Affiliate marketing is one way to earn money from your blog. And for me, it’s one of my favorites!
What exactly is affiliate marketing? It’s an agreement between the advertiser’s, who want to promote their goods or services, and you, the owner of your online website.
YOU become the affiliate that promotes the advertiser’s product or service through a link or banner ad placed on your website. This link is known as an affiliate link.
If someone makes a purchase after they clicked on an affiliate link. The advertiser’s website keeps track of the dollar amounts purchased and then the “owner/you” of the tracking code will receive a commission for referring the sale. This action is all part of an affiliate program.
Affiliate marketing is not a “get rich quick” scheme as some might lead you to believe. But, it is a low-cost, high-profit industry that can provide a nice source of income.
- Low Cost Business Idea + Low Cost Investment
Affiliate marketing is a pretty easy industry to join. All you have to do is become an affiliate of brands/niches that align with your blog/blog posts. Simply sign up and you’re ready to start.
- Site Speed
Display advertising does a ding on your site performance (this means it takes a long time to load and Google doesn’t like that), but affiliate marketing is just a link and it loads really quickly.
- Recurring, Passive Income
A blog post with affiliate marketing has the potential to be recurring and live on forever – especially if it’s evergreen content. And you can always bring people back to that post (by displaying the post in a sidebar, at the bottom of a post with ‘other posts you might like’ or a new blog post linking back to that post).
When you have sponsored content, it’s a one-time deal. But a post with affiliate marketing can generate recurring, passive income.
It’s a win for you and a win for your reader, if you’re doing things right by providing answers!
The more answers that you can provide to people, the more helpful you can be to people, the more potential income you can create. People are online looking for answers and if you can help people and provide answers, it’s a win/win. You create an income and they get an answer to their question.
- You Don’t Control Affiliate Marketing Programs
Since you don’t own affiliate marketing programs, you are entirely dependent on your merchant’s rules and conditions. But remember, you also get to choose who you want to be an affiliate with!
- Lower Margins
It depends on what you blog about, but most of my readers (yes, that would be you) promote lower margin related products on an on-going basis; things like food related products, small accessory décor and/or fashion items. Blogs that promote insurance, investments, cars, etc. carry a higher affiliate marketing income.
- You Could Lose Trust
If you’re just promoting every kind of affiliate marketing related product out there, pretty soon people can see through that. They see that you’re not providing answers, you’re just trying to create an income and you can lose trust because of that. Note: This doesn’t happen always, but can if it’s not done right.
- You’re Encouraging People To Leave Your Site
By using affiliate marketing links in your blog post, you’re encouraging people to click on your site and leave it.
I hope that after reading my affiliate marketing pros and cons, you have a better and deeper understanding of affiliate marketing.
Even though affiliate marketing is one of the top 3 ways that I generate income from my blog, you might decide that it’s not an income generating strategy you want for your own site. That’s the beauty of having a blog… you get to decide what’s best for you!