If you want to learn how to make money blogging through affiliate marketing then you are in the right place. Blogging and Affiliate Marketing have been around for quite some time now and will be around for quite some time to come.
One of the best ways to make money blogging is through affiliate marketing. This method of earning money is one of the more practical and attainable ways of earning an income online. Though it can be one of the most challenging ways, it is also the most rewarding when you see your efforts paying off.
How to Make Money With Affiliate Marketing For Beginners
I talk about this quite extensively in my article on starting affiliate marketing as a beginner. You can check out the link below:
What I will say right now though is that there are numerous ways you can do this and the article I have linked above will give you a really detailed walkthrough of the process.
However, if you want a simple method that you can start right away and begin seeing results within a short space of time, I will go one better and give you a couple.
Before I get into this method though, I believe that it’s important to point out a few things. I’ve been around the block for quite some time now and have observed a few pitfalls that can derail your efforts.
There are literally hundreds of ways of earning money online and any one of them can make you successful. This is one of the biggest pitfalls that you will come across in the online space.
There is just so much to chose from and it is very easy to get distracted.
You can easily fall into what is known as shiny object syndrome where you hop around from one method to the next without really making real progress. My simple piece of advice is to keep locked in on one method then follow it through to a logical conclusion.
In other words, follow the process through to the end. Half baked efforts simply won’t work for you in the long term. You will find yourself with a trail of attempted make money online efforts in your wake.
Take it from me. I wish I had chosen one lane and run in it much, much earlier. I would have saved myself all the years of pain and frustration.
On the other hand, those experiences taught me lessons that I am sharing with you here so that you don’t have to go through the same.
Stand on my shoulders and cut off years from your success curve.
The Process of Making Making Money With Affiliate Marketing as a Beginner
Now that my rant on the virtues of focus is over, let’s get into the practical steps of affiliate marketing for beginners.
Step One – Chose Your Niche
When it comes to niche selection, it is often best to choose a niche which you have considerable knowledge in or are passionate about.
A passion niche will help you stick it out through the inevitable difficult times where you are grinding it out but not seeing any results. I call this phase the ghost town phase because it feels like you are communicating to a ghost town.
It is very easy to lose focus at this stage and give up but, when you are really passionate about your niche, work is fun and you will stick through it when the going gets tough.
I completely love Internet Marketing and Personal Development so this blog is something that I love doing and I keep at it as I steadily edge towards my goals.
A field that you have training in or considerable knowledge about, is the next best thing when it comes to niche selection. It will significantly cut the time that you take to research a topic especially if you are choosing blogging as your marketing platform.
Lastly, if you are willing to do the research, you can also build an affiliate income source in areas that you may not necessarily be very knowledgable in.
My recommendation would be to start off with a passion niche, build that up, then go into the other categories. Once you have succeeded in one niche, it will become much, much easier to replicate the same process in other niches.
Let me point out that if you are passionate about something, it doesn’t necessarily mean that you are going to make money from it. You need to ensure that your passion is in a buyers’ market.
The next step that I’m going to share will help you make sure that you get into the right field from the get-go.
To do this, we will go to one of the biggest online affiliate marketplaces out there, ClickBank.
Step 2 – Pick Your Product
I am now going to walk you through the process of picking a winning product for your chosen niche. This process will help ensure that you are in a market where people actually buy.
The first thing we will do is go to www.clickbank.com and sign up for an account if you don’t already have one or to login if you already do.
Once logged in, go to the Marketplace as in the image below:
Once in the Marketplace, select a product category that relates to your niche.
Next up, you will need to type in a product keyword and filter by gravity. This is a key step in this process. The gravity filter shows the number of other affiliates on ClickBank who are making money from that particular product.
A gravity of 30 and above is a good indicator of a product that is selling well.
Once you’ve found a product that satisfies all of the above, generate a hop link and save these in notepad. Repeat this process and find 2 to 3 other products using this same method.
The images below walk you through this process.
Once you’ve got at least 2 other products, the next thing you need to do is to cloak your links. Link cloaking serves 2 purposes. The first is to make your links more appealing and the second is to protect your links from affiliate commission theft.
