One of the most popular affiliate marketing programs is Amazon Associates by Amazon. To be an affiliate marketer, you are required to own traffic-driven websites as a prerequisite. Without having one, you aren’t likely to be eligible. But, hey! It’s never too late, right?
A website is your foremost asset to earn money from affiliate programs. Build your affiliate marketing website after you completed reading this free guide for beginners. Are you ready?
Let’s get started!
What is affiliate marketing?
Affiliate marketing is any program that allows e-commerce merchants to market their products inexpensively. By doing so, they should make a deal with affiliate marketers – who will then advertise their products on a separate site. Every time a sale (or any condition) is fulfilled through an affiliate’s referral link, the merchant will give the marketer a split from the revenue called “commission.”
Steps to Become an Affiliate Marketer
Choose your niche wisely.
What should be your specialty? Would you choose a niche based off what’s already prominent? Would you choose a niche that’s popular at the moment? Or would you rather opt for what interests you the most?
This initiative might be the most mind-boggling among other steps. It needs heedful and elaborate deliberation.
Reflect intensively if the topics within your niche can grant you profits. Are there going to be products sellable and endorsable within this niche?
For instance, suppose your chosen niche is all about the political issues of your locality. You know there’s not even a whiff of potential earnings from it.
Focus on a smaller community, but don’t go too deep. Just choose the medium unit on which your niche will be based. To illustrate, if we say your niche is all about physical health, that’s too broad. If we say your niche is the ketogenic diet, in particular, it will be too tight. How about weight loss?
Make a content plan.
Organize an outline of your topics for a period of time. By preparing a content plan, you ensure to create and upload content as scheduled. It is especially important when your site is still new on the web and needs to increase traffic first.
Keyword research is the most common strategy you can basically apply to content creation. Learn and master it with SEO (search engine optimization). It is one essential operation to garner audiences.
These keywords are usually FAQs. Because you know what the people are looking for and what they want to find out, the algorithms will lead them to your site while you satisfy their intent.
Again, a content plan will make you write articles or create content regularly. The more you post, the higher the optimization and the traffic will favour you.
Since you are about to build your affiliate marketing website, starting to make product reviews on your niche is a must. To give you an example, here are a few content plan entries:
Best Gaming Phones in 2021
Top 10 Mobile Phones for Gaming
Top Gaming Laptops for 2021
Best Video Gaming Consoles 2021
New 5G Android Phones 2021
Top Performance Mobile Phones for every Game
How to Build Perfect Gaming Laptop Set-up
Gaming Phones Price and Specs
Learn to advertise your affiliate products.
Promotion of products can be done all by yourself. You can advertise in a lot of ways. As a matter of fact, you may do it for free.
Yes, free, no fees. To do so, you must have different social media accounts already. Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and TikTok are just some platforms where you have a great chance of gaining friends and followers fast.
Advertise products on these platforms similarly to how you write your product reviews. This is in the form of captions, though, and you have a limited word count. Just make it shorter and more interesting. You may even upload a video of you using the product or something.
Besides that, tell your followers you will host a live webinar. What is it for?
You know that a lot of YouTube business personalities are doing this, too. The point of it is to teach people something. But really, to sell something.
Have you ever thought why some of them host these live webinars for free? To gain enough potential buyers, perhaps. Everybody wants free and that must be your offer, too. Tell them you have something informational to impart with, and bring your affiliate products to the spotlight thereafter.
If you want a stress-free sort of advertisement, you should teach yourself how to make Facebook Ads and Google Ads. Or hire an ads specialist otherwise.
How to create an affiliate marketing website?
Finally, after heedful contemplation of what niche to particularly focus on, you may now build your first affiliate marketing website. Here’s a guide to follow:
Purchase a Domain Name
It shouldn’t be hard to name your website once you figured out your niche beforehand. When you buy a domain, it becomes your address on the web and your personal branding. Make certain also that it somehow bonds with the niche you’re about.
A domain enables targeted people to identify and find your site easily. That’s why it’s important to keep it simple, memorable yet unique. You don’t want to acquire a “likely the same” name with pre-existing sites.
The cost of a domain name is approximately $10 per year. You can buy it on either recommended registrars like GoDaddy and Namecheap.
Set up a Web Host
Your website needs something to host itself. A web host acts as a premise for all the contents of your website. It will store your site’s database. Hence, in case of technical problems come up, you are able to retrieve your site through automatic backup services.
There are copious hosting companies to choose from. There are also affordable web hosting services, but most of them limit domain name selections.
Just be careful when choosing a web host. Sometimes, they may not cater to you with the expected services. If they suddenly stop operating, they might refund the payment but there’s no turning back for your website.
The package you will choose depends on the features you want to obtain. The average cost of monthly web hosting is $5. You can purchase a web host from secure platforms like Siteground (which starts at $2.99 per month) and Bluehost ($35.40 in the first year).
