You’re most likely here because you’re mulling over whether you should start an affiliate marketing business – and really you’re asking yourself, “Is affiliate marketing worth it.”
It’s one of the questions I also asked myself before I started this online business.
My honest opinion after doing affiliate marketing for over 2 years is that it’s not for everyone. To put it in more blunt terms, most people simply aren’t cut out for the work involved to become a successful affiliate marketer. So is affiliate marketing worth it to you?
Let’s further examine this.
- Is Affiliate Marketing Legit
- Is Affiliate Marketing Worth it to Make Money
- How to Start a Successful Affiliate Marketing Business
- Is it Worth Becoming an Affiliate in 2021
- Pro’s of Affiliate Marketing
- Con’s of Affiliate Marketing
- Types of Affiliate Marketing Programs
- Is Affiliate Marketing Worth It? – Final Thoughts
Is Affiliate Marketing Legit
First, let’s get this recurring online question out of the way.
Is affiliate marketing legit?
Yes, it is.
How do I know?
Well, I’ve been getting paid affiliate commissions over the last two years from some of the largest brands in the world.
But you don’t have to just take my word for it. Well known brands and websites such as Amazon, Sephora, Walmart and Nike all have affiliate programs. And that’s just some to name a few.
Recent statistics by Mediakix actually showed that over 80% of brands worldwide use affiliate programs.
There are even successful companies that were built completely off of affiliate commissions, including Groupon.
So, it’s not just a fly by night industry. This is a legit industry that is growing in popularity year after year, and the statistics continue to point to this growth.
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Is Affiliate Marketing Worth it to Make Money
If you ask me, then yes, it’s worth it.
That’s because this business provides me with daily passive income, which equates to freedom of time.
So if I decide not to work one day because I want to take my nephew to the park, then that’s ok. My affiliate marketing business continues to pay me whether I’m working that day or not.
But there is a decent amount of upfront work involved in starting such a business before you can get to the financial rewards.
So to better answer this question for yourself, let’s take a look at the work involved in building a money making affiliate marketing business.
How to Start a Successful Affiliate Marketing Business
Here’s a brief rundown of the work involved in building a profitable affiliate marketing business. Once you know this, then you’ll be able to determine whether affiliate marketing is worth it to you.
1. Work on Having a Positive Mindset
I know this is not a common one you hear often, but it’s an important aspect to affiliate marketing success.
A positive mindset builds a strong mind. A strong mind is essential when it comes to accepting the mishaps and failures you’re bound to experience along this journey.
Building a positive mindset is different for everyone. Some people find that reading motivational books or practicing meditation helps.
Others, such as myself, prefer to do early morning workouts that pump up those confidence building endorphins. Whatever it takes to keep your mind healthy and strong, do that. You’ll need it.
2. Decide on a Niche to Focus On
If you want to see faster results, then the best thing you can do is to decide on a specific niche to focus on.
A niche is simply a way for others to know exactly what you’re all about, and what information you plan to share with them.
For example, my area of focus (or niche) is related to sharing information on making money online with affiliate marketing. These are the readers I typically attract with this blog.
When you are able to zero in on an exact audience to attract, you’ll be able to present them with an affiliate offer that speaks directly to them. This is how you make more affiliate sales, even with a small audience.
3. Choose a Platform to Build Your Online Real Estate
Establishing a proper place where your audience of potential buyers can find you is key. This will become your little corner of the internet, otherwise known as your online real estate.
Similar to having physical real estate, such as a house, the better you’re able to build it, the more valuable your online real estate will become.
Your online real estate can be:
▪ A YouTube Channel
These are some of the more popular forms of online real estate because it involves doing content marketing.
Content marketing is one of the most profitable ways to organically attract your audience to you. You don’t need to spend any money on ads. This means you get to keep more of your affiliate income in your pocket.
4. Create Helpful Content that Gets Found Online
This is where the real work begins, and where most beginner affiliate marketers drop the ball. Hopefully, you’ll know to avoid this pitfall after reading this.
Creating content on your new platform is a lot of work.
It’s more work than I think most people realize at first, especially for someone doing this in addition to having a full-time job.
Let’s say for instance you decide to start a blog. Before you even write one word of your new article, you’ll have to conduct tons of research beforehand.
A lot of this research will be figuring out the internal problems your audience face, as well as the words and phrases they use to describe their problem.
Once you’ve discovered these two very important things, you can begin to write about a solution to their problem. Ideally your affiliate product solves their issue.
Though that’s just the beginning.
Writing a great article doesn't necessarily mean your blog will be successful. You also have to write it in a way that satisfies the Google algorithm, and gets found in Google search results.
But most affiliate marketers skip all this and simply write on whatever comes to mind, or what they believe their audience wants to hear from them.
It’s a backwards approach to starting an affiliate marketing business, and one that will cost you a great deal of lost time if done incorrectly.
There’s also tech skills to consider for designing and maintaining a blog. All of this can become too much of a headache for some, and not worth it to them.
5. Scale Your Business for More Passive Income
Once you’ve laid the initial groundwork, you’ll want to make things easier on yourself by scaling your business with marketing funnels.
Marketing funnels are systems you put in place that sell your affiliate offers, even when you are not online working on your business. It’s an essential piece to truly turning your affiliate marketing business into a passive income machine.
One type of marketing funnel is a sales funnel.
This funnel can identify the specific problem your prospect has, and then suggest a product that can help solve that problem. Essentially, it can take a cold prospect that lands on your online real estate, and turn them into an immediate customer for you.
The best part is that this system can be automated with a landing page software tool.
Creating a sales funnel for your business is not a difficult task to do these days. But someone who has never created one before can find the necessary help they need with a sales funnel training course.
Another type of marketing funnel is an email funnel.
An email funnel serves as a way to build a more intimate connection with you and your audience. This is where you can share your brand story as well as address how you can help them with a specific issue.
You can also email special deals when one of your affiliate programs has a promotion going on. Or, you may want to send bonus offers that will entice your prospect to purchase something from you.
Use any reliable email software tool, along with a proper email marketing sequence to start making more affiliate sales without having to do more work.
Is it Worth Becoming an Affiliate in 2021
Absolutely! While some opportunities may be too late to jump into right now (like Bitcoin! 😅), affiliate marketing is not. There is plenty of opportunity brewing right now and all the statistics point to more affiliate marketing spending in 2021 and beyond.
But if you’re still trying to decide whether affiliate marketing is worth it to you, then here are the pro’s and con’s to starting an affiliate marketing business.
Pro’s of Affiliate Marketing
Why is affiliate marketing a great way to make money online? Let’s take a look.
Little to NO Start-up Cost Needed – Start with $0 Dollars!
Affiliate marketing is one of the few businesses you can start today that doesn’t require you to have money to start.
If you have more time than you have cash, then starting a YouTube channel is one viable way to start for free.
Simply create content, upload it to Youtube, and add your affiliate links in the description section below your video.
When you begin to make money, then you can use it to reinvest back into your business with higher quality video recording equipment.
Affiliate Programs are FREE to Join
Most brands have affiliate programs that are free to join. You can realistically sign up with a program today, and start promoting your affiliate links right away.
Additionally, some affiliate programs offer free training that will help get you on the path to making your first affiliate sale.
Affiliate networks such as Shareasale house a multitude of free affiliate programs that you can check out.
Leverage Well Known Name Brands
Some of the biggest and most well known name brands around the world have affiliate programs today.
Brands such as Amazon, Google, Sephora and Target all offer affiliates a chance to earn money with them.
This brand recognition will help you convert more of your online visitors into paying customers.
No Customer Service Required on Your Part
One of my favorite things about affiliate marketing is that it’s a relatively hands off business when it comes down to it.
As an affiliate, your job is to drive traffic to the affiliate offer you are promoting, and collect commission checks on those customers that purchase.
There is no customer service needed on your part. It is the affiliate program’s responsibility to take care of the customer you just sent to them.
Only a Laptop and Internet Connection is Needed
If you’re one of those people who’s always dreamt of traveling the world while earning a paycheck, then affiliate marketing is for you.
The only thing you need to get started is a laptop and internet connection. So hey, if you want to get on a flight and jetset around the world, then go for it!
With affiliate marketing, you have no boss telling you where to sit to do your work, nor at what time you can go home.
Con’s of Affiliate Marketing
Not everything is hunky dory when it comes to affiliate marketing. Let’s take a look at the not-so fun stuff of this online business model.
Affiliate Programs Can Change Affiliate Terms at Anytime
As an affiliate marketer, you are at the mercy of the affiliate program. So if one day they decide to change the affiliate commission structure to a lesser one, there’s nothing you can do about it.
Even worse, if the affiliate program decides to shut down completely, then it can take with it a huge chunk of your monthly income.
It’s not a pretty scenario, but one that does happen every so often.
Affiliate Tracking Links Are Not Perfect
Most times, there are no issues with affiliate tracking links. Prospects that click on your link and proceed to purchase with your affiliate ID are assigned to you as a conversion.
Though tracking links are not perfect, nor are the platforms that power these links. I recently experienced this for the first time this month, after nearly 2 years of doing affiliate marketing.
One of the affiliate programs I was promoting during their busiest campaign of the year, experienced a tracking link issue. Essentially, the hosting platform of the affiliate tracking links had gone down during this time. Go Figure!
Thankfully, the affiliate program reached out to affiliates to inform us of this. They also worked with us to accurately compensate us for sales we had driven to them during this time.
So all in all, it ended well and I felt perfectly fine with the final results.
High Competition for the Same Affiliate Product
Listen, you’re not going to be the exclusive affiliate for the product you decide to promote. You should expect there to be a healthy amount of competition promoting the same product as you.
Should that be cause for concern?
Not really, but it shouldn’t be overlooked. There are many ways to get clever and outsell your competition. One way in which successful affiliates do this is by offering a free bonus with the affiliate product when ordering through their affiliate link.
This one little trick will do wonders for you when it comes to making more affiliate sales of a high competition affiliate product.
Types of Affiliate Marketing Programs
There are various types of affiliate programs to consider that each offer a different commission structure. Here are just a few to get you started.
Pay Per Lead (PPL) Affiliate Programs
Pay per lead affiliate programs, also referred to as pay-per-action (PPA) programs, will pay you a commission based on a certain conversion. These can be things such as a prospect creating a new account, registering for a free webinar or supplying a phone number.
Recurring Affiliate Programs
Recurring affiliate programs will pay you over and over again for a sale you made one time. Many software subscription services offer this type of payout structure to their affiliates. It’s one of my favorite types of affiliate programs to promote.
High Ticket Affiliate Programs
A high ticket affiliate program can pay you out hundreds or even thousands of dollars for just one sale. These are some of the most coveted affiliate programs to promote, and require more advanced skills in order to make a sale.
Is Affiliate Marketing Worth It? – Final Thoughts
For the right person, starting an affiliate marketing business has the real potential of generating a sizable passive income stream. This online business does require a lot of upfront work, but once you lay the groundwork, it will pay you dividends for years on end. For me, affiliate marketing is worth the effort and the increasing financial rewards have been gratifying to see!
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