Authored by Anna Faustino
Want to know how I afford to travel the world full time?
Thanks to affiliate marketing on my travel blog, I can go anywhere, at any time and still have a steady income no matter my destination.
After implementing affiliate marketing on our travel blog, Adventure in You and creating a strategy where it works around the clock (so that we don’t have to), we actively earn five figures each month passively, allowing us to make money on the go from anywhere in the world.
My partner Tom and I have now been on the road for the past five years, fully supported by our travel blog. In fact, we make more now than we did as a school principal and an engineer…
While we have multiple income streams on our blog, the bulk of the money we earn online is through affiliate marketing, which pads our pockets while providing continuous value to our audience, all while we circle the globe.
So today we’ll talk about the basics of affiliate marketing, some of the best affiliate programs for bloggers, and how this monetization strategy can become your bread and butter, no matter what kind of blog you have.
Affiliate Marketing: How to Make Money From Anywhere in the World
What is Affiliate Marketing
While a lot of people think blogging is dead, the truth is, more and more people are earning and making money from their blogs. One of the most popular ways for bloggers to monetize their websites is through Affiliate Marketing.
This method involves three parties: a brand or company, the affiliate (that’s you, the blogger), and the reader.
The brand or company will have a product or service that they’d like promoted so they have affiliates (or bloggers) place trackable links in their content. When a reader clicks a trackable link and makes a purchase through the brand or company, the affiliate receives a commission or a portion of the sale.
The reason affiliate marketing works so well in the blogging world is because everyone benefits from it. The brand or company gets new traffic and sales, readers get access to products or services they may not have found otherwise, and the affiliate gets some money in their pocket.
Talk about a win-win-win situation!
Today, there are affiliate programs for just about everything under the sun. From flights, car rentals, hotel stays and resort packages to gear, art supplies, beauty products, clothing and more, you can find an affiliate program in pretty much every category known to man.
This makes affiliate marketing even more appealing to bloggers, who are able to find different affiliate programs that fit with their niches. Affiliate marketing is without a doubt one of the best ways for bloggers to make money, while providing value to their audience at the same time.
How to Make Money With Affiliate Marketing
Making money with affiliate marketing is more than just putting links into your content and hoping that people will click on them.
To truly earn an income, you need to be strategic with your approach to affiliate marketing to really maximize your earnings.
Here’s how you can do so:
Join Programs Relevant to Your Niche
To make money with affiliate marketing, it’s essential that you join programs relevant to your niche. Doing this enables you to recommend products that are a natural fit for your blog content, rather than an irrelevant eye sore that no one will have interest in.
Relevant programs also ensure that your audience can find what they’re looking for. If you’re a food blogger, it makes more sense to have a meal kit affiliate program linked rather than a flight or hotel deal.
Important Things to Consider include:
First thing’s first… how much money is a brand or company willing to pay you, the affiliate?
Generally, companies offer a percentage of the sale, so if someone purchases a product that you’ve recommended for $100 and the commission rate from the company is 3%, you’ll get $3 as the affiliate.
When searching for affiliate programs, take note of the commission rates offered as they vary greatly from program to program.
This is how long your trackable link stays active on someone’s computer after they click on it (even if they exit the page).
Some affiliate programs have cookies that only last a few hours while other programs may have cookies that last an entire month.
It’s important to pay attention to cookie lengths because the longer the cookie lasts, the greater chance you stand to earn money from it!
Every affiliate program will have different payout details in terms of a minimum amount of money that needs to be earned before being paid, and where the money is paid out to.
Some affiliate programs offer direct deposit, while others only payout with third party services like PayPal. You’ll find that some affiliate programs won’t send out any money until you reach a minimum of, say, $30 in commission, while others have different minimums requirements.
Create High Quality Content & Place Links
When you’ve joined relevant programs and found products that you’d like to recommend, the best way to move forward is by writing high quality content and then placing the links.
It’s useless to write fluff articles jam packed with affiliate links… Rather, it’s way more effective to create content that your readers will actually want to read so that they can come across your affiliate links naturally.
Understand User Intent
You should also be mindful of what kind of articles you place your affiliate links in. A huge part of this comes from understanding user intent. This is something we teach extensively in our blogging course, the Blogging Fast Lane.
Are readers looking to be inspired? If so, they’re unlikely to click on affiliate links since they’re not in a buying mindset.
However, if your readers are looking for product options, reviews and recommendations, they already have purchasing on their mind, making it way more effective to include affiliate links in these sorts of articles.
Understanding user intent and creating content surrounding it has the potential to skyrocket your affiliate income. Create specific affiliate articles where you walk readers through different product options and the pros and cons of each.
Don’t try to stuff affiliate links where they don’t belong … this will stand in your way of making money with affiliate marketing!
Finally, making money with affiliate programs requires patience. Besides the fact that most affiliate programs payout on a monthly basis, you’ll need some patience to actually generate sales.
Affiliate marketing is not something that happens overnight. It’s unlikely that you’ll place links in your content and wake up with $500 in your bank account.
Rather, affiliate marketing is a process that takes time to develop and smooth out. It’ll take a little while to build trust with your readers and fall into the groove of finding where affiliate links fit the best.
Tips to Make Money With Affiliate Marketing
When it comes to making money with affiliate marketing, here are my top tips for making a meaningful impact on your readers and earning a decent income at the same time.
Pick Products Your Readers Will Love
More than anything, you’ll want to promote products that your readers will actually love. This ensures that you’ll make sales instead of taking a shot in the dark.
When you pick products that your readers will genuinely enjoy, you can show that you really care about your audience and understand what they’re interested in. They’ll realize this and will be more inclined to trust your recommendations and ultimately make a purchase through your link.
Don’t throw in affiliate links to random products and services. Instead, take time to curate a collection of products that will be useful and meaningful to your audience.
Last but not least, when it comes to affiliate marketing, my top tip for making money is to be honest. I’d never recommend a product or service that I wouldn’t use myself because I genuinely care about my readers and want them to trust my suggestions.
Always be upfront about the product or service you’re recommending and give honest reasons why you’re endorsing it. If there are any downsides to the product or service, it’s important to mention those as well, so that readers don’t feel blindsided when they come across them down the road.
Being honest is one of the best ways to build trust and credibility with your readers and believe me when I say that more trust ultimately equals more money.
Ready to Get Started?
So are you ready to get started with affiliate marketing on your own blog? Remember, the affiliate programs that are listed in this article are just a tiny drop in a massive bucket.
There are affiliate programs for everything so if you want to make money on your blog, start by researching brands or companies you love and applying to their affiliate programs. From there, you can get the ball rolling on the content side of things.
No matter what, always remember that the key to success with affiliate marketing is building trust with your readers. If they trust what you have to say and your recommendations, you’ll see a tremendous increase in your affiliate income.