What is affiliate Marketing?
Does affiliate marketing work?
If you have been blogging for a little while you must have heard the term 'Affiliate Marketing' many many times... with people advising you to start doing it.... but
- But what does it really mean?
- What are the pros and cons?
- How does it work?
- Can you really make an income from it?
- Does affiliate marketing work in all niches?
Let's clarify this with straight answers!
This article contains affiliate links
What is Affiliate Marketing?
Definition of Affiliate Marketing
A marketing arrangement by which an one entity pays a commission to another independent entity for traffic or sales generated from its referrals.
But let's break it down
- Company A sells a product or a service P
- Company A set up agreements with other entities (such as B) to promote P
- Company/blog B promotes and refers to P within its own community and customers
- Person Lambda in Company/blog B community, follows the referral and buys P
- Company A gives commission to Company/blog B for the referral (either a fixed amount or a percentage of the price)
Note: Some advanced affiliate programs pay commission based on visit to product page and not sale, but most pay by sales.
Why do Affiliate Marketing?
Before you jump into it, let's discuss the pros and cons of Affiliate Marketing:
Affiliate Marketing has many pros:
- You are actually helping people, they are looking for your recommendations
- It requires work but far less than creating your own product if you are not ready for that
- It is mostly passive income
- It can be started with some programs without even having a website
- It does not cost you money
But be aware of the few potential issues:
- These are not your products - you don't control the quality changes,
- You have no control over price changes
- Product can be discontinued and you can lose your income overnight.
- It is getting competitive
How does Affiliate Marketing Work for you?
Here is a basic step-by-step of how it works
- You identify a product or service you want to promote
- You apply for their affiliate program (directly with the company or via an affiliate network program or by contacting them if nothing is in place)
- You get accepted (or not) to be an affiliate
- You get access to affiliate links with unique codes embedded that will tell the system that if the visitor buys the product it was via you
- You write content to promote the product and include the link
- Your audience trusts your referral, clicks on the link and buys the product
- The affiliate program pays you a commission
Other notions do come into play such as cookies and deep linking... But this remains the basic concept of how Affiliate marketing works for you.
Want to know more about how to set up a strong affiliate strategy?
Consider following the steps of Michelle who has mastered it.
She has made over $100,000 in affiliate income in February 2017!!! and this has been going on for a while!!!!
She shares her process in the course Make Sense of Affiliate Marketing.
Does Affiliate Marketing work?
Does affiliate marketing work, really?
Jut look at Marie Forleo's B school... A big part of her program's success is thanks to Affiliate Marketing by alumni.
Like with everything else. It does not fall from the sky! There are some conditions to fulfill and work to do.
Conditions for affiliate marketing to work
- You need a minimum of an audience to promote to
- Your must build trust in your relationship with your audience
- You must understand what your readers or followers want or need
- You must believe in the product you are promoting
- You must understand the marketing technics of promoting a product
And you must disclose the presence of affiliate links!
Does it work in all niche?
And does affiliate marketing work in all niches?
YES again - it can work in all niches, even in the budgeting one!!!!
Let's have a look at 9 of them to see how they succeed at it.
There will be variability in income over the exemples. Just because you see a lower number in one niche does not mean it is less profitable. It is just because not many bloggers provide their income report.
Those examples are here to show you, that you can make money with affiliates in all niches.
And let's be real....
The exemples are advanced bloggers to show you what you could aspire to. Most bloggers do not make that much. I am just showing you that IT IS POSSIBLE.
Affiliate marketing for TRAVEL niche?
Sharon from where is Sharon and Digital Nomad Wanabee shares that her affiliate income in Feburary 2016 was $6,232.
Here is what she says:
"As a rough approximation, about half of my affiliate income is from hotel booking websites: HotelsCombined, Booking and Agoda. A third is from Amazon and the rest is a mixture of small ones like Wild Earth, eBay and Airbnb."
And in January 2017 she reached $11,712.
Affiliate marketing for MONEY SAVING / BUDGETING niche?
Rosemarie from The Busy Budgeter shares that her affiliate income in January 2017 was $19,300.
Here is what she says:
"I focus on a core group of affiliates that I think almost everyone in my target audience should be using. Since I run a budgeting website, I factor cost into the equation"
Affiliate marketing for FOOD niche?
Pinch of Yum's November 2016 Income report declares more than $10,000 in affiliate income: half of it related to blogging and half of it through Amazon affiliate links. So still $5,000 from food-related articles!!!
Affiliate marketing for FINANCE niche?
For February 2017, the Millenium Money Man reports $3,013 in affiliate income. Over $1000 comes from a tool to help people with student loans and interest.
Affiliate marketing for PARENTING niche?
Paula from Easy Baby Life is making around $500 a month with her affiliate links after 1 year of blogging. For the moment mostly from Amazon.
Affiliate marketing for PHOTOGRAPHY niche?
Darren from Digital Photography school has shares is income report for the first half of 2016 both both his blog. The photography business provides the biggest income.
And 46% of that income comes from Affiliates!
He does not share numbers, but considering he is running a team and all, that must be quite significant.
Affiliate products would be Photography processing software, photography equipment, photography course...
Affiliate marketing for FASHION / BEAUTY niche?
I can find a lot less income report for fashion blogger. Probably because it works really really well...
Who what wear reports that some bloggers are making 6 figure from affiliate networks such as RewardStyle. But I can't fin where the information comes from.
For example, Rosevine reports for February 2017: $4,775 from Amazon. And she shares 100 affiliate networks for fashion and beauty bloggers.
Affiliate marketing for PETS niche?
I have not found income reports for pet bloggers but I am sure affiliate marketing works for them as people are ready to spend money on their pet.
Affiliate income could come from Pet insurance, Toys for pet, nutrition products, grooming accessories....
For example, Conscious Cat has create a store with amazon products she recommends to take care of your cat.
Affiliate marketing for BLOGGING niche?
Abby from Just a girl and her Blog, declared in her December 2016 income report that she made $27,507 with affiliates
According to her post, it included hosting system, theme providers, email marketing system, courses...
and so on!
Does Affiliate Marketing work with small traffic ?
Yes it is, especially if you are promoting expensive products that are a really good fit for your audience.
You won't, of course, make the numbers you see above but you will be able to start making money from your blog.
- According to Suzi from Start a mom blog, Carolina from MamaInstincts makes over $1,000 per month in Amazon affiliate commission with under 10,000 monthly page views.
- Tootsmomistired reports that in February 2017, with just over 10000 page views, she made $415 in affiliate sales.
But it is Not just a question of traffic...
The reality is that some really really big blogs with huge traffic do not make any money with affiliates.
Because it is not just a matter of putting a link in...
So should you implement Affiliate Marketing?
- Do you have people reading your website or following you on social media?
- Do you think they trust you?
- Do you have a product you love that would be useful to your readers?
- Do you want to make passive income?
And as explained above, this is not just a matter of adding a link... So:
Are you ready to learn how to create and implement an affiliate marketing strategy?
Learn, Implement and Start
earning money with your blog!
Michelle has been growing her affiliate income and earning over $50,000 a month from it over the past year. And thankfully, she has put all she has learnt into a course to help you get started.
The Making Sense of Affiliate Marketing course is self paced, full of tips and comes with access to one of my favorite and most useful Facebook groups.
You might be interested in: