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14 tips to make money by affiliate marketing

1. Niche Selection Is Crucial I’ll get to the actual methods I use on my websites in the next tips, but the first thing I want to say is ...

1. Niche Selection Is Crucial

I’ll get to the actual methods I use on my websites in the next tips, but the first thing I want to say is that the niche you choose is the absolute most important decision you can make.
I love to target physical product focused niches and keywords
It’s easiest to make money using Amazon’s affiliate program if the people coming to your website are looking for a specific product that your website discusses. It’s more difficult to use a website like my blog here and make money linking to physical products because the people coming here are looking for advice on how to earn money online – not what iPod speakers they should buy.

2. Link To Products Inside Your Content

Roughly half of my Amazon income comes from basic text links posted inside the content body area of a blog post or page.
Example: Check out this cool helicopter. I’ve been covering these RC helicopters for months and I’ve never seen this one priced for only $25.98 well off it’s $129.95 list price.
Simple text links in the content of an article are the most effective way to get web visitors to click. People trust the body of the content on a page more so than any other area of the website and I know this because the tracking data I’ve collected.

3. Make Product Images Clickable Affiliate Links:


The second best thing I’ve found next to a simple text link is to use images of the product you’re talking about and make them clickable like this cool usb missile launcher:
Roughly 15% of my total Amazon income has come from simply making all of the product images on my websites clickable affiliate links.

4. Product Review Articles Convert The Best

Doing a quality product review for a product directly related to your niche is a very easy way to garner higher click thru rates and increased sales, but only if your review is higher quality.
Ideally you contact the manufacturer’s marketing team or PR agency and get them to send you a demo unit of the product to review, but this takes a lot of effort and may not be worth it on a smaller traffic site (at first).
You want to convince the reader to investigate their purchase options by the time they finish reading an article, which is why I’ll always include links to all of the products mentioned in a review at the end of the article. That way it’s an easy transition from learning about the product during your review and then at the end it’s time to make a purchase.

5. Build An Email List

You’ve probably heard this a hundred times by people telling you to build an email list from the blogger and internet marketing crowd, but building an email list is way easier on a physical product oriented website.
Why? People don’t have their guard up when they are researching a physical product to purchase (when compared to other purchase decisions online i.e. digital goods). So what I like to do is offer some type of freebie like a buyers guide or some type of information that provides more details about the products they’re researching.
On the flip side, I’d love for you to join my email list for this blog but I have to be a little more convincing by showing you that I’m a credible resource first. (Already convinced? Sign up here ;D)
For my newsletter provider I use Aweber and highly recommend them. Overall I could attribute at least five to ten percent of my total income due to my email listsbecause I like to focus on promoting products heavily to my lists during the holidays which leads into my next tip.

6. Write Sales And Promos During The Holidays

I typically made between $500 and $1,000 a day every day during Black Friday Week, Cyber Monday and Cyber Week. It is lower during other holidays like Mother’s Day, Father’s Day, Presidents Day, Valentines Day etc. but you can still promote various sales during these holidays as well. I target every holiday because Amazon creates an actual dedicated sales page every time one of these holidays come around. The deals shared on these pages are generally really good too.
So what I’ll do is put together an article of all the top products that are on sale in my niche using the tips I’ve shared earlier like linking as many times as possible, making the product image clickable and then sending out an email to my list etc. to get even more conversions.
Stats From A “Cyber Monday (My Niche) Discounts” Post Last Year

(Some of that traffic pop is also attributed to the day I mail out to my email lists though)
For the structure of these articles I like to target a frequently searched keyword such as “Cyber Monday (My Niche) Discounts” etc. because I know people search for “Cyber Monday” and “Black Friday” millions of times each year but they also search a longer form version like “Cyber Monday (My Niche) Discounts” as evidenced by the above traffic graph from one of my Amazon sites

7. Sell Large Quantities Of Inexpensive Products To Boost Your Payout On High Priced Products

One thing I do is have websites that are set up in lower competition niches where the items typically aren’t as expensive and where it’s easier to sell these products in larger quantities ($50 or less). Then I have other niche sites that sell more expensive products at much higher prices ($XXX – $X,XXX) that are sold less frequently. So this way I get to use the increased quantity of sales from these lower priced product websites to help me get up into higher payout brackets so instead of making 6% on that high end item I’ll get 8% instead.

8. Create A Product Comparison Grid

Creating a product comparison grid for all of the products within your niche and allowing people to sort by various features is a great way to get some additional sales. I’ve used this tactic on several of my websites and the product comparison page alone can add an additional 5% to 10% income increase for a website.
If you do it manually you’ll need to use this WordPress plugin called WP Table Reloaded and what I do is include various columns for information about the product and in the final column I use a buy now button that people can click to see more info about the product.

9. Publish A Recurring Deals Post

If you want to find a way to be able to mention products that are on sale more frequently on your website one of the easiest ways I’ve done that in the past is to just do a weekly deals post. So what I’ll do is publish a post every week with the best deals for my niche and then incorporate all of the previous tactics I’ve discussed above to link to the products on Amazon.com. Depending on how often you publish articles you could do it more or less frequently (I’ve seen some websites do these style of articles every day).

10. Publish A Monthly Bestseller List

Amazon has a bestseller page found simply at Amazon.com/bestsellers and so one thing I’ve done on my site is publish a bestsellers list and simply mention the currently trending bestsellers. Generally speaking the cream rises to the top so if you write an article talking about the bestselling products those are likely to be the best products your visitors are looking to buy anyway.
Just go to Amazon.com/bestsellers and look for your respective niche category. I shoot for top 5 or top 10 products.

11. Use Native Shopping Ads Over Static Banner Ads

Update: I used to recommend carousel style Amazon ads, but they don’t exist anymore. When I used them they converted about 3 times better than static style Amazon banner ads. I suggest using Native Shopping Ads instead which is essentially a replacement to the carousel style ads but allows for greater flexibility. You can display products by recommendation from the content, by search or with other options. Here is what the a Native Shopping Ad looks like for the keyword search “Chris Guthrie” Amazon displays the Kindle books I’ve written:

You can create the Amazon Native Shopping Ads inside your Amazon Associates account here and you’re able to manually add products or just display bestselling products from a specific category.

12. Don’t Bother Creating An Amazon Astore

When I created a store page and used the Amazon Astore tool to “build my own store” I found it converted terribly. Less than 1% of my total income came from Amazon Astore pages before I stopped using them. If you’re not familiar with Astore’s just take my word for it when I say they suck.
I know people like to shop, but sometimes I believe they’d rather just find a resource that tells them what the best deal is instead. Whatever the reason, the tracking data I used to track my Amazon Astore’s showed that they routinely underperformed.

13. Add affiliate links to your most popular posts

For some of you, you would have really popular posts on your website.
If it’s appropriate, add affiliate links to your most popular posts.
If it’s not appropriate to do so in the context of that post, try to link to your top-converting blog posts that have affiliate links. (aka those tutorial posts I talked about in the previous point).
It doesn’t have to be complex.
If could be as simple as a sentence like, “Do you want to learn how to make green smoothies? Check out the top 10 juicers I recommend in this post!”

14. Use A Website Layout That Improves Conversions

I’ve been using Amazon’s affiliate program heavily for a little over two years now and the one thing I found through constant testing is that the layout of your website matters when it comes to how well it converts casual visitors into affiliate sales.
Armed with this knowledge you’d think that people would spend more time testing their theme or website layout to determine the optimal way to make money from their website right? Well, I still see some of the worst converting themes around and that’s why I actually paid for a theme to be created specifically for these physical product focused websites I had been building.
Azon Theme Created:
I spent around $2,000 on the creation and subsequent modifications of Azon Theme. It’s basically a theme with a ton of different options that has evolved based on my own testing and the feedback from members of my Niche Profit Course(all customers get Azon Theme and the upgrades for free). You can watch a brief video which covers some of the Azon Theme options here and if you want to buy it there the price is
$97 just $10 but you can even get it for free when you sign up for web hosting using my link (See complete details over at Niche Profit Course)

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