I’m a huge fan of affiliate marketing, and I imagine you will be too. You may be thinking — what is affiliate marketing? I’ll be sure to explain the basics of it and my experiences with it as simply as I can through out this post.
Affiliate marketing allows individuals (or companies) to market and sell other companies products for a commission — usually a small percentage. The amazing thing about affiliate marketing is that you don’t have to worry about customer service, shipping, or anything in between. You can focus on driving traffic and getting sales. Each time you get a sale, you get paid, and the company that you are affiliated with handles everything else. If you find the right affiliate program, niche, and product to promote — it can be quite lucrative and stress free!
My first experience with Affiliate Marketing
I started to learn about internet marketing and the various possibilities that came with it when I was 17 years old. Skip forward a year — I was really bored one summer afternoon so I started browsing the internet as usual, and I eventually stumbled across a guide on affiliate marketing with Amazon Associates. I didn’t understand a lot of it, but I was bored enough to read the guide all the way through several times… It taught me the basics of Amazon’s Associate program, but it didn’t teach me anything about driving traffic.
Once I understood the basics, I started researching ways in which I could drive traffic to products on Amazon. While I was doing this research — Yahoo Answers kept appearing in my search results, and that’s when it hit me… I recognized that I could use Yahoo Answers to answer questions related to laptops (the product I wanted to promote) to drive traffic. That’s exactly what I ended up doing.
Fast forward a few days… I had over $125 in my affiliate account from a few hours of work. It was a combination of luck, the right product, and stumbling across the right platform. I ended up generating about $400 dollars my first month. Shortly afterwords though, Yahoo Answers updated their terms of service and no longer allowed affiliate links. My account was eventually banned and I was back to ground zero. Overall, It was a great learning experience!
My recent Affiliate Marketing experiment and results
Early last year I had another idea I wanted to experiment with using Amazon’s affiliate program, and a newly discovered platform. I started testing this idea March of 2015. It was a very simple idea, and it worked flawlessly for a while. My friend Gaitlan and I put in about ten hours of work each over the span of 2 weeks, and looking forward — these are our results:
We generated $117,137.17 dollars in revenue for Amazon from March until the end of December of 2015. I was paid $4064.89 in commission. The image above shows the results from the 20 hours of work we put in — the rest was auto pilot (minus a few experiments we tested that didn’t yield any results). Essentially we made $200+ dollars per hour.
All year-long (2015) we generated passive income: $700+ in August, $600+ in May and December, and the rest of the months ranged between $300-$450. It was a very simple idea that we decided to take action on and experiment with — anyone can do it.
Could you use an extra $300 – $700 dollars a month in complete passive income? I will be writing a guide on how you can do this.
If you would like to know when I complete my guide — Subscribe to my email list. (form on the right)
3 Popular Affiliate Programs
Below are three affiliate programs that are very popular amongst affiliate marketers. This post isn’t meant to be a guide — as I mentioned, I’ll be writing a guide that goes over everything when I’m ready. This post is an overview for beginners on affiliate marketing, and a few popular affiliate platforms.
Amazon’s affiliate program is one of the most widely used affiliate programs on the planet. They have millions of different products that you can choose from. Almost every product on Amazon is available to sell as an affiliate. You can click the link above to register an account with Amazon Associates. They require that you have a website — you can easily setup a blog over at Blogger.com for free, and use that as your website. It may take Amazon a few days to accept your affiliate application. You can find Amazon’s commission payout structure & caps here.
When anyone visits your affiliate link to a product on Amazon, a cookie will be stored on their computer that lasts for 24 hours — you’ll get commission for any products that the visitor ends up purchasing within 24 hours.
Amazon is the biggest and most trusted online retailer, and they are masters at converting visitors into buyers. It’s an incredible platform to join and utilize!
CJ Affiliate by Conversant was previously known as Commission Junction. It is another popular affiliate marketing platform. You can use CJ to find thousands of products to promote and make money with. This platform is a great solution for blog or website owners to connect with affiliate programs offered by thousands of online brands all on one central platform. You can search their marketplace to find a wide variety of items to promote. I don’t currently use CJ, but It is one of the most popular and widely used affiliate marketing platforms on the internet.
ClickBank is another popular online marketplace that connects digital content creators (eBooks, digital products) with affiliate marketers. They have grown to be one of the top affiliate networks in the United States. The commission structure on Clickbank varies — the product creators decide the commission percentage — most of them offer anywhere from 60% to 75%+ commission per sale. Keep in mind that Clickbank consists of digital products (not physical products), getting a sale on Clickbank is a lot harder than getting a sale on Amazon, but the money is definitely there. I have experimented with Clickbank in the past and had decent results. I haven’t used it for several years, but I will be testing some new ideas with Clickbank soon.
You are not limited to the three affiliate programs mentioned above — the majority of online retailer offer affiliate programs. You can scroll to the bottom of most retailer websites and look for an “affiliate” link. Click it, and follow the instructions to apply. You can also use Google search to quickly find affiliate programs. Example: “Best Buy affiliate program”.
You can have a lot of fun with affiliate marketing! It’s one of the best ways for beginners to learn how to make money online without the hassle of setting up an entire e-commerce business (building a product, shipping, customer service, web development, ect…). With affiliate marketing — you can jump right into the action. You don’t need a website — you just need to drive targeted traffic through your affiliate link(s).
I hope this overview has been insightful! Keep an eye out for my guide. I’ll email the details to my subscribers when it’s complete.
Do you have any questions related to affiliate marketing? Ask in the comments section below and I’ll be sure to answer them.