Blogs are a useful gateway to affiliate marketing with the potential to achieve excellent organic search engine rankings.
The blogger boasts a responsive audience that trusts their opinion when they recommend a product or service. That audience will be more likely to click on a link to the seller’s page. This is a simple and efficient way to take direct advantage of your content. By simply spreading the word about a sponsored product or article, bloggers are rewarded with sales conversions and increased site traffic.
Let’s take a closer look to understand how affiliate marketing can be right for you and your blogging and / or social media business.
First thing: What is affiliate marketing?
Affiliate marketing is about recommending specific products or services to an audience, with the aim of generating sales and getting a commission from the transaction. The four participants in this process are:
- the affiliate website
- the affiliate network
- the promoter
- the consumer
How does it work?
Affiliate marketing works by sharing the product marketing workload between different parties. 81 brands and 84% of % of editors work with affiliate marketing, including blogs. By taking advantage of a blogger’s existing audience and the know-how of brand owners, creating commercial content around a product or service is simple.
Also, since the workload is split, each participant is entitled to a share of the profit (or commission). The three main parties involved are the product vendor / creator, the blogger / affiliate and, of course, the consumers.
1. Seller and creator of products.
The seller can take many forms, but essentially it is the part that needs the marketing of a product. The role is basically the same, whether for the creator, the commercially, the individual entrepreneur or the large company. By pushing a product or service to market, the seller or product creator contributes to the range of products that affiliates can choose to represent.
2. The affiliate
It is a single person or sometimes a company that creates commercial content related to a product or service. The affiliate works to convince consumers of the value and benefits of a product by highlighting it in an appealing way. If successful, the consumer will click on the link and purchase the product, which will then generate a portion of the profit for the affiliate.
A huge advantage of affiliate marketing is the presence of a niche audience for which the affiliate usually chooses products in line with the interests of that audience. The connections between the content and the recommended articles not only improve the personal brand, but also ensure that the public is prepared to click on promotions or products.
3. The consumer.
Consumers are becoming increasingly aware of the power of their purchases, thanks to the fact that affiliate marketing is increasingly well known. For influencers and bloggers with loyal followers, these often actively shop through affiliate links to show their support or brand loyalty.
When a consumer buys a recommended product, the profits are split between the seller and the affiliate. Some affiliates are totally transparent with their audience and clearly indicate that they receive a commission from the sales they generate. It is often possible that the consumer is not aware that he is participating in the affiliate marketing process.
There are usually no extra costs if the consumer is aware of buying within an affiliate context or not. The affiliate commission is instead included in the sale price. The consumer will receive the product in the absence of affiliate marketing.
How can you make a profit?
Affiliate marketing is becoming known as a no-cost source of revenue and for creating content without having to go through the difficulties of developing a product yourself. However, although affiliate marketing can be a quick source of income, it is important to first understand how to actually make money from the affiliate process.
How can a blogger make money from clicking a link on a page and buying someone else? First, consumers don’t need to actually buy something for the affiliate to get a commission. There are several ways in which the affiliate’s results are evaluated and rewarded.
Pay per sale.
This is the most typical affiliate marketing context. In this mode, the seller / creator pays the affiliate a profit percentage after the consumer has followed the promoter’s links and bought the product. In short, a sale must be made before the affiliate receives a profit.
Pay per lead.
This system is somewhat less common, perhaps due to its less direct structure. Pay per lead means that the affiliate receives a payment based on the conversion of the lead from their site. In this situation, consumers are required to complete a specific action on the merchant’s site, rather than just clicking and purchasing a product. In this case, customers may be required to sign up for a newsletter or download a particular program or file.
Pay per click.
Instead of guiding a consumer to purchase a specific product on a shopping platform like Amazon, pay per click rewards affiliates for directing consumers to their brand site. The affiliate must produce content that is interesting enough to induce the consumer to open the seller’s site, thus increasing their web traffic.
Market potential: Affiliate marketing in Italy and Europe
Europe is a highly segmented market with a large variety of languages and currencies, so it’s important to remember that the affiliate network you choose has a solid base in the regional markets you want to focus on. If you have concerns or are evaluating multiple markets, choose an affiliate program with a solid foundation and international reach.
The consumer products that bloggers aim for are usually in the area of utensils, books, toys and household items such as make-up. How to reinstate your amazon account, Amazon boasts the largest affiliate network in this market. Its popularity in Europe and Italy can certainly be attributed to the great variety of products available. Affiliates can promote any item sold on the platform.
Affiliate commission analysis
Affiliate commission table
Many affiliate marketing programs use a commission scheme. A great example is Amazon’s current model. It uses fixed commissions for certain product categories. The program is still evolving, but here are some examples of how it works at the moment:
- 3.0% for children’s toys
- 4.0% for Amazon tablets and Kindles
- 4.5% for personal care products and babies
- 6.0% for beauty products and musical instruments
- 7.0% for clothing and accessories or Amazon-branded devices, such as TV or Echo
Unless otherwise noted, most Amazon categories offer a 4% commission, with the exception of gift cards or some alcohol brands.
A common parameter for commissions is the commission structure based on volume. The greater the number of products sold through the affiliate link, the higher the amount earned. After you have sold enough products to reach another advertising commission, the next round of sales will allow you to access a new commission rate.
This continues for the various groups of commissions. It is important to remember, however, that some products are not included in this program.
How to get started with affiliate marketing for your blog?
Getting started and finding partners to collaborate with isn’t actually particularly complicated. Think about some products or brands you love. Logically, if you’re a big fan of these products, your audience is likely to be interested in them too.
Follow these 4 simple steps:
- Find some products related to your blog or field of interest. You probably already use some articles or services regularly, why not write a review or talk about it on a public platform?
