Mistake #3: Giving your friend’s product a glowing review without actually being familiar with your friend’s product. This happens a lot in the affiliate marketing (and book marketing) world unfortunately. It’s a “scratch my back and I’ll scratch yours” type of situation. By all means, give your friend a glowing review, but if you haven’t actually read their book or taken their course or tried their product, don’t talk about it as though you have. Readers deserve honest recommendations! (Here’s an example of me helping to announce the launch of my friend’s book while being clear I hadn’t read it.)
If you are building a site that has the potential for information that will never age and remain useful for your audience, you have the opportunity to create what is known as evergreen content. It’s important to carry out extensive keyword research before planning any evergreen content for a site like this, as your site could hugely benefit from the proper usage of keywords within such content. 
Building an engagement or following is mostly done through social media. The first step is having a Facebook page or a Twitter account of your website so you can share new posts and other relevant info to others.
In April 2008 the State of New York inserted an item in the state budget asserting sales tax jurisdiction over Amazon.com sales to residents of New York, based on the existence of affiliate links from New York–based websites to Amazon.[41] The state asserts that even one such affiliate constitutes Amazon having a business presence in the state, and is sufficient to allow New York to tax all Amazon sales to state residents. Amazon challenged the amendment and lost at the trial level in January 2009. The case is currently making its way through the New York appeals courts.
It’s not that being an Amazon affiliate is difficult, it’s a fairly easy platform to use and get sales from. The problem is with building an “Amazon Affiliate SITE” which is different from just using the Amazon Affiliate program.
So make sure to balance out your offers with lots of valuable non-promotional content. Every once in a while (say, every one in four emails) you can include a specific call to action to ask your readers to buy a product.
Do they have a good reputation among other affiliates? This is one reason why being involved with other affiliate marketers is valuable. If you haven’t heard of an affiliate program before, ask around.
Affiliate links to share. Once you have proven yourself to be a trustworthy source of information on topics important to your audience, you can begin to recommend affiliate products or services to them. This entails applying to affiliate programs and sharing your unique affiliate links for products you promote (more below).
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Iconic clothing brand Lacoste leveraged unique consumer data from Slice Intelligence to find and acquire high-value customers. By creating targeted seed audiences, Lacoste reached new consumers with similar purchase behavior from competitor brands and major retailers. Compared to other prospecting tactics, the Slice data improved performance:
I have started looking at affiliate networks and finding products to promote that way. Also going to try to utilize a Youtube channel with promotion, as well as some paid advertising. It all works with the right amount of patience. I do have an Amazon Affiliate account that I can link too, but diversifing and learning to branch out is key. Truthfully I do not think the Amazon associate program is all that newbie friendly.
Only Cookware. This is one of several sites run by Amazon “super affiliates” Paula and Wanda. Their reviews feature affiliate links for visitors to purchase the products on Amazon, which nets them a commission in the neighborhood of 8.5%.
It’s much easier to work on something if you’re passionate about it. Plus, when you have a passion, you’re usually quite knowledgeable about it too, so that definitely helps. For example if you have a passion about about makeup, your niche of choice might be makeup related, too. 
Great article, and so true. Amazon has built a monster brand that they have to protect and with their extensive T/C a site is going to be in violation at some point. Let’s be real, Amazon really does not need affiliate sites anyway, when I want something I usually go directly there anyway and read customer review.
Affiliate marketing is also called “performance marketing”, in reference to how sales employees are typically being compensated. Such employees are typically paid a commission for each sale they close, and sometimes are paid performance incentives for exceeding objectives.[21] Affiliates are not employed by the advertiser whose products or services they promote, but the compensation models applied to affiliate marketing are very similar to the ones used for people in the advertisers’ internal sales department.
This is one area that is often overlooked as an “out of my hands” part of the affiliate marketing funnel. Once you’ve sent a visitor to the merchant site, all you can do is cross your fingers and hope they ultimately complete whatever action is necessary for you to get your commission. That’s partially true I suppose. But you have more input here than you may realize.
Formerly Commission Junction, CJ Affiliate by Conversant reaches millions of consumers shopping online through their affiliate marketing network. The Conversant, Inc. companies include Commission Junction, Dotomi, Greystripe, Mediaplex, and ValueClick Media.
When you do, you’ll see they run their affiliate program via ShareASale (a popular affiliate network). So, in order to be able to recommend Genesis to your audience, you’ll sign up with ShareASale first. Then you can apply for the StudioPress affiliate program within your ShareASale dashboard.
