If there’s one type of e-commerce venture that is attracting headlines at the moment it’s affiliate marketing. If you’ve heard about these schemes and are curious, you have good reason to find out more. They are fairly cheap to set up, and if you do it correctly the dividends can be rewarding. So what are four crucial steps to be aware of should you decide to launch this type of business?
Make the optimum choice of affiliate network
It goes without saying that choosing your affiliate well is so important in the longer term there’s no point in simply rushing into whatever product line seems currently successful. Take the time to evaluate what various affiliate networks will be able to guarantee on a regular basis.
Foremost among these considerations should be your expectations for commission. Within affiliate marketing a general rule of thumb is that anything less than 60% is probably not going to be worth putting in all the effort for. Take the example of internet giant ClickBank, a retailer of both physical and digital products, with a six million-strong global client base. Affiliate programs can not only take advantage of their high turnover, some of their items offer an even higher commission (the best will achieve nearer 75%). Keep an eye out for products retailing for over $155 – even if the commission rate drops to 50% you’ll still make a bit of income.
ClickBank also have a gravity rating which they base on the amalgamated total generated by affiliates in one week. This is an indicator of which products are shifting particularly well.
Select the optimum affiliate products
Affiliate marketing relies on focusing on niche markets rather than attempting to compete on a level playing field. You will be targeting the same customers who are attracted to your host retail organization, so make it your mission to comprehensively understand their market.
Whatever type of product you are championing, identify the specific needs of the typical customer browsing through your web pages. List the items that are purchased on a regular basis. This will allow you to identify the promotions that will be of special interest.
Another great tip is to join a free affiliate network. This is a straightforward procedure; firstly, visit website; secondly, begin networking with likeminded marketeers. Examples of these include the aforementioned Clickbank, but there are many others, such as Commission Junction. Membership is free once you’ve registered.
Narrow down your business parameters by doing a keyword search. This will produce a numerous affiliate products. A good tip is to try out products before adding them to your program. You should get to know as much as you can about the company behind the product. Does their website look polished and easy to navigate?
Utilize social media
Once you’ve built your web platform and your problem is well underway, you can use the power of social media to help with advertising your wares. Your best bet is to build a picture of authority within your chosen niche. That way you can tap into social media streams in order to place customers.
Use ‘pretty links’
One trick used by affiliate marketeers is to hide the link of the web address of the retail company, creating a custom URL. Software like Pretty Links will mask (cloak) this address, replacing it with a graphic. This will create a more professional image for you, and make your customer path more streamlined as well as developing your own branding. But you need to ensure you’re allowed to cloak links in this way, as some affiliate programs do not allow it.