- Start registering your visitors with the subscriber form. You will stay in touch with your audience when you have a new article or content. Without a notification, your articles may get lost and your reviews won’t reach the target audience.
- Consider using tools like webinars to build new sales and expand your consumer base. Paid partnerships are an excellent way to build recognition in a new audience.
- Once your affiliate marketing has started to perform, it can be a good idea to grow your sales by using pay-per-click advertising.
Another way to integrate your affiliate marketing into your online presence is the use of social media. Rather than relying on search results to drive visitors to your content and, as a result, your affiliate links, you share the links directly on platforms like Facebook and YouTube. However, it’s important to stay up to date with the social sharing guidelines, as networks like Pinterest don’t allow affiliate links.
Find affiliate partners
The easiest way to connect with products or resellers you would like to partner with is to go to the Amazon page and register as an Amazon affiliate. Also, you can do a quick search online for the “(brand) affiliate program” to find other ways to partner with retailers.
- After registering for the affiliate program, you just need to:
- Find your favorite products on Amazon, copy their links from the toolbar into a spreadsheet.
- Review your existing content. Identify where it makes sense to place a product, then simply add the link
Once your sales have reached € 10, you can choose to be paid by bank transfer or by Amazon gift card.
Are you looking for inspiration? Look at your industry blogs and find out how they work in the affiliation field. If they are using paid links to other products, you can identify them by the long tail “/ ref…” found at the end of the normal link.
How Affiliate Links Work?
Affiliate links take you to the advertised product; however, information is stored on the browser and device you are using at the same time. These indicate the path that led you to the article page and tell the retailer that you followed the advice of a blogger. Depending on the payment structure, your business on the retailer’s site can technically generate revenue for the blogger.
In short, affiliate links are used to evaluate the source of sales and help the retailer identify which of the customers found their products via bloggers.
Types of Affiliate Links – Which is the Best Choice?
There are several ways to insert links on your blog. The most used method is to simply include the text link in standard blog articles. If you are writing an article about a product or service that you want to promote, include links in each mention of the product. It is also important to note that reseller sites may have different cookie lifetimes. Some resellers grant sales credit 30 to 90 days from the click.
Other ways of including text links include newsletters. Once you’ve created a list of subscribers to email updates, you can include affiliate links within your newsletters. It is important to establish a regular schedule and not to overdo these emails. It’s pretty easy for subscribers to flag emails as spam when they think they are receiving unnecessary information.
For video content, adding links is easy enough within video descriptions, by adding popups or even text overlays. Video content is a very effective way to talk about a product, as viewers have a better idea of how you interact with the item and can see it in action.
Another popular type of link is the banner ad. Some programs like Amazon’s offer code to insert into the page code. Instead of being placed in the blog post, this link is in the header or footer. This format is best suited for special occasions such as sales on national holidays. Once the viewer clicks on this banner, they go to the Amazon page of this item and you will receive a commission if they buy the item.
If you’re talking about a series of products rather than a single article, it might make sense to include a more generic link. For example, if you link to an Amazon page with a product range listing, insert the “Affiliate Site Stripe” in your text. This is an exclusive page that lists all your personalized recommendations.
How to create affiliate links?
The most direct way to create a link is to go to the product page, click on the URL and copy the link at the end of the product key. Add your affiliate ID to the URL.
In practice, the result will be as follows: www.amazon.co.uk/gp/product/1234567/your-affiliate-ID.
Now you just need to copy this link and insert it as a text link in your content. Always double check that the link works once the article is published.
If you are working with a banner link, the HTML code provided by the affiliate is easily inserted using the HTML editor of your blogging platform.
For affiliates working with Amazon, there are 3 specific ways to integrate affiliate links into your content:
- SiteStripe: This toolbar appears to all Amazon affiliates within the Amazon store page. Create and select the HTML of text links, product images or directly from the Amazon product page. You can now share your links directly without having to visit the Affiliate Center.
- Widget: Shows sections such as “My Favorites” or even a search bar that allows visitors to browse directly on Amazon. Plus you’ll get a commission for all eligible orders, so just find the widget that fits your page and paste it into your layout.
It is important to note that Google and other search engines prefer you to include a “no follow” tag in affiliate links. Otherwise, this could lead to misleading rankings in search results, as paid reports can impact organic results.
What is link tracking?
Being a performance-based context, affiliate marketing relies on sales efficiency and web traffic that can be attributed to each party. All site activities, such as sales, click-through and other conversions are tracked through the use of specific software. This way the retailer can evaluate which affiliate generated the sale and which one needs some improvement.
There is a wide variety of tracking software on the market, but some affiliate networks use their own programs. Amazon is one example. Just like with software, the styles of tracing methods also often vary.
- The cookiesono probably the most popular method of tracking and known for affiliate networks. By saving a cookie on the browser and on the computer, the sales sites can identify the origins of the consumer and if they have visited the page previously. As long as the cookie remains active, any purchases made by the consumer during this period will be attributed to the affiliate.
- Fingerprinting is less common. By creating a digital signature from the terminal device, information about the operating system, language and other details can be used to identify visitors to the page. This saved signature also helps identify users when they revisit the page with the same browser and device.
If you have a blog and an audience, you have a ready consumer base. Integrating affiliate marketing into your business is an inexpensive way to integrate into e-commerce. With our ultimate guide to affiliate marketing, you now have all the tools you need to start this transition.
Those who feel ready, but aren’t sure which platform they’re using, the Amazon Affiliate Program is simple to use and effective in converting audiences to consumers. If you keep working within the niche and outline an affiliate marketing strategy, you can turn your audience into buyers.