an expert
If you’re a beginner to affiliate marketing, I want to let you know one thing: people don’t buy from strangers. It’s especially true when it comes to affiliate marketing. If you want to make more sales as an affiliate, you should build credibility as an expert.
You should become a go to guy in your industry to find answers. Only then you can become a successful affiliate marketer. Just notice any profitable marketer such as Pat Flynn, Zac Johnson and you’ll notice that they make more sales and earn millions of dollars in affiliate commission every year because of their credibility and brading that they’ve built over the years. That’s what you should be focusing on if you’re just starting out.
That being said, here are some ways that you can use to build credibility as an affiliate marketer to generate more sales.
- Do interviews, podcasts and webinars with experts in your industry. That’s the quickest way to earn credibility as a marketer in any industry. Networking is the key to success.
- Teach everything you know about your success, failures, case studies, journey etc. That’s how you can truly create engaging content that connects with your audience which again helps you build credibility in their eyes as an expert.
- Write books. It can be printable version books or simply kindle books. If you’re creating truly unique information through your books, you’ll instantly noticed as a marketing expert in your industry.
- Use social proof to your advantage. We write case studies of our site’s traffic growth and earning reports every now and then for a reason and the reason is to earn credibility in front of you (and we often share those reports along with the screenshots).
#4. Create a sense of urgency
Just have a look at the following image and you’ll know the importance of scarcity.
What did you observe from the above image?
People who’re browsing through your products are more inclined to buy stuff from you if they see a message that reads “only a few left!”. That’s what scarcity is. That’s what most online marketing giants like Amazon, Walmart etc use to attract more clients.
The common economics is if there’s more demand, the supply will be less. If there’s more supply, the demand will be less. Scarcity is a powerful social trigger you should learn if you want to succeed in affiliate marketing.
So how do you create a sense of urgency and scarcity to increase your affiliate sales from your site? Here are some of the proven ways to do it.
Use time limits: You can use time limits (there are so many plugins available for WordPress users) on your product pages where your readers have to act fast to get the deals and discounts. It always works like a charm especially when you’re using landing pages with HUGE discounts on popular products in your industry.
Make use of special days: Don’t miss the promotion of your affiliate products during special events and holiday seasons. During black Friday week (which comes only once in a year), most of the marketing companies offer huge discounts to attract a wide range of customers.
We made over $13,000 in affiliate commission during black Friday week in 2017. That’s the power of urgency. So never miss them if you want to get more sales.
Use strong call to actions: Using strong call to actions like “hurry up”, “only 1 spot left”, “offer ends today” etc can skyrocket your affiliate sales as people are interested in getting more of limited time period offers. You can analyse your top performing competitors website copy and emails to see how they are using call to actions to turn their visitors into buyers.
#5. Use ABC (Always Be Connecting)
The most powerful trait of successful marketers is this: they always connect with others.
Find ways to connect with influencers, other marketers and your audience if you want to get ahead in affiliate marketing. Attend seminars, conduct webinars and do interviews with others to grow your networking skills.
Also take time to respond to your readers emails, comments, social media shares etc if you want to get known as a successful affiliate marketer. Just stop treating affiliate marketing as a get rich quick scheme and treat it as a way to making money by educating your target audience about the products you promote.
Final Thoughts On Setting Up Most Successful Affiliate Websites In 2018
Although there are thousands of affiliate marketers who are making a living from affiliate marketing but it is still NOT an easy income source. You’ve to work hard, be consistent and make bold moves in order to succeed in affiliate marketing game.
That’s why we decided to write this detailed guide (with over 8000 words) to help you out on setting up the most successful affiliate websites. We hope that this detailed guide on how to set up an affiliate marketing website helps you successfully make more sales as an affiliate marker in 2018 and beyond.
If you still have any questions related to sample affiliate marketing websites and launching a new affiliate marketing website, just shoot your questions in the comments below.