Affiliate marketing is basically an extension of the traditional marketing promotion technique adapted to the Internet’s virtual marketplace where businesses sell products and services online to clients. To date, one of the most successful and effective affiliate marketing programs is the one employed by Amazon – their affiliate program has generated a great source of revenue for the company and their affiliates.
In an affiliate marketing program, a merchant (or company) grants permission to sub-merchants (affiliates) to promote their products or services; in return the affiliate gets a percentage of each sale generated through their efforts (the website links). The affiliate is responsible for sending targeted visitors to a vendor to buy the product, which in turn generates the sales from which they get commissions. This is one of the primary reasons webmasters affiliate their sites with complimentary products and services.
How then does a would-be sub-merchant (affiliate) profit from affiliate marketing?
Although there is no guarantee for success if you engage in the affiliate marketing online business, there are a number of fundamental marketing principles that you need to observe and follow in order to earn your commissions.
1. Customize your website content to compliment the affiliate products and services you market. You stand to gain more commissions by promoting goods and services if what you sell and promote is complimented by your website’s content. In this manner, you get targeted traffic who are more likely to respond positively and purchase what you offer instead of simply putting a banner or text link that is totally unrelated to your content.
Hypothetically, if you are searching for Pomeranians and visit a website with the relevant information and saw a banner for Hummer vehicle customization kit, it is doubtful you would even be interested to click on the banner, right?
2. Generally, niche websites do better compared to all-purpose sites when it comes to generating affiliate income streams because of their related content. A visitor visits a niche website for a one specific reason (the site’s content), therefore he or she is more likely to be interested in the complimentary products and services related with the purpose of their visit. Hit-to-sale conversion ratios are considerably higher on websites that affiliate themselves with complimentary products and services.
3. Make sure that you embed your affiliate links directly to your website content. Embedding affiliate links directly into your web content guarantees higher response rates, which can definitely result in substantial affiliate income.
4. Always use redirects when placing affiliate links in your content. You can easily do this by creating a redirect file, which contains your affiliate link, making sure that the page opens in a new browser window. This also provides protection to your links against affiliate hi-jacking to ensure that you are properly credited for your promotional efforts. Redirect scripts are readily available on Internet script sites.
To put it briefly, in order to be one step ahead in the affiliate marketing program, you should customize your website to fit; make sure to find complimentary products and services that you can promote; integrate your affiliate links directly into your web content and always use redirect scripts to protect your affiliate links from hijackers.
Simple? Yes, but neglecting to observe the simple and fundamental marketing techniques more often leads to failure instead of success and a steady stream of extra income!