Have you given up on affiliate marketing?• Many bloggers complain that affiliate marketing is a lot of effort for little return.• They’ve posted banners, spent time joining programs and never seen results.• We all get some dreadful and sometimes misleading recruitment emails from affiliate managers who don’t understand how bloggers work.• If you’re savvy about affiliate marketing, you can earn thousands of dollars a year. Many bloggers earn five or even six figures from affiliate programs.• In order to succeed, you need to know how to integrate affiliate marketing links on your existing blog.
Estimate Your Potential Blog Earnings• Estimated Monthly Earnings = (Estimated Monthly Impressions/1000) x Average CPM• For example: (10,000 impressions/1000) x $10 CPM= $100 monthly income ($1200 annual income)• CPM varies widely depending on type of site!• It’s ok to use multiple monetization strategies on your blog. For example, I’ve used both CPM Ad Networks and Affiliate Programs.• Use EPC to determine potential affiliate revenue. In many cases, affiliate offers are a better option than CPM Ad Networks.
Common Blogger Affiliate Marketing Mistakes• Why do so many bloggers say that affiliate marketing doesn’t work for them? – Random sidebar banner ads – Shopping sections on your site that are not connected to content – Labeling every single link “affiliate” – Posting random coupons – Posting affiliate links to products that are cheaper elsewhere – Not being authentic and honest 4
Affiliate Marketing Works• Smart Affiliate Marketing: – Integrated text links – Consistently using affiliate links – Sharing information that actually helps your reader – SEO-optimized posts – Carefully selecting merchants based on price, product and EPC – Exclusive coupons – Being a comprehensive source of coupons, deals, niche information – Utilizing appropriate tools such as Video, YouTube, Pinterest, Polyvore or Olioboard 5
CPM Ad Networks Affiliate links are integrated into every relevant post! CPA & Paid PlacementOther options: CPC ads, sponsorships,text links, brand ambassadorships
Affiliate Example fromCoolMomTech.com•SEO optimized post• Integrated affiliate linkswithin post• Promoted throughsocial media channels• Authentic selection ofproducts with genuinereview and useful readerinformation
Affiliate Example fromWhoWhatWhere:• Use of photos• Affiliate links areintegrated and providedas a reader service
AffiliateExample fromStyleMePretty:• Providing toolsand resources forreaders• Inspiration boardswill be shared &used by readers.Affiliate links areincluded.
How to Select Affiliate Programs• Pick a niche that fits your expertise or your existing blog – If your existing blog isn’t a fit for affiliate marketing, consider a mini-blog site just for your selected niche.• How to Evaluate Potential Niches: – Search Engine Traffic • Google Traffic Estimator https://adwords.google.com/select/TrafficEstimatorSandbox • Google Trends www.google.com/trends • Google Insights www.google.com/insights/search/ – What’s Hot on Twitter: • Popular hashtags • Trending topics • Use sites such as SocialMention.com to evaluate trends • If you’re fast, you can get a sale!• Consider Your Existing Traffic and Blog Stats: – Do you rank on any keywords? – Check your stats to see what keywords rank for you and to see which posts have the most traffic. – Revisit your old posts and integrate affiliate links!
Working With Affiliate Networks• Do Your Homework before Registering: – Prepare a short description of your business model – Make sure your website is live – Build connections with the networks• Prepare Your Marketing Summary – Provide 1-2 Pages of Information – Brief Bio – Website Name – Screenshot (if available) – Merchant/s or Categories of Interest – High-Level Promotional Methods (e.g. email, SEO, SEM, social media, mobile, incentive, etc)• How to Handle Rejection? – Use that marketing summary and send a polite email to the network and the account manager!
Legal Stuff• FTC Regulations: – Mention affiliate marketing in your site disclosure – Do not make false claims about products – If you only share your honest opinion about products, you should be safe.• Affiliate Nexus Regulations: – What is a nexus? – How would this impact you? – Don’t rely only on Amazon• Taxes: – Affiliate companies only issue a 1099 if you have over $600 in commissions, so you need to track your affiliate revenue as you still have tax liability even if you earn less than $600.• Getting Paid: – One benefit of working with affiliate networks is guaranteed payment. – Independently-managed programs have sometimes failed to pay affiliates.
Affiliate Links and Your Search Rankings• Many bloggers are concerned that having affiliate links on their site will harm their search rankings.• Broken links can impact search rankings, and this is one of the more common problems bloggers face with affiliate marketing.• Run the Wordpress Broken Link Checker frequently on your site to fix broken links.• Managing your links in a tool like Thirsty Affiliates or Pretty Links will give you an easy way to convert links if an affiliate program changes platforms or goes out of business.
Updating Your Existing Blog Posts• Review your blog stats to prioritize your affiliate updates – Manually update most popular posts with affiliate links – Don’t forget to add affiliate links to your photos/images – Use deep-links to individual products instead of brand links whenever possible• Gather your best blog posts by topic into guides/resources – Create additional content or introduction for each guide/resource• Track coupon codes/sales for your favorite products and post codes when relevant to your readers– link to or repurpose existing reviews or posts.• Pinterest has stripped out many affiliate links, so post link to your blog not directly to the product on Pinterest.• Use automated services and plug-ins to convert old posts. For example: http://wordpress.org/extend/plugins/seo-automatic-links/
Simplify the Link Creation Process• Manual Links: – Pull banners and links from affiliate networks or affiliate newsletters• Utilize Automatic Tools: – Skimlinks – Viglinks – Zemata• Wordpress Plugins – WordPress Link Cloaking Program: Turns targeted phrases into affiliate links automatically – Amazon Media Manager and WP-Amazon plugin – PrettyLinks Tool: http://blairwilliams.com/pretty-link/ – ThirstyAffiliates Tool: http://thirstyaffiliates.com/