While affiliate marketing can be used to successfully monetize a site, there are risks involved that marketers need to be aware of. The one area I see consistently under-acknowledged is the ever-increasing danger of fraud. Affiliate marketing has its own unique range of fraud challenges. Cookie stuffing is a great example. That’s where the affiliate, unbeknownst to the advertiser, attaches cookies from multiple advertisers to every visitor — whether that customer clicked on an ad or not. If the shopper later makes a transaction at any of those sites, the affiliate can attempt to claim a commission.
Although it differs from spyware, adware often uses the same methods and technologies. Merchants initially were uninformed about adware, what impact it had, and how it could damage their brands. Affiliate marketers became aware of the issue much more quickly, especially because they noticed that adware often overwrites tracking cookies, thus resulting in a decline of commissions. Affiliates not employing adware felt that it was stealing commission from them. Adware often has no valuable purpose and rarely provides any useful content to the user, who is typically unaware that such software is installed on his/her computer.
But I would go even a step further and say it's not just traffic you need, but traffic you can CONVERT into subscribers and sales. After all, if you had a storefront, would it make you rich if you had a flood of people staring in your window? No, it wouldn't. You need prospects to come in and look around and start building a relationship with them, and then eventually they will start buying from you.
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It helps you find the right decision makers and their emails without paying for a LinkedIn premium account or spending hours on using a plethora of different email finding tools. You just simply chuck in a company name, domain name or person’s name and the tool finds the right people. You can use HeadReach to find professionals in your field to do a roundup post, for content promotion or to find the right people in charge of a popular outlet. For example, you can search for all editors at TechCrunch, Forbes and Entrepreneur magazine via a single search.
When you join an Affiliate program and choose the products that you want to sell, sellers provide you with a unique affiliate code that you can use to refer traffic to the target site. Most affiliate programs will offer ready made text links, banners and other forms of creative copies whereby you only have to copy the code and place it on your website to start referring traffic. When interested visitors click on these links from your site they get redirected to the product site and if they purchase a product or subscribe to a service you as the referrer make a commission.
Promote products that are stepping stones to products you will create in the future. This is a bit more advanced, but is a great way to think ahead. Amy Porterfield suggests thinking about the first thing your followers will need in order to get started with what you provide. For example, I teach people how to blog, so the first thing they need to start a blog is hosting. That’s why I am an affiliate for hosting.
For a slightly different take on the subject and figuring out how to get targeted traffic onto your promoted links, you must have a look at Affiliate Marketing: Instant Traffic to Affiliate Links. A quick look at the reviews will help you decide if this is the exact course you are looking for. Sometimes the right approach is what is required to make a campaign work, this one might just work for you.

Affiliate marketing overlaps with other Internet marketing methods to some degree, because affiliates often use regular advertising methods. Those methods include organic search engine optimization (SEO), paid search engine marketing (PPC – Pay Per Click), e-mail marketing, content marketing, and (in some sense) display advertising. On the other hand, affiliates sometimes use less orthodox techniques, such as publishing reviews of products or services offered by a partner.[citation needed]


I found the course extremely helpful especially as i am a beginner. Lisa is excellent at explaining which is important when you are starting out. She has made me understand the importance of finding the right niche and that to me is where most of us go wrong. I am extremely grateful for a course like this and would like to take this opportunity to thank you Lisa for creating a course that helps others! – Michelle
A ton of players in affiliate marketing are just middlemen, getting in front of audiences through SEO or PPC or email marketing and shooting them off to the storefront as quickly as possible. I’d wager that most of them never even touch or interact with products they review. Even really huge players in the game don’t really add much value, and this is where you can stand out from the competition and perhaps even develop your own dedicated audience. Try to provide insights that can’t be garnered by the end consumer alone, such as hands-on product review videos (great for gadgets, tech and fashion), custom pictures and images that aren’t available elsewhere and use-cases about how products fit into your daily life. All this is a lot of additional work but will end up with a final product that outshines your competition.
Many affiliate marketers use paid advertising to generate additional traffic to their site and drive more sales. Paid advertising on social media is often a good place to start, as these networks tend to be more affordable.You may also want to consider taking out inexpensive banner ads on small niche sites. Depending on your niche, Google AdWords could also be a good option to drive some paid traffic to your site.
Rather than letting as many partners into your program as possible, evaluate your partners for quality. You want to ensure their efforts are brand-aligned and delivering the outcomes you want. Focusing on a select group of partners can have a positive impact on the experience your affiliates have and your program’s conversion rate. Having quality partners is much better than managing fraudulent issues with partners on a regular basis.

Digital strategist Dr Dave Chaffey is co-founder and Content Director of marketing publisher and learning platform Smart Insights. Dave is editor of the 100+ templates, ebooks and courses in the digital marketing resource library created by our team of 25+ digital marketing experts. Our resources are used by our Premium members in more than 100 countries to Plan, Manage and Optimize their digital marketing. Free members can access our free sample templates here. Dave is a keynote speaker, trainer and consultant who is author of 5 bestselling books on digital marketing including Digital Marketing Excellence and Digital Marketing: Strategy, Implementation and Practice. To learn about my books, see my personal site Digital marketing books by Dr. Dave Chaffey. In 2004 he was recognised by the Chartered Institute of Marketing as one of 50 marketing ‘gurus’ worldwide who have helped shape the future of marketing. Please connect on LinkedIn to receive updates or ask me a question.

With all of this in mind, you also need to understand that affiliate marketing is not some get-rich-quick system. It’s a business. A real marketing business that will take some time to grow. All of the resources you need in order to succeed are listed above, but don’t expect overnight success. Give it a good 6 to 12 months and about 10 to 15 hours per week working on your business. If you do that, by this time next year, you should be an affiliate marketer yourself, at the very least making a nice secondary income. If not, in a year from now, you’ll be exactly where you are right now. Focus on the long-term and keep going with sustained effort. Of course, I’m always available as well if you ever want to contact me. I never charge a dime. 🙂

In affiliate marketing, you may end up feeling inclined to give better praise for an affiliate than may truly be deserved. This is a huge mistake as it can erode trust with your readers. Instead, don’t be afraid to detail any concerns or misgivings you have with the affiliate product or service. In many cases, drawbacks aren’t necessarily going to be deal breakers. Many readers will appreciate your candor and may be more likely to purchase since they know you’ve given them the full information, rather than half-truths.


Don’t just hope and pray that visitors will buy; setup everything correctly and make it happen! If you think that visitors will click on your affiliate links and buy just because you placed dozens of affiliate links on your website then you are wrong! You need to have a structured plan in place. Affiliate marketing is a business so you will have a much better chance of succeeding if you treat it like one.
Your ultimate goal as an affiliate marketer should be to outsource all the work while you collect a paycheck each month. My website DogFoodInsider.com is 100% outsourced at this point. There is always someone willing to work for you. From writers on Constant-Content.com to programmers on Elance.com to odd jobs on Fiverr.com – the sources you can use for outsourcing is nearly limitless.
There are "gurus" and programs that suggest affiliate marketing is a set-it-and-forget-it system to turn the Internet into a cash machine. While affiliate marketing can be done part-time, it's not automatic. It requires research and a plan. For this home business idea to succeed, you have to know and understand your target market and continue to do things to reach them so they can click on your affiliate links.

Your ultimate goal as an affiliate marketer should be to outsource all the work while you collect a paycheck each month. My website DogFoodInsider.com is 100% outsourced at this point. There is always someone willing to work for you. From writers on Constant-Content.com to programmers on Elance.com to odd jobs on Fiverr.com – the sources you can use for outsourcing is nearly limitless.


John Chow dot Com – John Chow can teach you how to live the Dot Com Lifestyle. Considering his blog went from making nothing to more than $40,000 per month in two years, he knows a thing or two about becoming time, money and location independent through online marketing. Learn about selling the right brand, building authenticity and gaining traffic in this video.

Cookie stuffing involves placing an affiliate tracking cookie on a website visitor's computer without their knowledge, which will then generate revenue for the person doing the cookie stuffing. This not only generates fraudulent affiliate sales but also has the potential to overwrite other affiliates' cookies, essentially stealing their legitimately earned commissions.


One of the pros of affiliate marketing is the low cost. Use a free or “freemium” email marketing tool such as MailChimp to allow you to build an email list and send out newsletters or offers. When looking to understand the quality of your affiliate partners, use a social media monitoring tool like Mention to track what their customers say about them. There are also free surveys or website pop-up tools to understand what kind of content your audience would be interested in. Lastly, you can track and analyze how your affiliate marketing initiatives compare to other types of advertising on your site with tools like Google AdWords.

Finally, pop into your ad account and look at the keyword prices because expensive keywords can also drive up the payout to make the final earnings competitive but still not be necessarily outrageously high. Avoid running campaigns just because of high payouts. Otherwise, surprise factors like the ones outlined above can quickly eat up your expected earnings.

Think of it this way – if you were about to open a restaurant, wouldn’t you do some research before quitting your day job and investing hundreds of thousands of dollars into it? Of course you would! You would research the best location, the best type of food to serve, how much you’ll have to pay employees, where you’ll source ingredients from, what type of tables and furniture to use, the best ovens and equipment for the kitchen, and all sorts of stuff. If you just “wing it” and open a restaurant without doing any research first, you’ll most likely fail. While affiliate marketing can be started part-time and without much capital, the same holds true. If you don’t research and plan, you will fail.

He is the co-founder of Neil Patel Digital. The Wall Street Journal calls him a top influencer on the web, Forbes says he is one of the top 10 marketers, and Entrepreneur Magazine says he created one of the 100 most brilliant companies. Neil is a New York Times bestselling author and was recognized as a top 100 entrepreneur under the age of 30 by President Obama and a top 100 entrepreneur under the age of 35 by the United Nations.
If the above locations do not yield information pertaining to affiliates, it may be the case that there exists a non-public affiliate program. Utilizing one of the common website correlation methods may provide clues about the affiliate network. The most definitive method for finding this information is to contact the website owner directly if a contact method can be located.

