Affiliate Marketing For Beginners

Affiliate marketing can give you all the financial freedom you want, but it’s not easy, and it’s not going to happen overnight.

If you’re not willing to put in the work then you may as well stop reading right now.

A big part of creating the life you want to live is financial independence. Notice how I don’t say ‘wealth’ or put a figure on that financial income you need in order to be free.

All I’m saying is that you want to achieve financial freedom.

This could mean $1000 a month if you’re young and single and live in a place like Thailand or Mexico. It could mean $10 000 a month if you’re married with kids.

Today I’m going to tell you everything I know about a method that you can start using today to create your financial freedom, and it’s called affiliate marketing.

What Is Affiliate Marketing

Financial Freedom

Affiliate marketing means that you promote other people’s products on the internet and get commissions for any sales you make.

The Benefits:

  • You don’t need to create any promotional products.
  • You don’t have to deal with customer support.
  • All you need to do is connect the buyer with the seller and take your cut.
  • Commissions on products are often as high as 75% of the sale.

The Downside:

  • Many markets are very competitive.
  • It can take a lot of work to make money as an affiliate (but it doesn’t have to).

How To Start Affiliate Marketing

Contrary to what you may think, you don’t need much technical experience to be able to make money with affiliate marketing. You don’t need a diploma or degree, and you don’t even need to be considered smart to do this. All you need is to be interested and to not give up.

It helps if you know how to make a site or set up a blog, but those are things you can learn along the way.

The most important thing is that you must understand the concept of selling. You can’t just choose a product and try to push it on everyone that you meet.

What you need to do is find a person who needs something, and sell them something that will solve their problem or desire.

Think about real life for a second, if you try to sell someone a cheap poncho in a shopping mall when it’s dry, you won’t make many sales (if any). But…if you come prepared when an unexpected rainstorm hits an open-air baseball stadium during a popular game, you can sell hundreds of those cheap ponchos for triple their price.

Give people what they need or want and they will eagerly buy from you. That is the principle behind making great sales.

Affiliate Marketing Techniques

Article Marketing (Free)

This method means that you write articles to promote your product.

First you do your keyword research, meaning that you choose a topic and niche that gets a decent amount of monthly searches in Google. (I’m not going to tell you how to do keyword research but Copyblogger did a cool tutorial here).

Once you have chosen you niche and keyword, you need to find an appropriate product on a site like Clickbank (more about finding products to promote further down in the post).

Then you will write an article (usually 400-750 words) with your chosen keyword in the title and spread throughout the content. You add your affiliate link at the bottom of the article and submit your writing to a special article directory like Ezine or Goarticles.

Rise and repeat. The more articles you write targeting different keywords and different niches, the higher your chance of one of your articles hitting a top ranking and getting a lot of people to read it and buy through your affiliate link.

Article marketing can work, but it’s a heck of a lot of work and if you hate writing or hate writing about products/topics you don’t care about, then this is not a method for you. On the other had, if you can write 2-5 articles every day, then that’s 60+ a month. Do this for a couple of months and you will have built up quite an arsenal of affiliate links and promotion material.

Building Mini-Sites (Small Investment)

Another way of making money as an affiliate is by building small 2-6 page mini-sites that promote your affiliate link. My buddy Glen wrote a detailed guide about how to make mini-sites called Cloud Living (which has sold over 1000 copies to date).

The idea is that you buy a domain and create your site with a few pages of content and links to the product you are promoting. Once you have your site then you just need to drive traffic to it (get people to visit your site).

This can either be done by purchasing traffic or ads from other sites, by writing articles (as mentioned above) and link to your mini-sites or by doing proper SEO (Search Engine Optimization) by building enough backlinks (so that you get a top ranking in Google and get free, targeted traffic every day).

Building a mini-site requires that you purchase a domain and web-hosting. Then you would also need knowledge of how to create a web-page or how you can install and modify WordPress (a popular blogging platform).

I personally created a bunch of affiliate sites this way. Some of them made a few hundred dollars a month and others barely made $50 a year.

If you have some skill, you can build a mini-site and get it making $100 a month. That is like 4 sales for most products, maybe 2 sales if you promote something more expensive.

If you do basic math and you convert at 1%, that means you need 100 visitors for every sale.
4 Sales a month means you need 400 visitors.
400 Visitors means roughly 14 visits a day.
So theoretically to make $100 a month from a mini-site all you need is to build a site and send 14 people to that site a day. (Of course the more targeted your visitors, the more likely it is that they will buy. Someone who is looking for dog collars will not be interested in buying golf clubs for example).

A site making $100 a month can easily be sold for $1200. (12 times monthly revenue)

So, if you know what you are doing and have a system that can allow you to make sites that make $100 a month pretty easily, you can do that and sell them for 12 months income. How cool is that?

You could also just keep building sites and eventually get 20 making $100 a month, but that is not as easy as it sounds. Sites need attention or they lose their rankings and traffic, and thus their sales. That is why it is easier to focus on 1-2 sites at a time instead of trying to work on 20 sites at once.

If you try to focus on 20 sites at the same time, I can tell you now that you will lose focus, get burnt out or just can’t keep up with them. Don’t try it.

Blogging (Big Time Investment)

I briefly want to mention using a blog to make money from affiliate marketing. Don’t do this unless you have a lot of time and a lot of patience.

It takes a huge amount of effort to build a blog to a sizable audience ( took a year to get to 2000 subscribed readers).

