However, just getting involved in the affiliate marketing game doesn’t guarantee success. A lot of factors determine whether your entry into the affiliate world will create a marketing dynasty, will fizzle out unnoticed or will fall somewhere in between.
There are a few steps you can take, however, that may lead you on the path to a successful affiliate marketing effort. This is the first article in a series of five that will help you become the best affiliate that you can be!
1. Create a Great Site
You can’t display advertisers on your site if you don’t have a site on which to do it. You could cobble together a site that’s simply a blank page to slap ads on, but that isn’t going to attract many advertisers or much traffic.
If you really want to succeed as an affiliate, you need to put serious thought into what your site is going to be.
Do What You Like
Not that many people actually love auto insurance. That’s okay. The point is not to pick your overriding passion but you should pick something that interests you, something that will get you to want to work on the site very day.
If you have always understood the need for insurance and the desire to get affordable insurance to those who need it, a site based around insurance may be for you.
On the other hand, if you work in real estate, a site geared toward finding good mortgage loan rates and great deals on housing may be just right.
Take Your Site Seriously
Even if your affiliate marketing site has appropriate content, you don’t want to just throw everything together. Remember that you are trying to attract people who may stop at a site for only a few seconds. As a result, you need an eye-catching design and interesting content.
People won’t stay on your site and click ads just because you want them to.
Creating a site is just one part of a successful affiliate marketing strategy. Once you have a site that you are happy with, you are ready to move on to other factors that will place you firmly in the affiliate marketing world.
2. Fresh Content
In order to keep a website lively and drawing traffic, you must have fresh content. Ideally, there should be something new on your site every day for people to come back to. At the very least, something new should pop up once or twice a week.
It’s not hard to keep content fresh. You can write new articles every day or keep a store of articles and ration them out as needed. You can put RSS feeds on your site to provide automatic information, be it news, sports or stock updates.
The Importance Of Fresh Content
New content may not necessarily create more search engine attention than you garner from other methods. However, people use the Internet for new information.
The longer your site goes without providing such information, the more likely it is that your traffic will go elsewhere to stay amused and informed.
If you want affiliate marketing success, you cannot let that happen. Thus, fresh content is paramount.
You now have all the basic tools you need to create a great affiliate marketing campaign. The rest is up to you. Only your creativity, determination and confidence can truly make your affiliate program what you want it to be.
3. Finding Affiliate Partners
Finding affiliate partners isn’t hard to do. There are multiple websites dedicated to offering affiliate program opportunities. The challenge for you is finding the right advertising programs to bring maximum profitability to your site.
You may want to start by generating metrics for your site. These are statistics generated for you by various sites. They reveal important information about the performance of your site. You’ll learn how many people are visiting, the demographics of the people who are visiting, how long they stay on the site and which keywords are bringing them there.
This can help you know what advertisers to try to bring on and help the advertiser know that your site will benefit them in bringing them new business.
Choosing Appropriate Partners
Some sites may happily put banners of any company that wants to on their site. However, your chance of getting a significant number of clicks in this situation is low unless your site is wildly popular.
You are much better off posting links to affiliates who offer a product connected to your site. So, if you have real estate articles on your site, there should be links to real estate companies or real estate lead generation forms.
If your site gives poker tips, you can have plenty of ads from online poker affiliates on your pages.
The partnerships are how you make your money as an affiliate marketer, so choose them wisely. A brute force approach to this stage of the affiliate marketing process is easy and tempting, but probably won’t yield as positive long-term results as a measured, thoughtful approach.
4. Calls To Action
You can have a site that attracts traffic and has appropriate advertisers and still not be getting as many clicks as you would like. Why? One reason is that you may be missing a strong call to action. A call to action is content on your site that gets your visitors to do what you want, namely, click on your advertiser’s links.
How To Create A Strong Call To Action
To create a strong call to action, you simply need to develop a piece of content that speaks to your traffic and helps them understand why it is important that they perform the suggested action, be it to click on a banner ad, order a project or fill out a lead generation form.
You need to draw visitors with compelling copy and provide strong reasons for why they need to perform the action.
You have to tell your visitors how to perform that action (fill out the simple form on this site to get information about cheap auto insurance rates). You also have to let them know when to perform the action (now, before it’s too late, of course!).
The Importance Of Calls To Action
Even if a visitor is interested and motivated to buy, he may still need a little push. Remember that while your visitors are just enjoying your site, they are free from any kind of commitment.
Once visitors to your site follow your call to action, they are making a commitment. You need to convince them that it’s something they want, so they can click with confidence.
5. Building Links
What is link building? It’s based on the idea that search engines are attracted to sites that have a lot of links to them. If other sites link to your site, the search engines read it as being important.
It makes sense — if others who can actually read have recognized the importance of your site, the search engines should recognize it too. However, how do you build these links?
Link Building Tips
There are a number of ways to build links for your site. One of the best is simply to trade links. You agree to put a link to someone else’s site on yours and they agree to do the same.
Do this enough times and you build a strong link network. In addition, posting to other sites with useful information, as either a guest content provider or a blog commenter, is another way to generate links.
The Importance Of Links
Having multiple inbound links on the Internet can generate traffic in two ways: directly through the sites linking to you and through the added attention that search engines provide. Good links lead to good traffic. When you have good traffic, you are ready to add advertisers.