For a lot of years I’ve been making a lot of people a lot of money getting their sites to rank on the front page of Google. At my last place of employment I was able to dip my toe in the water of affiliate marketing and I have to say, it is working out OK so far.
What is affiliate marketing? It is when a third party sets up a website or markets for a product that is not theirs but they have an agreement with the maker to get a percentage of each sale they initiate. I started off down this path because at my previous employer I had a lot of ideas for marketing and they were a really small company so they couldn’t take advantage of everyone. So I asked if they passed on an idea if I could pick it up in my own time. They agreed because why not? It just means potentially more sales for them.
Well, it worked out really well. I used one of the domains they passed on and set up a website. Because the domain name is so close to a government site related to the industry it started ranking right away and has been on or near the front page of Google for over 2 years now. Off of one site, that serves one state, a product that is a one off sale with no chance for reselling I’ve been able to supplement my income and not be pressed to go back to work for someone else making them the bulk of the money. Not that I wouldn’t jump on the right offer but that is what this does, it allows me to choose rather than just take the next offer that comes along.
It helps to have the inside track on something. A product you know is really good and if more people knew about it would be big. You know someone that is launching something before it hits the market. Something like that where you know about the industry. If you know someone then you contact them and work out an affiliate agreement. All industries offer different compensation. Find out what that industry pays so you get fairly compensated and work from there.
If you don’t have any contacts in business then it is best to stick with what you know. Do you have hobbies? Areas of interest you know a lot about? Then that is your area. One of the things you need to do to be successful is to promote, meaning talk about your product to people interested or to places that might help you promote it.
We will use widgets as an example. You’ve been into widgets for years. You’ve seen other people make a ton of money in the industry and you want to get in on it. So the first thing you need to do is find an audience. For me being a web developer that means finding a URL or domain to put a site up. Here is the key, most people buy their business name and set up on that. What I do is I buy the product name because that is what people are searching for. So I buy www.job-widget.com because that is really what people are looking for. Set up a website and the find places and ways to promote it.
You have to actually read the TOS here when signing up. I know most of the time we just check the box but there can be advertising restrictions. Like they won’t let you advertise on platforms like Google or Bing where you bid on keywords because you’d be competing against them and driving up the cost. So you need to be informed.
Then to talk it up. You share the site on social media. You put good content that is SEO friendly on the site to get it ranking. With the domain being a big feature if you have a good balance of content on the page or pages, it will rank pretty quick for a minute. The search engines will give you a shot on the front page right away. It is how you preform during that time that tells if you’ll stay there. If there are a lot of bounces under 5 seconds you’re not going to stay there.
That is why SEO is so important. You want people to land on a page looking for that product or service. Not land at Mr. Pool, pool sales when looking for a pool cleaning service. Often a business owner feels compelled to get everything they do in front of a prospective client hoping for a bigger sale. But what that really does is give the buyer overload and they move on to a more simple buying experience. So people looking for job-widgets will likely find that site and when they land there they see job-widgets right in their face. Not Job2 and Job3 and Job4 widgets. Just job-widgets, exactly what they are looking for.
The reason is you want get them right into the buying process as quick and easy as possible. Once in the cart you can then offer upgrades of alternatives but you want it clean, simple and easy to start buying that job-widget.