Affiliate marketing is probably one of the most well-known ways between bloggers to make money online. Of course, there many other ways to make money blogging, but today I decided to write about affiliate marketing and how to monetize your blog.
This guide is solely based on my experiences and to share what I learned, what worked and didn't work. Some of these could slightly change based on your niche. Clairebear Blogs is about food, travel, and lifestyle. So if your blog niche is in fashion, home decor, electronics or others, the platforms I am using might not work for you. For example, if your niche is fashion, but here I listed a food network brand. Maybe you shouldn't use that for your blog because it doesn't align with the things you write about. So instead, you could become an affiliate of Like To Know It, the most widely known fashion network. With that said, let's get right into it.
*This post contains affiliate links*
Making money is not easy. Cliche, but it's true. If you are looking for a rich quick scheme, it is not it. It definitely takes time and effort to research about how to make money blogging, your target market, your niche, marketing strategy, affiliate brands, and more.
First thing as I said above is to choose relevant affiliate programs. Find the ones that you feel comfortable promoting. You should never promote something that you don't believe in or you don't really know what kind of product it is. Here's a good example. After knowing that I could make money blogging, I applied and was accepted from a lot of various affiliate networks; I would go in and share it on my blog as an advertisement ignoring the relevancy. The results weren't what I was expecting. It didn't work even if the brand was popular because my audience wasn't looking for those and I was sharing something totally off the topic. Once I shared the relevant content, products, and advertisements, my revenue went up compared to previous ones.
Second, you don't want to bombard your ads or promotion all over your blog. Just think as if you are a visitor. Who would want to read an article or visit a website that is full of promotion content?
Third, when adding the affiliate links into your blog content, you might want to integrate them properly that will go along with the story. For instance, I see a lot of blog posts sharing random products to gain money that doesn't relate to the post. In order to make the affiliate sale, you need to share honest reviews or opinions; no one is going to purchase a product where you talk about Food and all of a sudden link MacBook. It just doesn't make sense. If you are talking food in your blog content, you want to share kitchen tools, restaurants, or spices to generate those sales.
Keep it relevant and consistent. To add, you might want to build trust with your audience before selling anything. Share some valuable content or just chat with them 1 on 1 and share resources.
Let's dive into the affiliate marketing platforms that works.
1. Amazon Associates
Amazon is one of the most trusted brands where we are all familiar with and that is why their affiliate program is successful. As you know, no matter which niche your blog is in, Amazon covers mostly everything so this is where you want to begin. With Amazon, you can generate your own text link, HTML to embed, banners, shopping ads, or even mobile popover. You can choose whichever product you want to promote and create a link. I normally buy a lot of books from Amazon so I tend to promote books.
I really want to recommend this affiliate network since I made a good amount from it. The main reason behind this profit is because they have tons of companies within. It's pretty easy to get accepted and start sharing some useful products or tools you use.
For example, I use Grammarly all the time when I am writing my blog posts. It's a huge turn off for me when I read articles with typos. See what other common blogging mistakes bloggers make. That is why I make sure I get my grammar double checked with Grammarly as I write my posts. It's a free tool, you can download in whichever browser you feel comfortable in as an extension. And yes, Grammarly is a company that is under ShareASale.
Another one is Tailwind. If you read my previous posts, I've been using Tailwind for a while for Pinterest. Pinterest is not just any social media, but a search engine platform. So you might want to start using Tailwind for Pinterest if you want endless traffic for your blog. You can read more about Tailwind in this post along with free 22 productivity tools I have shared.
So start today by searching for the companies in ShareASale that you want to promote. Don't get discouraged just because you see a lot of brands that you never heard of. You can just ignore it, and find the right one. I want to let you know that you will find at least 10 brands that will fit.
This affiliate marketing tool is slightly different from others. Their purpose is to make any normal link into an affiliate link which is interesting. It actually took me some time to figure out how Viglink worked, but it shouldn't be too difficult. They have a tool you can download so whenever you want to link something, you can just click that tool on your browser and Viglink will automatically create an affiliate link for you. It's great because it is SEO friendly which is important for your blog.