This is the link we generated in the example above.
It’s very unattractive and long. This is the same affiliate link cloaked:
It looks a lot better, doesn’t it?
These days, there are many ways of cloaking a link. When I first started out with link cloaking, I had to write some code in notepad, put it in a folder then upload that folder to my server.
Thank goodness that the process is a way easier today. If you have a WordPress website, there are many plugins you can use and if you don’t have a website, use a URL shortener like www.bit.ly.
Step 3- Drive Traffic
There are different ways to drive traffic to your affiliate sites be it a straight to the landing page, niche website or blog. You can’t make money without traffic and in this step, I will share how you can steadily build traffic.
I will start out by sharing free ways of driving traffic to your affiliate offers.
Facebook seems to be losing more and more ground as a free traffic source. Organic traffic within Facebook itself has virtually tanked let alone links to external websites. This has been the story for most of the pages that I manage.
It has become a “pay to play” scenario. They will tell you that they did it to give us a better experience but my guess is it’s more for the sharholders than anything else.
If you pay, however, Facebook is still a really good traffic source. In this section though, I am only loking at free traffic sources.
One part of Facebook which still holds great potential as a free traffic source are Facebook groups. Just like any other free traffic source, you will have to put in tme instead of money but if you put in the work, you stand a great chance to reap good results down the stretch.
Pinterest Group Boards
Pinterest is the rave right now especially if you want to drive free traffic to your website or straight to an affiliate offer.
It took me a bit of time to get onboard but the more I researched it, the more I became convinced that this was a genuine traffic source that could move you towards your goals much quicker.
With Pinterest group boards, you can access big communities of people in targeted niches. The beauty of this method is that you don’t need to have a large number of followers in order to make this work.
All you need to do is be accepted on group boards as a contributor where you can then post your pins and access all the group board members.
Another great source of traffic is YouTube. A lot of people are either reluctant to get in front of the camera or just feel that creating video content consistantly is just too much work.
This ends up meaning that the level of competition is lower because of this mindset in people and you can capitalise on this.
One thing that YouTube likes in consistency. If you are able to post regularly, you will be able to get significant traffic which will gradually grow as YouTube’s algorithm figures out that you are offering valuable content on a regular basis.
SEO or Search Engine Optimisation is where you create content hat is optimised for search engines in an attempt to get on page 1 of search results.
This is more of a long term approach especially if you have a new website. Back in the day when I was starting out, you could get a new site ranking within a few days and, sometimes, hours.
Google’s algorithm, in particular, has really changed over time and it takes anywhere from 6-8 months for your content to start receiving significant traffic. Google does frequent algorithm updates to make sure that searchers get the most relevant results.
If you want to take the SEO route, you need to take a long term approach. If, however, you want to get results quicker, I recommend that you use a combination of Facebook groups and Pinterest group boards to start getting traffic while you wait for your content to rank in the search engines.
You will get traffic in the interim and once your content starts to rank in the search engines, you will receive a spike in your traffic down the line.
Now let’s take a look at thepaid traffic methods which are available to you. Paid traffic will get you results much quicker but they can be a tricky mine field that needs to be carefully navigated.
Oftentimes competition is tough and you usually lose money learning the ropes before making any and a lot of times, people give up before they figure it out.
I alluded to it earlier in the article. Facebook is now strongly focused on getting their revenue up for their shareholders (my opinion) so organic traffic has gradually been going down over the years.
You don’t get the same benefits now that you used to get seven or eight years ago from building large followings. There are still some virtues to it but the numbers have really fallen.
Facebook paid advertising, though, offers a great opportunity to get massive traffic to your websites. It works particularly well with ecommerce.
As mentioned before, paid traffic is very competitive and you need to take the time to study how it works so you don’t lose money.
I’ll admit that I have way more experience with Faceook ads than Google Adwords but it is one of the most effective methods of promotion out there if, once again, you learn the ropes.
It’s easy to lose a lot of money if you go at it on your own. suggest that you take the time to really study and understand it and you will be able to generate a lot of money really quickly.