What kind of commission do they offer? One-time commissions or recurring commissions? For example, many programs pay you one time for sending a customer. On the other hand, some programs like membership sites or SaaS (software as a service) programs will pay you a commission as long as the person you referred is a paying customer. Recurring commissions are great when you can find them!
A ton of players in affiliate marketing are just middlemen, getting in front of audiences through SEO or PPC or email marketing and shooting them off to the storefront as quickly as possible. I’d wager that most of them never even touch or interact with products they review. Even really huge players in the game don’t really add much value, and this is where you can stand out from the competition and perhaps even develop your own dedicated audience. Try to provide insights that can’t be garnered by the end consumer alone, such as hands-on product review videos (great for gadgets, tech and fashion), custom pictures and images that aren’t available elsewhere and use-cases about how products fit into your daily life. All this is a lot of additional work but will end up with a final product that outshines your competition.
While affiliate marketing can be used to successfully monetize a site, there are risks involved that marketers need to be aware of. The one area I see consistently under-acknowledged is the ever-increasing danger of fraud. Affiliate marketing has its own unique range of fraud challenges. Cookie stuffing is a great example. That’s where the affiliate, unbeknownst to the advertiser, attaches cookies from multiple advertisers to every visitor — whether that customer clicked on an ad or not. If the shopper later makes a transaction at any of those sites, the affiliate can attempt to claim a commission.
Social Mention - Very similar to TalkWalker Alerts, Social Mention is a media listening tool that shows in-depth insights into phrases/discussions on the web. Tracking brand name shows the reach, strength, and passion that users are having with brand names. It also shows sentiment analysis (whether users are referring to your suggested phrases with a positive or negative sentiment. Another cool feature includes what other keywords are used in discussions with your brand. For Smart Insights our top keyword is 'marketing' ...that's always good to know!
Your domain is the address for your website (e.g., www.affilorama.com) so this is the first thing you will need to do when setting up your site. Considering there are millions of websites on the internet, it's possible that the domain name you want may already be taken by someone else. So make sure you have several options in mind. Be sure to read our advice on how to choose a good domain name. 
One of the most sought after and highly recommended course is this one on Guide to Effective Affiliate Marketing Strategies by Kudus Adu. Not only does he focus on create an affiliate marketing strategy, he focuses on best practices to create money pages, tells you how to build your email marketing list and how to profit from it. He clearly asks people looking for ‘get rich quick strategies’ to stay away from the course.
Hi, Nice article. I am not sure about the process though. I can understand, finding a niche. But, when it comes to affiliate programs I get a little lost. Would I be promoting someone else's products? If so, no problem. I know I need to research high end products with gravity, are these products ones in certain stores, or companies, etc.?? If so, do I need to get permissions to be on an affiliate program with that company? Also, if it is products with a company, then how do I offer promotions on their products since they are not mine? Thank you, Nanette Vlahusich
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However, as I stated before, the single best source of highly targeted website traffic is from search engines. For that reason, you will wan to pay particular attention to these training videos covering SEO (search engine optimization). That’s where you’ll learn all about how to rank your website at the top of certain search phrases deliberately. You get to pick and choose what you rank for if you follow those steps.
Creating blog content is a very useful and effective way of consistently building content on a site. When creating blog posts, it's a good idea to do some keyword research to figure out what it is that your audience is interested in and searching for online. Also, be sure to research competitors, forums and social media to narrow down on topics for your blog. 
Its obvious his first language isn’t English but the guy has made an effort to help other people out of his experience. Nunya what you did is bad and you should apologize really. There is power in the words you speak. Putting someone down like that is wrong, like all his effort to put something together was a disaster. I myself found his grammar appropriate and very understandable, I think the person with the problem here isn’t Jafar. Next time if you dont have something better to say, dont comment. If it were to be you in his shoes, am sure you won’t like it either…. Stop the negativity!!
When you promote a product you also promote the person or the company who is behind the product so try to choose wisely. You don’t want your visitors to go and buy a product following your advice then come back unhappy. Do you think that this visitor will come back to your site and take your advice again? Most likely no; this can hurt your credibility in the long run. Usually, websites/company that offer good customer service will have better customer satisfaction so try to stick with promoting their products.
A lot of really awesome tools on this list. A few that I wasn't aware of that I can now add to my arsenal. I've come across a really great tool for anyone that uses a lot of different channels for paid marketing, called Funnel (funnel.io). It eliminates all the tedious time that it takes to aggregate all of your spending data. They currently support integration with more than 400 advertising sources and you can either use their built-in dashboards for analysis or export to a data warehouse, BI tool, or even Google. It's an amazing time saver for anyone who has ever spent an insane amount of time gathering data that seems to be outdated even by the time you've gotten it all together. Might make a nice addition to the list!
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