Okay, you’ve set up your blog and created your branding. Now you are ready to start earning money but you don’t know what to do next. Maybe you’ve tried a few things through the Amazon Affiliates Program, but you aren’t earning any commission as of yet, not even a few cents. It takes time to build up how much you can really make through the program, but if you aren’t getting anything, you’re doing something wrong. Let’s take a look at what you need to do to start seeing monetary results from your attempt at affiliate marketing.
Making Relevant Connections
Let’s start at the top and work backwards. If people are going to follow your advice in your blog reviews and posts, they need to trust you. Think about when you’re researching a product of interest. Do you stop with one person’s perspective, or do you seek out several? Then, once you’ve discovered that a particular source seems to always have the best information, don’t you turn to that resource first? Why would anyone else shop any differently?
In order to get the trust of your readers, you have to give good recommendations and accurate information that really helps. To get those readers, you need information that is relevant to their needs. If you have a blog about landscaping, you don’t want to promote the latest CD released by a popular artist. People who subscribe to or check your posts frequently want information about relevant products, such as ‘how to’s’ and reviews of yard equipment.
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Of course, you can write the relevant content all day long, but you need to know how to get people to come see it. That requires learning a little about good SEO (search engine optimization) practices. That means using tactics that allow people searching for information you provide to see you in the results of their search on Google and other search engines.
Intent, Purpose, and Persuasion
The idea behind the Amazon Affiliate program is to persuade people to go to Amazon and buy products. We’ve already covered the fact that getting them to take your advice requires trust, which is built through honesty in your reviews and promotions. But there are two things to keep in mind here. First, all you need to do is get them to Amazon. The giants at Amazon can do the selling. It’s what they’re good at.
Now, let’s consider how that’s done. Go back to the example of landscaping. Some ‘how-to’ articles are great information for do-it-yourself-ers. Unfortunately, there’s not a lot of opportunity for selling products that way. If you want to take this approach, you should at least consider reviewing certain tools or materials needed for the ‘how-to’ project.
That way, you’re promoting something that Amazon sells which is still relevant to your topic. For example, The Sleep Judge reviews sleeper sofas here so that people looking to purchase a hideaway bed can get the information they need, search through reviews, and then click through to Amazon to make their purchase.
For best results, consider talking about something like the best equipment for someone starting their own landscaping business, or the essential tools for a new homeowner. These are people in the market to make a purchase, so they are more likely to convert for you, which adds up to a bigger bottom line for you.
Use Consumer Information
What will your readers trust even more than they trust you? They’ll trust the word of other consumers. Knowing that a product you’re recommending is on a best seller list can work positively in your favor for getting the reader to consider purchasing that product – or another from the top of the list. And either way, you get commission if it turns into a sale on Amazon. You might even choose to post best seller lists for particular items from time to time.
You should also consider quoting from user reviews and even having your readers write reviews for you. Ask for comments with reviews on products they would recommend for a certain job. For example, on the landscaping site, you could ask readers to review fertilizers and post links to them on Amazon. This will get them to interact with each other and give you more links that other readers may follow and then purchase.
Don’t just link to sales pages, though. Information is king, and that means you want to include links to further information for your readers to review. If you give them every opportunity to learn about the product – and even products that work in conjunction with that product – they are more likely to convert.
Arranging Your Content
There are a number of special widgets you can post on the side of your blog and whatnot, but these are not the moneymakers. If you want to have a successful blog and earn money as an Amazon Affiliate, you have to use contextual promotion. That means talking about the product and linking to it within the blog post.
Also, try to find promotional deals. Everyone wants to save a few bucks, so when there are specials (which most products on Amazon have frequently), you can wrap an entire post around the value of the product and why a reader should buy it now, while it’s ‘on sale.’ And along with that vein, you should add a ‘buy it now’ button to your post.
This takes them straight to purchasing, without the added need to navigate the Amazon site. While sometimes giving the reader an opportunity to browse can be of greater value, if they are ready to make the purchase, forcing them to go through additional steps could cause them to lose interest before completing the transaction. A ‘buy it now’ button assures they can get straight to business.
Another way to get down and dirty is to focus on any upcoming special occasion or holiday. In February, you have Valentine’s Day, so look for anything that might be relevant as a gift for someone who loves the type of products you promote. You may want to show some couple poses for a photoshoot, as it’s going to attract readers. Christmas is huge, so make sure you’re on the ball during the winter holidays. And when a new product is about to be released, stay on top of that by following Amazon’s advanced announcements. Post about pre-orders that Amazon is running and get people in the door early.
Always track your conversions, and when you find a trend, make use of it. Whether it’s a particular type of post that does well or a particular type of product, keeping on that train can really assist you in building the money you’re earning, so watch for patterns and trends. Also, you can promote a lot of small ticket items to keep momentum, but make sure you’re on top of big ticket items, since that’s where the money is.
No, working at becoming a successful Amazon Affiliate isn’t a piece of cake, and you won’t earn money for nothing. But with enough practice and a good eye for patterns, your job will get easier, your audience will get larger, and your bottom line will become much more substantial. In the end, you may even consider publishing multiple blogs that can really engage customers and keep your business growing.