How to make more money as an affiliate
These are three strategies that have served me well and helped me dramatically increase the earnings of my blogs.
Always look to see whether a site has an affiliate program
As I’ve mentioned before, you should start getting in the habit of always checking to see whether the company you’re linking to has an affiliate program. You’ll probably be surprised at how many companies do have an affiliate or referral program of sorts. Start by checking the home page for a link to an affiliate’s page, and if you don’t find one, definitely follow up with an email.
I’ve learned that some companies have them but don’t advertise them and keep them private. Then some poor companies don’t even know what they are, and that gives you the opportunity to explain it to them and possibly be the first affiliate.
Just recently, I did this with a small company. I loved the service that it offered and was already promoting it on my site, but I asked about the affiliate program and after a nice email exchange, the company ended up creating one just because I asked. It took maybe 30 minutes of work on my part and allowed me to turn those links I already had on my site into money-earning affiliate links.
Search CJ.com for ideas
One of my favorite ways to find new affiliate programs (and companies, for that matter) that I wasn’t aware of is to search through CJ’s list of advertisers.
Once you log in, click “Get Links” from the home page.
Next, you’ll see a categorized list of advertisers:
You should first find the most relevant categories and click to see what unknown advertisers or affiliate programs are available to you.
I regularly scour these listings and click and investigate any new companies that show up.
Just click the name of the company to get a more detailed description of what it does and offers as well as a link to the home page.
Just from the list above, I’m already getting some ideas for my wedding blog (if I had one). I see photo-stamps, which would be an awesome idea for a post. What better way to customize your wedding invitation than to use a postage stamp with a photo of the happy couple?
Also, “My M&Ms” I understand allows you to create your own custom color combination of M&Ms. This would be perfect on the tables at a wedding reception or in goodie bags.
Each of these options is an interesting article on its own, but even if you didn’t want to write articles specifically about these products, you could write something like “10 Ways to Customize Your Wedding” and find eight other clever ideas. (You could find these in five minutes on Pinterest.)
A list like this that just happens to mention a few interesting products could work very well since it’s something readers want to share and since you have some affiliate links included, you have a chance to make some sales, as well.
Pull top posts in analytics and search CJ for affiliate links you can insert
This is my favorite way getting more out of my blog. Go to Google Analytics and then on the left sidebar click Behavior > Site Content > All Pages.
You will see a list of your posts and pages on your site with the most traffic. This is a great place to begin looking for affiliate-linking opportunities.
After all, these pages are getting traffic, so doesn’t it make sense you should first focus your energy there?
Unless you stay on topic more than most bloggers I know, some of these posts will veer slightly off topic, and they may not fall into the category you searched for in CJ in the previous step. If not, then search for the appropriate category or use the search bar and see what comes up.
Next, ask yourself, why people are visiting the page. If you can understand their intent, then it will give you some great ideas on products that may be helpful for them.
Years ago, I created a post on one of my blogs called something like “Bible verses about death.” After doing this exercise, and from reading the comments, it dawned on me that many of the visitors were coming to the page looking for verses to use in a eulogy they were working on.
I did some digging and discovered an ebook that helped people write a great eulogy. And it had an affiliate program. I then put a link in the post just mentioning it as a potentially helpful resource. And it was, and people bought it, and I started making a little money from a post that hadn’t really earned anything before.
A warning about affiliate marketing:
Stay pleasant and genuinely try to help your readers with the products you promote. And if you don’t or wouldn’t use it yourself, don’t promote it.
I have found that the most success in affiliate marketing comes from looking for win-win situations. When you find a product that will really help your readers, you’re on to something. If you’re just pushing something on them because it pays a large commission, you will quickly chase all your loyal readers away.
Your job is to help make your readers’ lives better, and the more you can do that, the more success you will have. This really applies to all aspects of blogging.
“You can get everything in life you want if you will just help others get what they want.” -Zig Ziglar