Affiliate Marketing: How to Get Started
By: Jinger Jarrett
Affiliate marketing is the easiest way to start a business online if you don't have any specific area of expertise you can sell.
There are many reasons, but here are three reasons I would start market affiliate programs:
1. You don't need to create your own products,
2. You don't have to deal with customer service very often, and
3. You can create a business on just about any topic you want, including a hobbie.
Affiliate programs generate billions of dollars every year in revenue. There is plenty of room for growth, and so anyone can make money. If you're looking for an easy way to start a business online, affiliate programs are your answer.
When starting an affiliate business, there are three things you need to do to get started:
1. What will your topic be?
The first thing you need to do is write down several topics you're interested in. This can be anything. Don't limit yourself in this stage of your business. You're just getting started, so right now is the time to let your imagination run free.
Once you've chosen several topics, you want to do keyword research. Look for what's called "Long Tail Keywords". These are usually keyword phrases that have three or more keywords. Some of these you will be able to use. Others you will need to discard.
Then compare the amount of searches to the amount of results you find in the search engines. If a keyword phrase is really competitive, you may want to discard it.
What's important here is that you remember there must be an audience for whatever you choose to market. Also, since you're starting an affiliate business, you're not limited to the number of topics you can promote. It's a good idea to find three to five topics you are interested in and then diversify.
(Free keyword research tools are readily available throughout the internet. Do a search in your favorite search engine for "free keyword research".)
2. Will you build a website?
Although some would tell you that building a website is absolutely crucial to your affiliate marketing success, it really isn't. There are plenty of marketers who send traffic directly to the merchant using pay per click, or some other marketing technique that doesn't require a website.
The purpose of your website is what's critical here. You can build a site as simple as a one page lead capture page to capture email addresses. Give your visitors a free report or some other bonus for joining your list.
Personally, I've found that building content sites work much better for affiliate marketing because you can offer your visitors multiple products related to a topic. You can also add a subscription box to your website to build your list at the same time.
3. How will you promote your new business?
How you promote your affiliate website depends on several factors. Do you like to write? Does the technique you have chosen require a lot of time? Do you have some spare cash you can use to promote your new business? If you do, then you can combine your marketing with simple websites and earn your first commissions in days.
Internet marketing techniques to consider are: search engine optimization, forums, article writing, pay per click, and free classifieds. These work well with affiliate marketing. Choose one and try it for awhile. When you feel comfortable, choose another and add it to your marketing plan.
Before starting an affiliate business, you should consider these factors. After all, if you're looking for an easy way to start a business online, and you want to start earning quickly, affiliate marketing is the way to do it.
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