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The 7 Basic Steps to Successful Internet Affiliate Marketing

Updated on January 31, 2010

Internet affiliate marketing is exploding as many people look for ways to make money online and work from home. The successful marketer must find a process and follow it relentlessly while repeating it across multiple niches to stay on top of things and continue to make money. The hardest part for someone new to the internet marketing business is learning the ropes and figuring out what needs to be done when. While niche marketing may have some technical hurdles that take time to learn, the basics of it are nearly identical to an offline marketing or sales based business model. In fact the internet affiliate marketer almost always has an advantage over the physical business owner simply because the start-up and maintenance costs of the business are much less.

Now, there are many people who are newly trying their hand at affiliate marketing and making money online who will never succeed. This is likely more than ninety percent of those who try their hand at it. The primary reason for this is simple: there is no get rich quick scheme. You will not make money overnight. You will not earn money in your sleep with only two hours of work per day. If that is your goal, or you think those secrets are revealed here, stop reading now. Find some guru to listen to who will tell you the exact steps to work from home and make money online!

Everyone is into internet affiliate marketing now.
Everyone is into internet affiliate marketing now.

Now that all the lazy losers have left, let's continue. The great thing about the lazy people is they leave plenty of room for the hard workers to make a living. Everyone is so concerned about over-saturation of the business, but I don't believe that's possible. Offline marketing and sales is not over-saturated, and neither will internet affiliate marketing get over-saturated. The simple reason being those lazy people or those who are averse to failure will drop off, and will no longer be competition for the people who spend the hours and burn the midnight oil to build their online business.

The reason you are reading is to learn what the basics are. That is why you are here. I cannot teach you any techniques as I am still learning various ways to do things myself. The basics are absurdly simple, though, and once you have a process mapped out, how you reach the finish line is purely up to you.

The Basic Steps to Success With Internet Affiliate Marketing

  1. Find a product or niche. Sometimes it's one or the other, but I have done it both ways. Let's say, for example, your niche is dog training. You may look around and find a tight niche focused on getting a dog to stop digging. There may be multiple products available, both info products (e-books) and physical products like training videos or electronic training aids. Pick one or two and put together a campaign to promote these. It doesn't really matter which comes first, product or niche, but ultimately you need something to sell or something to promote.
  2. Identify the market for the product. This is going to be who you are selling to. Who wants or needs this product? Obviously in our previous example, the people looking for this type of product or information are dog owners who would like to teach their dog to stop digging. As mentioned there may be multiple options on what to market to them, but a tight focus is better than broad. Do enough market research to know if there is even a chance you will sell anything to these people. People will often pay for information, but you need to make sure what you are offering is something they cannot easily find for free. You also need to make sure that it is even something that people are looking for...which brings us to the next step.
  3. Find keywords to get exposure for your product in the search engines. Keywords are an absolute necessity for any hopeful internet marketer hoping to cash in on a lucrative niche market. I think that I could also speak for some experienced marketers out there who even sometimes make this their step number one. For the newbie starting out, though, it is often easier to start with the product or niche they already know something about or are passionate about. Once you have some campaigns under your belt, then you may start out by finding keywords first.
  4. Produce/ Write content for that keyword or market or product. Depending on how you plan to get traffic to your offer, you may need more or less content. Free traffic also known as organic traffic is one very popular way, but what you don't spend in money will be spent in time writing or otherwise creating content. Remember, there is no free lunch here.
  5. Drive traffic to your content. Article marketing is a well known and respected way to get traffic to your offer. Sometimes, you may opt for paid traffic, but this is not recommended for someone just starting out. After a few successful free campaigns, you may want to dive into the world of PPC (pay per click) to get traffic to your sites and offers, but you should forget about this until you understand the basics.
  6. Get your traffic to act. This may be for them to click on adsense. Yes, many people affiliate with Google adsense and make a lot of money just from those clicks. For anything other than adsense, you should have a "call to action." You shouldn't leave things up to chance. After putting in all the effort from the past steps, you don't want to cross your fingers and hope your visitor is going to do something. Tell them what to do. If you are selling a DVD that shows how to stop a dog from digging, then point it out and tell your visitor they need to click your link to buy it.
  7. Convert your traffic. This is what comes next after you are getting some information in about the traffic your offer is getting. You may need to make tweaks to your campaigns to get better conversions. A conversion is someone going from just clicking on your link to actually making a purchase, so obviously adsense is not "convertable" in this context. Never ask someone to click on your adsense if you intend to continue to have an adsense account. In the stop dog from digging DVD example, perhaps I need to make my landing page with the product offer on it more compelling if I am only getting clicks without actual sales. I could try some common marketing techniques like saying it is a limited time offer or some other fear of loss if they don't purchase. I could make my offer larger on the page. I could change up the ad copy. Any number of things here, that you will want to test, so this is why I recommend a newbie use free traffic methods starting out instead of paying for clicks that do not convert.

The Dumbest Product I've Ever Seen

I'm not sure if this is a real product or not, but it made me lol when I saw this picture.
I'm not sure if this is a real product or not, but it made me lol when I saw this picture.

Well, those are your basic steps to help you develop your process.  One thing I do is develop a spreadsheet for each campaign with a checklist of each of these complete with the keywords I'm using, links to landing pages and affiliate offers, etc.  Practice and perseverance will prevail in your internet marketing efforts, so again, lazy folk forget it.  Just go buy a $200 e-book telling you how to make a money siphon from Google, and leave the rest of us to actually doing what works.

As the gurus like to say: "To your success..."


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