That's an effective headline, isn't? What can I say, online friends - the topic of the day kind of requires as much attention as it can get. Because affiliate marketing is hard enough. But to explain how to make affiliate sales when your traffic is slim to none is even harder.
Quite frankly, making money as an affiliate is awesome, there is no doubt about that.
However, the road to get there when your blog barely gets any visitors is tricky to say at least.
Still, it's not impossible!
This post may contain affiliate links. See my disclosure here.
*Article last updated March 2019*
First and foremost, you won't be able to score any affiliate sales unless you have an in-depth understanding of what affiliate marketing is.
By definition, affiliate marketing is a process where you recommend someone else's products and/or services to an audience.
When a person completes a purchase through your unique affiliate link, you'll receive a commission.
Above all, this is one of the most popular ways to make money online. Simply because it's a win-win-win situation for all the parties involved.
Firstly, for the vendors - the more people are reached while the affiliates are spreading the word, the better chance there is for a sale.
Secondly, for the customers - they get to enjoy their desired product with no extra charge on the price they're paying.
Meaning, buying through affiliate doesn't affect the product's price for the client.
Lastly, for you (the affiliate) - you'll earn commissions for your marketing efforts. Likewise, there is no need to create products or services yourself.
In other words, your line of work can best be described as being the middleman.
Let's face it, even if your website is brand new, the thought of instant monetization is hard to ignore.
After all, it's only natural, right?
I mean, the majority of people who dive into blogging are driven by its earning possibility on one level or another. Chances are, if you have a couple of posts published, you're probably already trying to monetize them.
Now, how is that working out for you?
If your affiliate efforts are pretty much in vain so far, you shouldn't be surprised.
As a rule of a thumb, your blogging income is closely connected to the condition of your traffic. The more people are reading your content, the better chance you'll have to earn affiliate commissions.
However, your blog is still new, correct? Subsequently, the data you're seeing in your Google Analytics just makes you wanna cry.
Trust me, I know the feeling!
At the same time, though, I was able to make my first affiliate sales when my blog was getting around 120 page views per month.
And in a couple of minutes, you'll find out how to score the same results as well!
Before I show you how to make affiliate sales with barely any traffic, I need to make sure that we'll cover all the basics.
Hopefully, you won't mind that tiny detour - every day I'm receiving questions from readers who are interested in affiliate marketing but have no idea how and where to start with it.
So, back to the topic:
By all means, there is more than one way to work as an affiliate.
Basically, the most popular one is by using Social Media as your playground. Meaning, you can join affiliate programs, grab your affiliate links, and post them on your social profiles.
Still, sometimes the most popular way is not necessarily the best way.
For instance, let's say you have 1,000 followers on Twitter. If that many people notice your tweet, you may be able to make a sale or two.
Not bad, but it won't set your bank account on fire either.
At the end of the day, reaching 1,000 people is good. But do you know what's even better?
Reaching 3.2 billion.
Because that's how many people spend time online every single day from all over the world. And the best way to try to get in touch with them is to create your own website.
Makes sense, doesn't?
Why you should limit your reach to thousands of people when you can reach millions?
Recommended: Need Help To Start a Successful Business Online? Read My Free Guide To Walk You Through The Process
So far, we've established the fact that building your own blog is the best option to secure tons of affiliate sales.
That being said, let me walk you through the steps I took that brought me affiliate commissions in my 3rd month of blogging.
Here, the first thing you'll have to choose is your blogging platform. Meaning, to have a hosted or a self-hosted blog.
Considering that you're building a business, don't even think to look at the free blogging platforms. Their options for monetization are pretty much non-existing.
Therefore, start your blog on a self-hosted platform. Likewise, go for the best web hosting providers out there.
Right now, I believe the front runner is BigScoots. The company offers top-notch hosting services that are more than affordable.
Or you can hold on for a second and let me introduce to a little-known deal that will provide you with a website, hosting, and blogging education all for free.
Personally, that's the deal that I'm having for more than a year so far.
As I already said, I'm not paying for hosting even though my website is self-hosted. Plus, I own my blog but I got it for free. On top of all that, I was taught how to become a blogger and an affiliate marketer again, for free.
If this is the first time you're hearing about that possibility, then you must have never heard about Wealthy Affiliate.
This online teaching platform will provide you with more than you can imagine. Including professional blogging/affiliate marketing education, 2 websites, free hosting, tech support, warm community of 2 million people...
In other words, if you're a complete beginner who has no idea how to make money blogging, this is the place to be.
And you can have that with your credit card intact, anyone can join Wealthy Affiliate for free.
Truth to be told, my strategy works best if you have even more content.
But in case you're not there yet, 5 posts will do as well.
To clarify, by quality content I mean articles that are devoted completely to your audience. Subsequently, those posts have to help your readers to solve a problem or to provide the information they're looking for.
