Marketing Ideas for the Niche Affiliate Marketer
Affiliate marketing programs can be a boon for online publishers. You’ve got an opportunity if you have relevant traffic that businesses want to engage with, but you need to know the ins and outs to start with affiliate marketing successfully.
Affiliate marketing is a great way to leverage great content for money. Affiliate marketers partner with companies to drive traffic to their business. This can happen through text links or even direct recommendations.
How do you make money doing it? Companies pay you when you drive traffic that results in conversions. When people go to your website buy their product, you get credit for the results.
It’s simple in practice, but monetizing your website and becoming financially successful aren’t the same thing. Marketers need the right strategies and affiliate marketing programs to get ahead.
Finding Your Niche with Affiliate Marketing Programs
Don’t be fooled into thinking affiliate marketing is easy.
Just like any business venture, affiliate marketing is about relationships. You need to maintain good relationships and drive real value for your partners. If you don’t they’re likely to drop you.
You also have third parties depending on the value of your content. If you don’t keep content relevant and fresh, you lose traffic. Loss of traffic can affect both you and your partners that rely on you to drive visitors to purchase.
How do you attract relevant traffic and drive them to clients’ websites? How do you attract clients in the first place? The key is working in a popular and lucrative niche.
Millions of websites churn content identical to each another. They are usually related to common topics with information users can find anywhere. There are no distinguishing factors from one to the next.
A website that publishes content in a niche needs to have a narrow scope. Ideally, 100% of users interested in the subject would visit the site.
Advertisers interested in those audiences realize niche websites have exclusive content their target audience consumes. That makes niche content areas ideal for affiliate marketing.
Earning Money with Affiliate Marketing
So how does earning money through affiliate marketing programs work?
Affiliate marketing’s foundation is in revenue sharing. Your website serves as an extension of companies’ marketing and advertising. Your success in that capacity earns you a share of sales.
These companies are known as merchants, sellers, or brands. They can range in size from individuals to Fortune 500 companies. Think about your audience first to choose the most relevant merchants.
Not just any company will do. If your partners aren’t related to your niche, you will turn off your visitors. Your efforts will be wasted and possibly hurt your brand.
Choosing the right affiliate partner is the most important step. You should review affiliate marketing partners and their programs to ensure they’re safe and reliable. Consider the following seven criteria as you look for your next opportunity.
1. Commission Rate
This is often the first factor in choosing the right program. But it’s not as simple as choosing the highest rate.
Merchants that offer high commission rates often have lower conversion rates. Merchants with lower rates may have better conversion rates. With the latter, you’ll make more money even with a lower commission rate.
You will be able to compare commission rates across merchants. Choose a rate that is competitive in your field. It doesn’t have to be the highest.
2. Conversion Rate
You should get access to merchants’ claimed conversion rates. Keep in mind that this rate might not align with your affiliate efforts. Different traffic sources will drive higher or lower conversion rates.
For example, a site similar to yours might drive very low conversion rates. Others might be very high. You can’t count on your traffic’s conversion rate to be the same as the median rate.
3. Average Transaction Size
What are your potential partners selling? The highest conversion rates won’t yield many results if they’re selling cheap products. If they’re selling expensive equipment, commission payouts might be scarce.
Be sure these qualities meet your business goals. You may like larger but infrequent payouts. You may want a steady stream of smaller payments instead.
Leaks occur when conversions merchants should attribute to you are not. This can happen when one of your visitors reads about the merchant on your website but bypasses it. Some merchants block attribution deliberately.
They will add features or make excuses so that your traffic doesn’t register. They might encourage visitors from your site to buy through different channels. It’s your job to make sure your connections are functioning properly.
5. Affiliate Technologies
Affiliate marketing programs should have secure technologies that maintain fair attribution. You should be able to depend on this technology to calculate and even make your payments.
As an affiliate, you can choose to work through only specific networks. This prevents you from working with certain merchants. But the third-party network ensures you can trust the results.
Some merchants request that affiliates work through their own affiliate marketing programs. This opens more opportunities to affiliates. You must ensure their technology and methods are trustworthy.
6. Payment Frequency
How often will you be paid? If you’re making a living through affiliate marketing, it should be frequent. Consider commission and conversion rates as factors as well.
Don’t build partnerships if you’ll regret these conditions later. You’re in business for yourself and you deserve decent terms.
7. One-Time or Recurring Commissions
For many merchants, paying for each transaction makes the most sense. They immediately compensate you for each transaction that originates from your site. But what if they’re transaction sizes are very small?
In this case, the merchant might offer recurring commissions. This is where you are paid in sums following repeat business. Most often this is for subscription-style services where the same customer pays each month.
Be sure you understand the credibility and business models of your partners. Keep in mind they’re partnering with you for a reason. If your content drives real results, your future as an affiliate looks bright.