2000 readers may sound like a lot, but the truth is that only 0.1% – 4% of your audience buys what you recommend to them (depending on how good your relationship with your readers is and how relevant your product is to their needs and desires).

That means that of 2000 readers only 2-80 people will buy something. If I make $20 per sale, then I could make $1600 or I could make $40 per affiliate link that I promote on my blog. ($1600 would be sweet but it’s pretty unrealistic in most cases).

To sum up, blogging can definitely make you money from affiliate marketing, but it takes an incredible amount of time and effort. Count on 18 months and a heck of a lot of writing and networking before you make good money from blogging and affiliate marketing.

Finding Products To Promote

Pretty much anything that you can think of has an affiliate program.

You can promote books, movies and gadgets from Amazon.

You can promote information products and courses from Clickbank.

You can even promote my Upgrade Reality ebook here.

The best way is to first find a niche and keyword, and then search for a relevant product that you can promote. A quick Google search with “YOUR NICHE + affiliate program” will give you plenty to work with.

*TIP* – always promote a product that provides value and helps your prospect solve their problem or desire. If you sell junk to people, you are not making this world a better place.

Affiliate marketing is something that everyone can do. Even if you just free up one hour a day and spend it promoting your links, then you can build up a nice income of a few hundred dollars or a few thousand dollars a month.

It will take work and effort. Nothing happens overnight. But affiliate marketing could just help you create your own financial independence.

The Affiliate Marketing For Beginners Course

I wrote this post to give you as much of an understanding as possible about the concept of affiliate marketing.

Unfortunately I cannot write enough words here to guide you step by step through the entire process of how to start making money as an affiliate.

The Good News:

My good friend Corbett Bar created an excellent course about affiliate marketing.

Corbett used to work in a corporate job but decided to quit and pursue his own projects. He built up his online business in just 18 months and is making $xx xxx per month from online. The majority of his income comes from affiliate marketing, which is why I recommend learning from him. He knows what he is doing and is not some scammy internet marketer like the majority of the “Make Money Online” crowd.

Corbett spent months developing an affiliate marketing course for beginners. It teaches you all the fundamentals and gives step by step instructions and tutorials that you can follow and use to start making money by affiliate marketing.

If you are interested in learning the basics and fundamentals about affiliate marketing, I highly recommend Corbett’s Affiliate Marketing For Beginners Course. (Click Here)

I wish you good luck with your affiliate marketing journey!

  • Jon

    “If you sell junk to people, you are not making this world a better place.”

    I like how you took something that new potential affiliate marketers may find trivial (selling anything to make a buck) and turned it on itself.

    It does matter. Selling junk hurts your reputation. It stings when you buy junk. It creates a chasm between buyers and online merchants. It breeds distrust.

    Why do you think social media and transparency is so huge now? Because we want the truth. We want to feel connected. We want to stop being “stung” in our personal and business/consumer lives.

    Thanks for the insight…

    • Diggy

      Hello Jon!

      As a newbie I also set up the occasional site promoting something just to make a sale. However, it’s not a good practice and it’s really worth learning how to market properly so you can sell products that will help others and not just take their money and leave them as helpless as before the time.

      What’s your experience with affiliate marketing?

  • Joshua Noerr

    Good stuff Diggy. I do affiliate marketing, which I keep separated for the most part from my personal blog, and I love that you told people there is work involved.

    If someone tells you there is no work, and money just pours in, they are lying to you. Cheers my friend.

    • Diggy

      Hey Joshua!

      Yeah man, besides this blog I have spent many hours affiliate marketing and trying to make money with mini-sites with little success. I’ve made a couple thousand dollars over the last year, but nothing life-changing. It’s way not as easy as it sounds, and personally I think that there are better business models out there.

      Thanks for stopping by!

      • Oryx

        I’m curious. You are promoting Affiliate Marketing in this blog post but then share that you don’t think it’s actually a very profitable venture. Sounds a bit discouraging for someone new at it.

        • Diggy –

          Hi Oryx,
          maybe it’s not so clear, but affiliate marketing is DEFINITELY VERY PROFITABLE. I know guys making upwards of $10k per month from it.

          What I’m saying is that it’s not easy to get to that $10k a month level, it’ll take lots of time and hard work, but that’s the same with everything in life.
          You can get to your first couple of sales within a few weeks though, and I really recommend Corbett’s Affiliate Marketing for Beginners Course

  • Tristan

    This is a great intro to affiliate marketing. I’ve focused in the past on creating my own info products to sell, but I recently bought a new domain to optimize for SEO and affiliate marketing (after reading Glen’s blog). It should make for an interesting case study!

    Thanks again!

    • Diggy

      Hey Tristan!

      Welcome to Upgradereality:) Thanks for leaving a comment!

      I definitely think that creating your own products is more profitable in the long run, but it takes a lot of time and effort. For affiliate marketing you can make good money with a list or with a site with top rankings.

      I say your own product is better because if it’s a really good product you will get hundreds of affiliates to promote it for you, thus getting a list of hundreds of buyers and thus making an absolute killing on your next launch with your next product:)

      Good luck with your site! Let me know how it goes!

  • Parker Lee

    Hey Diggy,

    Good stuff bro, I think that for a year, 2000 people is no easy feat. I have no doubt with how you treat others that your site will take off ;-)


    • Diggy

      Hey Parker!

      Thanks buddy, it ain’t easy indeed, but it’s definitely worth it. Being able to reach so many people and possibly make a huge positive difference to their situation is something I really enjoy doing, and I can’t wait to be able to reach even more people!

      I hope you’re doing well and your projects are taking off too!