4. Google Adsense
Just as Amazon Affiliates, Google Adsense is super popular, not just bloggers, but with any website. You see those banner ads, island ads, or just any ads when you go to a website? Those are most likely generated from Google Adsense. This platform has two ways you can earn money from. You can do based on impressions or based on clicks.
Based on Impressions - depends on page views. For every 1,000 page views you get, you earn a set dollar amount
Based on Clicks - regardless of page views, if a visitor clicks on your Google Adsense ad, you will earn the certain profit of the ad revenue. This can range anywhere from $0.01 to some dollars depending on the quality of the ad.
You can't choose which ad you want to show because it automatically targets that certain person's interests, but that's how it gets interesting. You can figure who is coming to your website or who are staying longer in Google Analytics. Moreover, you might want to understand the metrics in Google Adsense because it might seem like code words if you are not familiar with the platform.
5. Linkshare (Rakuten Marketing)
I actually started to recently utilize this affiliate marketing platform and just like ShareASale, it has a lot of companies and brands. Good news is that a lot of them are huge companies that we hear and see daily. For example, one of the companies is Lyft. Once you get accepted, you can use the pre-made promotion materials, links, or whichever you like to use and share with your audience.
Now, let's go into the brand affiliate. The previous 5 were the affiliate networks that consist small brands within them. Following are just one company and its affiliate program.
If you have worked in marketing field before, you probably might have used this software. A lot of marketing companies, agencies, or even google partnered companies use this one. With SEMrush, you can pretty much be on top of your SEO and competitor game. It's a paid plan but it's so powerful that you might want to use it if you want to be on the top. It literally tracks everything you need to know. SEO, backlinks, organic and paid ranking, competition, keywords, and offers the dashboard for analyzing your website. They also have helpful webinars you can watch. Try searching your website with the widget below and see how your site is performing!
2. Creative Market
I have also mentioned this tool in my previous post. As you can tell from the name, it is where all the creative fonts, designs, templates, graphics, and photos are in. One of the biggest reasons I use this website is because they have unique and well-designed templates and images you can use to create your own. For example, you could use free stock images out there like Shutterstock. However, most of them are already used by other people so you want something better for your blog. The bundles and packages Creative Market offers are not expensive at all and they also have weekly free goods you can download. Unless you are a photographer/designer who can generate own images every single time, this website is perfect and resourceful.
You can earn money by walking. Yes, and it actually works! It's not gonna make you rich, but if you are active, it's free money you can earn. So far I made $15. They give you $1 every day. 1,000 outdoor steps = $1. This doesn't count you walking on the running machine. It only counts if you are outside, outside. You need to put a location on "always" and it's pretty simple.
You basically earn money by doing surveys. You probably have seen posts about this. I have tried and it's recommended by a lot of bloggers out there but it just doesn't work for me. I do not recommend this one. If you are using this and making a good profit, I would love to know how you are earning from these surveys. It's easy. It asks you like simple questions about how old you are, how much income you have, and more but it just takes too much of your valuable time and you only earn few cents.
As you go, you will find the affiliate links being lengthy or just ugly because it shows your affiliate referral ID. To hide and just make everything short, you can use URL shorteners. I normally use Google URL shortener because it saves the links you have shortened; in case you need to use it again next time. There's also bit.ly but I haven't used it before.
You also need to make sure to always disclose in your pages if you are using affiliate links. So for this post, I would say, "this post contains affiliate links." By disclosing, your readers know that you might make a small amount of profit to keep this blog running and it's fair for everyone.
So these 8 affiliate networks and brands are so far the ones I've been making money blogging. I want to let you know that you do works for you. Don't simply promote something just to make money because it won't work.
Aside from making money, I truly love sharing information and useful content with you.
I really hope this helped and thank you for reading! (And no, I am not generating six figures solely from affiliate marketing.) Feel free to add any advices you might have in the comment section below!
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I am a Houston based blogger who loves trying new dishes, traveling beautiful destinations, capturing moments, and more! Blogging gives me a chance to share and talk all about these moments with you.
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