This article will discuss the first step towards getting started in your affiliate career.
Note: This article is for newbies looking to get started in the affiliate business. More articles to follow in future for professionals.
You see the most important thing that will help you to get a commission is the promotion of your unique URL that will bring visitors to the merchants website and sales that happen from the visitors you bring. Agreed there are various methods to help you advertise that URL to and bring visitors directly to the merchants site, like buying advertising online. But the best way to do is to tell a person the benefits of the product before sending them to the merchants website.
Let me give you an example. You are interested in buying a good mobile phone. You then start asking your friends. Some of them say to go for SamSung as its value for money phone. You have an uncle who is an electronics engineer specialized in mobile phones. When you ask him he recommends Apple iPhone for whatever reasons. Who will you listen to? Your friends or your uncle who is an expert in mobile technology? Of course you will listen to your uncle and head for an Apple shop in your area.
This is human nature. We listen to experts, we value their opinion and feedback – the rest we just ignore. Online world is no different. When you tell your visitors the benefits of a product and why you should buy it over any other product like an expert, its most likely they will listen to you, and buy that product.
Compare this against buying advertising and sending traffic directly to the products page of the merchants’ site. What do you think will work well? People whom you have told about the product – its benefits and features or the ones who were just looking for a similar product or were just researching? The answer is obvious – people who already know about the product and have come there because you have told them in details about the benefits are more likely to buy than the ones who just came there researching.
Agreed that direct linking may also work, but when you are starting online its better you go through the tried and tested methods of online marketing. Why re-invent the wheel when everything has been done before. This method works and works 99% of the time. Why take a risk and difficult route for your online ventures?
Moreover you will have to spend a lot of money to buy advertising for your affiliate URL. Major search engines may not even approve your ads. Even if they do the cost per click is very high for almost all the verticals. It is not 2000, it is 2014 and cost per click has gone through the roof. It will be very hard if not impossible to be profitable. If you have thousands of dollars which you are willing to risk you are better off taking that route.
I will not discuss any more about the direct buying methods as this article is written for newbie’s looking to be affiliates with not much money.
Back to the topic. How will you tell people about the product you are trying to promote? You will need a website to tell them. Without a website how can you write in details about the product?
You can get free websites, but I highly recommend you get your own. Why? Because you will never own a free website. If a company offers you a free website – they will have full right over anything you do in the website. Your content, photos, and any other work will legally be owned by them. Therefore I am not referring you to any providers of free website. The choice is yours.
Your years of hard work may go down the drain if the company where you had you free website closes business or if they delete the website by chance. There is little you can do in the above scenarios. All your traffic will vanish overnight. Therefore I highly recommend buying your own domain and website. Don’t worry they do not cost a fortune.
To own a website you will need two things:
1. A domain name, and
2. A web host to host your website.
Lets discuss in details.
A domain name is name of your website. For example Google.com is a domain for the search engine company Google Inc. In other words Google is actually a company that owns Google.com. If you need your place online you will need a website where people can come to do research or read about what you have to say. And that website needs a name that is called a domain name.
There are many places where you can buy domains. Domain names costs anywhere from $10 for one year. Never pay more than $12 for a domain for one year registration. While buying the domain please fill the correct credentials like your name, street address etc as it is required by law.
Note: Try to get an interesting domain name that people will remember. If you buy something like thisismydomainwhereyougetxxx.com, no one will remember. Since now-a-days its extremely difficult to get a short and interesting domain, you can combine three words to get a good domain. Do not exceed 35 characters to get a domain as most search engines do not allow more than 35 characters to be written when you buy paid advertising. (You don’t know the future, you may need to buy advertising to expand your business.)
Try to use words that you are buying the domain for. For example if you want to get into the dating business – let one of the words be date. For example GetYourDate.com. If you have interest in selling mobiles online – you can get something like AllAboutMobiles.com etc. I hope you get the point. Consider yourself very lucky if you get a domain of your choice as there are people who buy domains just to flip them and make millions. But that is entirely different topic.
Please get .com only as Top Level Domain. Top Level is the domain’s extension. For example .com. .net, .org etc – they are all domain extensions. Its hard for people to remember other extensions. If by chance you buy a .net domain and it gets very popular you will find that people going to the website with .com which you may not own. Your valuable traffic will go to someone else’s website for free. For example you get abc.net, you will find people typing abc.com and going to that website. A highly targeted visitor lost. You do not want to be in that situation.
In my next post I will explain in details about web hosting and what you must do to make sure you get a good web host and why it is very important for your business.