Fancy up Your Website
Now, it’s time to design your affiliate marketing website. You want it to look pretty and professional to portray your legitimacy. It will also show how credible your placement is on the web. Aside from the contents, the appeal can sometimes grant you traffic.
What should you build your site with? One answer is WordPress. It will provide you plenty of themes for free, giving you the catbird seat to customize your website attractively. Moreover, you won’t have to grind that much. It’s easier for beginners to design with WordPress.
If you wish to unleash additional aesthetic themes, you can purchase the premium ones. On average, a premium WordPress theme costs $35 only. This is optional for starters.
How much does it cost to build an affiliate website?
Let’s sum it all up:
Domain Name – $10 (one year)
Web Host – $5 (one month)
Theme – $35 (optional)
Although it’s cheap as it may seem, do not expect this is the specific amount of total expenses. You may need to supply extra needs for the following subscriptions and other collateral developments for the website. Additionally, you must consider spending bucks for plug-ins, other features/tools, software, and marketing.
Can I do affiliate marketing with free websites?
There are so many companies that offer free websites for everybody. You can avail free services from some platforms like:
- Wix – Wix grants a free plan for new subscribers. This is a good option for affiliate marketers who are just starting to hustle in the program.
- WordPress – This platform highlights the freedom to personalize your site. A lot of fancy themes can be applied for free.
- Blogspot – Many bloggers start from this. Since it is offered for free, the features, customization, and tools are limited.
Frankly, yes, you can create websites for free. But in reality, no, that isn’t what you are going to acquire in terms of affiliate marketing. Your level of determination is “meh” if you want to start affiliate marketing with free websites.
Your job as an affiliate marketer is to promote products to a massive crowd of targeted audiences. So, what’s the problem with free websites?
DRIVING ENOUGH TRAFFIC
SEO strategy merely helps to drive traffic on free sites. So, if you really want to commit yourself to own a successful affiliate marketing website, you should upgrade to a paid plan as soon as your free plan expires.
These advanced features do things unlike what free websites can offer:
- Custom Domain
- Web Hosting
- Accurate Analytics
- Plug-in Installations
Do affiliate marketers pay taxes?
To know if affiliate marketing is taxable, it would be better to hire and consult an accountant.
In the U.S., once affiliate marketers exceed $600 of income from their affiliate marketing enterprise, they should claim taxes afterward.
Just like any type of income source (salary, sales, commission, etc.), affiliate marketing is taxable. You are only exempted when you earn less than $600 (applicable in the United States only). So, remember that every time you make more than $600 from your affiliate program, file your taxes ahead.
It’s quite complicated to deal with taxes. You would rather not file at all. But what happens when you don’t file taxes?
As we all know, tax evasion is illegal. You would’ve doubled your expenses if the government fines you for the offense done. Or worse: imprisonment.
One way to avoid hefty amounts of tax is by spending your money. You heard it right! Use the earnings you got from affiliate commissions to pay your bills (when you are working from home) and business resources outlays. In this way, you can write off costs.
To perform this method, it is efficient to keep receipts of purchases/payments for validation. The remaining balance from your commissions is still taxable, though. But at least, you already utilized some money free of tax.
To be sure, check your local tax laws if this is legal or not. Once again, get consultations from financial professionals like accountants to clarify things for you.
Is affiliate marketing easy?
There are now studies that can verify that affiliate marketing isn’t as easy as some think. In other terms, it needs a lot of hard work and perseverance.
Many would agree that the application for affiliate programs is not a problem as long as you own traffic-driven websites. But what difficulty lies in the future is competition.
As an affiliate, you should know that this business takes competitiveness in order to achieve lucrative results. There are and there will be more affiliate marketers who would sell the same products as yours. You ought to make a difference and have the upper hand.
And so, here is a brief checklist:
- Do you focus on your niche?
- Do you promote your affiliate offers?
- Do you have an effective advertiser?
- Do you create quality and SEO-friendly content on a regular basis?
- Do you conduct methods to increase more traffic?
- Do you analyze market demands?
Normally when people start affiliate marketing, they should expect fulfillment but more frustration along the way. It really depends on your strategy and capital. The challenge here was to earn money. And it takes multifold steps and endeavors to familiarize the nature of this financial errand.
Having a website is an integral prerequisite to join affiliate programs. This acts as a channel of prospective purchasers. Without it, you will not be qualified to join the program.
Affiliate marketers must finalize their niche to be competent in this business. By driving a sale or fulfilling a condition, affiliates earn a share of the revenue called ‘commission’.
Being familiar with the niche, creating content regularly, and executing marketing techniques are all necessary to be successful in affiliate marketing. Once you have your own website, free features only wouldn’t work. You need to invest with commitment if you really long for favorable results.
In the US, just like any other income source, when affiliate marketers earn more than $600 from the program, they are required to file taxes. It’s also advisable to hire an accountant that will clarify tax laws for you.
The truth is, affiliate marketing isn’t easy. Along the way, it’s unavoidable to encounter ups and downs. If you dedicate yourself to it, this passive income can even route you to financial freedom.