I’ll use MoneySavingExpert.com as an example again. The site has over 154,000 likes on its Facebook page and it connects with the audience by sharing links to content but also asking money-saving/budgeting related questions. The highly engaged readers then visit the website, where they read content and no doubt make purchases.
Google it. Search for terms like “(company) affiliate program.”  For example, “Target affiliate program” or “Amazon affiliate program.” If your first search doesn’t turn up anything, try again. Don’t give up too easily. Sometimes there are slight variances in word usage or terms.
With the emergence of search engines in the mid-1990’s, the internet ballooned into a massive e-commerce and information machine. Website owners were creating valuable content and providing tremendous benefits to their visitors, and these website owners wanted to be compensated for their hard work. Early forms of online advertising like CPM or fixed placement started seeing competition from emerging, more accountable forms of online advertising, like affiliate marketing. So, what is affiliate marketing?
ShareASale. A large network offering things like Genesis (here’s why I use Genesis for my WordPress theme), Tasty Pins (the Pinterest plugin for bloggers), Minted (invitations, calendars, gifts), eShakti (reasonably priced custom made clothes).
This is a short book, a VERY short book. I read it all in 15 minutes! It covers the various types of internet marketing, and gives an overview of ways to expand your audience. Basically, this book IS an overview of it all.
Pick a niche you are passionate about, and confirm other people are passionate about it. the best way to do this is to type the main keyword of your niche into Amazon’s search box. If you see dozens and hundreds of products related to your niche (with lots of product reviews) it’s typically a good niche to get into.
Do you need some extra cash in your pocket to pay the bills, or save up for Christmas? A little extra income to buffer your savings? How about setting up a full-time business at home? Earning an income online using affiliate marketing is a perfect way to do all these things, without spending huge amounts of time or money doing it.
Some good tips. I fully agree that it’s all about trust and it is always good to recommend an affiliate product that you have actually used. Why risk your reputation on a product you don’t know if it’s any good or not? If people buy one dodgy product from your site, they will probably never make that mistake again. That it why my blog strongly advocates ethical affiliate marketing. It’s the best long term stragey for affiliate marketing success.
Some are more profitable than others, but usually most of your affiliate income will come from one or two “ringers” — core products that just about everyone in your audience needs and which also pay a good commission.
The other good thing about starting early is that you’ll learn a lot about affiliate marketing. Most of the lessons and tips that I’ve shared in this series of posts have come directly from my own experimenting with Amazon’s Affiliate program.
Great post Leanne, it’s always great to see affiliate marketing in a concise and to the point fashion. When using analytics to track conversions, what factors do you feel are the most important to focus on for affiliate marketers? Where do you see a lot of affiliate campaigns fall flat in terms of optimizing their campaigns?
I’ve talked about using multiple links in a post but another way to increase conversions on a particularly hot product is to promote it more than once, over time. I only do this on very popular or highly anticipated products but it certainly works well.
No matter how big your business gets, you’ll always be living on rented land if your business is completely dependent on someone else. It can be brought to the ground with a single algorithm change or a policy update.
You don’t necessarily have to have a huge site or lots of traffic. Consider emailing an affiliate program’s contact person (look for contact info on the site or in affiliate newsletters) if you send a lot of leads their way, rank well in the search engines for a related keyword or have a high conversion rate. Make your email compelling. Read my tips here. You just have to be a good fit and provide excellent value to the merchant. Another good resource for this is here.
As a leading Cost per Action (CPA) affiliate network, CommissionSoup cultivates optimal marketing relationships by providing qualified leads with transparent and scalable solutions. While we have always believed in the benefits of transparency and collaboration for the good of the whole, the consultation and expertise of our experienced teams have also driven the results our clients have obtained over the years.
Technically, a guy earning $300,000/month in revenue could be worse off than the guy making a steady $100/day with no outgoings. Admittedly he would have to be blind, dumb, deaf, drunk and stupid to continue swallowing such a skinny margin, but it highlights one of the rare laws of affiliate marketing:
​Be sure to check what kind of customer support you can expect from your affiliate program once you have signed up. Do your research online and if possible, speak to other sellers using the program to get their thoughts. Can you speak to someone via phone or Skype or do you have to wait 72 hours for email responses? Be clear on this because trust me, you will need support at one point or another. 

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