Depends On What, You Ask?
If you haven’t started as an online affiliate marketer, you may not have ANY idea what to do or how to get started. You may not have a good idea of what affiliate marketing is, or if it’s really the way for you to go.
So, let’s take a minute to understand just what affiliate marketing is. Then we’ll answer the question: How do I start in affiliate marketing?
In a nutshell, affiliate marketing is a business model where you, as an affiliate, help customers find the products that they are looking for, and when they buy that product from the company that you are affiliated with, you earn a commission.
It’s different from an online store, or selling on an auction site. As an affiliate marketer, you don’t deal with products directly.
In a nutshell, that’s what it is, so how does it work?
To start, you choose a niche, or an area of interest that you would like to become an expert in. Then you build a website and start to attract customers, usually by blogging.
The majority of affiliate marketers use a blog to market the products for the companies that they have an affiliate agreement with.
Pros of Affiliate Marketing
Here are some of the benefits of affiliate marketing;
- You don’t have to purchase products to sell
- You don’t have to maintain an inventory
- You don’t have to ship the products
- You don’t have to deal with customer complaints
- You don’t have to handle returns and refunds
- You get paid commissions on the products people buy
- Your earning potential is sky high
Are there any Cons?
- You need to become an authority site that is recognized by the search engines, which takes time and effort
- You need to be able to write fairly well
- It takes time to build up a business
- You need to know how to build a website
- You need to be able to insert links, media (photos and videos) into your posts
- There are a lot of tools that you need to master to make your business stand out and attract customers
All the cons listed above can be overcome by learning what to do, and how to do what is necessary to implement what you have learned. With that knowledge, the cons go away.
You can find people online with negative opinions about Wealthy Affiliate. A lot of that negativity is due to the fact that WA is a huge platform with over 1.4 million members. It’s size makes some people think that it’s a get-rich-quick scheme, which it definitely is not.
What you need to succeed is proper training.
Knowledge is power. Knowledge is also money. How do you get that knowledge? You get it the same way you learned all your life. You find the information you need and you learn it, right?
But, it’s not that easy.
There is SO much to learn to be successful, that without focused and directed training, most will give up within a couple of months.
There are lots of places on the web to get that training, and lots of places willing to take your money. How do you know which one to go with? How do you know you’re not getting scammed?
Growing up, you were either home schooled or you attended public school. If your parents were well off, maybe you went to private school. Wherever you went, you were taught the basics that you needed to read well, write well, figure stuff out mathematically, and more.
After we graduated from high school, we had different choices we could make, depending on what our life goals were, and what occupation we were interested in.
Some of us went to college, some maybe went to a trade school. Some of us joined the military. A few of us joined the family business. Whatever we wanted to do, there was learning and training involved.
It’s the same with affiliate marketing.
Affiliate marketing is a business, although it isn’t taught much in college business courses, or at least it wasn’t when I was earning my Bachelor’s in Business Administration.
Most of the training in affiliate marketing is found online, and the vast majority of it is taught by people who are in the business themselves, have learned what works for them, and have written a training course to sell to others. I believe that a lot of these courses are legitimate, but, as with brick and mortar schools and universities, all are not the same.
Some are just better than others.
It’s natural for any of us, if we’re going to invest our money to learn how to start and run a successful affiliate marketing business to want the best training we can afford. Am I right?
It would be nice if we could take a free course or two, to get the feel for the training program before we invest any money in it, wouldn’t it?
Doesn’t that make sense to you? Nobody wants to enter a training program, put a bunch of money down to get the lessons, then find out that it’s not what you were looking for.
I’d say 99% of the affiliate marketing training platforms on the internet want you to buy their course or courses up front, and their sales pitch is geared that way.
I know of only one training platform that lets you join for free, and instead of offering a free course or two, you get TEN free lessons to get you started.
That training platform is called Wealthy Affiliate.You may have heard of it. It’ becoming the industry leader in affiliate marketing training, with well over a million members, all of whom started for free.
Here’s what the free Starter training has to offer:
As you can see, the starter training aims to get you a good start on your affiliate marketing business, and takes you to the point where you can make an informed decision about whether you want to upgrade to premium or not. Most serious entrepreneurs upgrade well before finishing all 10 lessons, but there is no requirement to do so.
This chart will show you the comparison between the starter membership and the premium membership.
Not mentioned in the chart above is the awesome support you will get from the members of the WA community. It’s like a huge master mind group of people all interested in each other’s success.
If you do decide to upgrade, what does it cost?
There are three ways to go premium. The first is paying monthly. The monthly cost to become a premium member is $49. As an incentive to get people to take that important first step, the first month of premium membership is discounted to only $19, then $49 per month after that. There is no contract and you can quit anytime.
The second way is a semi-annual payment. As you can see above, you save $10/month if you opt for the 6 month payment method. You pay $234 for 6 months and then another $234 for the next 6 months. Again, no contract and you can stop anytime.
The third, and I think the best way is to pay yearly. You save $20 off the monthly price with an annual payment of $359. The reason I think it’s the best way, besides saving you a lot of money, is that you are committing yourself to a year of working on your own internet marketing business.
Nothing shows your committment to your success more than your investment in it!
But, it’s still not chump change. It’s a significant monetary committment. Is it worth it?
I like to think about it this way. I easily spend over a dollar a day on fountain drinks. I like the ice with the soda. I think nothing of stopping off at the convenience store to grab one. My habit costs me over $370 per year. I could stop drinking those sodas, which are bad for me anyway, and invest in a yearly premium membership, and have over $10 left over.
The cost is less than most gym memberships. A lot of us are happy to invest our hard-earned money to improve our physical well being and our looks.
As an investment in a business of your own, the cost is very reasonable. As with anything, it all comes down to what you want to spend your money on. It’s your choice.
The Wealthy Affiliate Affiliate Program
If you’re looking at starting your own affiliate marketing business, and Wealthy Affiliate is a training platform for affiliate marketing, then it stands to reason that Wealthy Affiliate would have an affiliate program, and they do. It’s one of the more lucrative programs in the niche.
Take a look at the program: It’s open to free Starter members as well as Premium members, but the Starter members earn half what Premium members earn.
If you’re so inclined, you have your first affiiate program ready-made for you when you join Wealthy Affiliate. After you’ve gotten started and have your website up an running, you’ll begin to get traffic to your site and from that traffic, you will get referrals, and some of those referrals will upgrade to premium.
That’s when you start getting paid by Wealthy Affiliate and start earning your membership back!
When your premium referrals reach 300 in a calendar year, you qualify for an all-expense-paid trip to Las Vegas for the annual Super Affiliate Conference with the other super affiliates in the program. Here’s a link to a post about the last Las Vegas conference.
The Choice is Yours, my friend. What are you going to do?
Thanks for reading my post. I hope you got something good out of it. Leave me a comment below and I’ll get back to you.
Disclosure: This post contains affiliate links. The FTC requires me to notify you that if you click on an affiliate link and end up purchasing a product, I will earn a commission.