Not to forget, to borrow my formula on how to make affiliate sales, your Google Analytics should be already running and showing your data.
OK then! Let's assume that all this is already done.
Time to move to the most important part of this article!
Quite frankly, I doubt that what I'm about to show you is the best-kept secret in the world.
Moreover, there is no magic here, but a simple strategy on how to use your data.
As I already said, Google Analytics will play a very important role in your work as an affiliate marketer.
Even if you're familiar with how this tool works, you may not be using it to the best of your advantage.
And if you know where to look, Google Analytics has the power to show you the money!
By all means, we're not going to use every single statistic your Analytics is showing you. On the contrary, you'll need to focus mainly on a couple of sections.
First and foremost, you have to know where your traffic is coming from.
So, go to Acquisition - All Traffic - Source/Medium
Make no mistake, that first step is crucial!
In order to learn how to make affiliate sales, you need to know who your audience is and where you can find it first.
Actually, this fact is a no-brainer. Then again, you'll be surprised how many bloggers are ignoring it!
Now, in my case, the majority of my traffic is coming from Pinterest - carefully calculated decision on my part.
Personally, I've been doing SEO and proper keywords research from day one in order to rank on Google. But I knew that it will take a lot of time until the biggest search engine starts to show me some love.
And that's not the situation with Pinterest!
So far, you know where your visitors are coming from. Subsequently, you have to learn what they're interested in the most.
Again, follow me: Acquisition - Social - Landing Pages
Basically, I consider this to be the most important data you'll ever need from Google Analytics.
Because those landing pages will tell you everything you have to know about your visitors.
Simply said, your most visited landing pages are the articles that are the most popular among your audience.
Firstly, have a good look at the numbers of Sessions, Page views, and Avg. Session Duration. Especially at the last section!
Secondly, take notes about the posts with the longest duration. Meaning, on which articles your readers are spending more time.
They are the ones you need to focus all your attention on!
By all means, what does it tell you if a person is willing to stay for 5, 10, and even 15 minutes on a single post?
Yeah, that's right - you're giving this person everything he/she is looking for!
Personally, my 3 articles with the longest duration are also the ones that brought me my first 3 affiliates sales.
Most importantly, at the time when my stats from Google Analytics looked like that:
And then I knew - these are the kind of posts that convert the best with my audience.
Naturally, this should be your next step:
Once you know what kind of content your readers are looking for the most, the job becomes much easier, isn't?
For instance, one of my top referring landing pages happens to be my Beginners Guide On Affiliate Marketing.
Obviously, my audience needs help with starting affiliate marketing the right way.
Well, that's what they're going to get!
Currently, you're reading about how to make affiliate sales, aren't you?
Considering affiliate marketing is such a broad topic, the possibilities for new, fresh content are countless.
So, all that you need to do is to apply the same strategy for your own website!
Related: How To Write Blog Posts That Sell
Quite frankly, I found out that certain articles perform better than others.
In my opinion, there're 3 types of blog posts that never fail to convert in affiliate sales.
At least, most of the time they don't!
Because they're all about helping your reader to solve his problem. And providing him with the tools or products to do that in the process.
Speaking from my own experience, there's always something that you'll need to learn no matter what you're trying to achieve.
And that's where the good old tutorial comes in!
For instance, let's say that your website is in the food niche. Subsequently, your latest article is about a chicken dish that your audience can prepare in no time.
That being said, don't just tell your readers that the recipe is fast to complete.
On the contrary, walk them step-by-step on how to do it in a timely matter. Make a video if you will...
You get the picture, don't you?
Truth to be told, a product review is probably the best type of content that converts in affiliate sales.
Most of all because reading a review is the last step of any reader's purchasing cycle - just before buying the product.
Meaning, that reader already knows which product he is interested to purchase. Therefore, all that your review needs to achieve is to convince that reader the product will solve his problem.
Above all, it's a smart decision to check what's the word on your desired product before buying it.
Personally, I never spend money on anything before I explore its reviews first. As I'm sure, neither are you!
Just like the reviews, the lists will never disappoint you as an affiliate marketer.
By all means, why should you settle for a single affiliate sale when you can make a few of them?
For example, let's say that you're writing about microwave ovens.
Certainly, your article can be wrapped around one type of microwave. But isn't so much better if it takes a look at 10 of them?
The more products you review, the more chances you'll have to see affiliate sales.
Simple as that!
Now, we all know that affiliate marketing is an awesome source of passive income.
However, it's not the easiest thing in the world to master the art of affiliate sales.
And everything in today's article is just a small fraction of a huge universe.
With that being said, hard work, time, and patience will certainly get you where you would like to be as an affiliate marketer.
So, do you have your own tricks on how to make affiliate sales that you would like to share? Or maybe some questions on this topic?
If you drop them in the comments section, I'll be glad to have a word with you!
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