I remember back around 2006, I heard of a book called Google Cash by Chris Carpenter where he taught people how to make a killing with Google Ads and affiliate offers. Back then, people made tonnes of money doing this until Google shut that down.
You can’t drive traffic straight to affiliate offers anymore which is what the next paid traffic source I will share has an advantage over google.
Bing Ads is a search engine just like Google but with a lot fewer restrictions. They are trying to stake their own claim in the search engine advertising space hence are more flexible than Google.
You can drive traffic to affiliate offers but this may not give you the best conversions. I will show you a more efective away in my next point. Bing Ads is also a lot more affordable in comparison to Google Adwords.
Even though they have a smaller user base than Google, it is still big enough to give a pretty good income through affiliate marketing.
How to Make Money Affiliate Marketing With a Website
I now want to talk about the different ways you can earn affiliate commissions with a website. Even though there are literally hundreds of ways to do it, I will talk about 3 different models here.
Affiliate Marketing With a Blog
Blogging works best when you, first of all, find out specifically what the market is looking for. In my very first blog, I made the mistake of not taking the time to do my keyword research.
The blog ended up with about 89 articles but a few of those were getting significant traffic from search engines. This was because I mostly wrote on what I wanted to write about but never really took the time to research what people wanted to read about.
When you start a blog, you have to do your keyword research right. I wrote on this and you can check out this article to get a more in-depth understanding of this:
I walk you through the process of doing your research right without the need for keyword research tools.
You want to aim for low competition, low search volume keywords that you can rank for quickly and you will discover that the numbers add up the more content you create.3
A niche site is a website with around 30 to 45 aricles on it that is in a specially targeted niche. You create these sites using the same keyword research method in the article I linked above and basically wait for them to rank.
They are generally long term passive income projects but have the potential to pay you for many, many years to come.
If you do your research well and create great content, you will get really good results. Add your affiliate links and BOOM! You’re good to go.
2 Page Website
This method works well with Pinterest traffic, Facebook Groups as well as Bing Ads. In this method, you need a lead magnet, 2 pages on a website and email autoresponder software.
A lead magnet is something that you give away in exchange for a name and email address. It can be a free email course, e-book, webinar or whatever.
It just needs to be a compeling reason for someone to give you their email address.
The first page on your site will be a lead capture page that advertises your lead magnet and asks for your prospect’s name and email in exchange for it.
When they enter their email, they will receive the lead magnet and be entered into an email sequence where you can then promote different affiliate offers to them.
Many email autoresponder services also offer you free lead capture pages so that you don’t even need to set up your own website.
The good thing about a website though is that you have a domain and can create a brand around that. It will be much easier for people to trust you.
I know I went off track a bit in this article since it was about how to make money blogging through affiliate marketing but I felt that it would better serve you to get a fuller, more holistic understanding of affiliate marketing so that you take the best path for you.
Blogging can be a grind and you really need to be geared for it and have the right mindset about it otherwise you will start and not push through.
Probably setting up a mini niche site is the best approach or maybe a 2-page website will serve you best. You need to have the right information to get the best results.
If you still insist on the blogging path however, I will give you a bird’s eye overview of the main points so we remain relevant.
5 Steps to Make Money Blogging Through Affiliate Marketing
Step 1: Choose Your Niche
Choose a niche that you are passionate about or have sufficient experience or training in. These work better in the long term as they will be easier to create content for.
You can still research new areas you are not familiar with but I recommend that this be your second or third site once you have built up one or two around your training or passion.
Step 2: Pick at Least 3 Winning Products
Go to the ClickBank Marketplace and pick at least 3 winning products based on the selection criteria I talked about earlier on in this article.
Step 3: Do Keyword Research
Research topics that you can write about based on your products and niche. Check out this article for a full walkthrough of this process:
Step 4: Write Compelling Content
Write amazing content. Aim to write the best article on the web in that particular subject. Learn how to easily write good content in this article:
Step 5: Drive Traffic
Lastly, drive traffic to your blog. I highly recommend Pinterest as a traffic source while you wait for the search engine traffic to start coming in.
That’s it for this article. Please reach out to me and share your thoughts and comments in the comments section below.