Using Affiliate Links on Your Blog to Make Money

Create a blog and use affiliate links

This is probably the most common approach to online passive income stream but it's also one of the easiest and most effective.

The idea is simple, you create a website, fill it with quality content and then use the hits your content will receive to direct your visitors towards products (often created by others).

A quick guide to affiliate marketing

Your target product could be anything from a book (through a service like Amazon), an online course or even offline products or services (such as mobile phone contracts, think GiffGaff). That is the beauty of this approach, other people create the products and you'll just take care of pointing people towards it.

There's another huge plus point for this type of approach. Many retailers store cookies for 30 days, meaning that if someone decided to make their purchase later in the month you'd get paid then, also getting paid on anything else you purchased too. 

Choose your niche wisely

Different niches pay different affiliate fees, so choose wisely. The good news is lots of online industries already have available affiliate schemes, such as hosting provides (such as Fasthosts) or Drupal theme makers (Drupal is a CMS which you can use to easily create your site). 

As an example, say you decided to focus on... I dunno, slow cooker repices! You'd create a TON of good content relating to slow cookers (cooker reviews, recipe ebooks etc) and your readers would begin to trust that you were the best source of slow cooker content on the internet. Happy readers make happy purchasers and they'll soon to be purchasing their slow cooker products by clicking through links on your site. You'd make your income off the fees these product sellers pass on to you.

A narrow focus beats a broad range

The above example outlines the important of focusing on one specific area, or niche. If you instead focus on broad subjects such as fitness, you'll never be able to create the same relationship with your readers.

Some of the most efficient products to focus on are often digital products such as membership courses or ebooks. This is an industry that is ready made for this affiliate marketing approach and you'll often find sellers are willing to pay higher affiliate fees to compensate you for your leads.

Amazon Affiliates

How do you become an affiliate?

Becoming an affiliate advertiser is usually a straight forward process. Below is a list of some of the biggest and best affiliate schemes available today.

  • Affiliate Window
  • Linkshare
  • Amazon Affiliates
  • Reward Style

What makes a suitable affiliate link and how are they added to your site?

Deciding which links to add to your site is a crucial choice and will dictate the success of your advertising campaigns.

What makes a suitable link?

The affiliate sites listed above contain huge amounts of different products from a wide range of categories. You can search for advertisers that you think would be suitable to add to your site. Once you find the right product, you'll be able to find a link to generate the code you'll need to add to your site to display the link or banner.

Remember: you'll want to select products for your targeted niche, the more focused the better. 

How to add an affiliate link to your site

When you've found the ideal links to add to your site, you'll want to add them to as many relevant posts or pages as possible. If your niche is road bikes and you've chosen Wiggle as your affiliate partner, you'll want to link phrases such as 'buy road bikes' to Wiggle's link, attaching your affiliate tracking code in the process.

You can also return to older posts and add links in there, too. A well-written post will still receive traffic long after it's published date so there are further opportunities to make a sale.

What about affiliate review sites?

In my free list of passive income ideas, we discussed the concept of creating comparison sites. These make idea posts to use affiliate links. You put the hard work in to create a comprehensive review site, earn money from it! 

Remember: It's not just blog posts where you can use affiliate links. If you have a strong social media presence you can post appropriate links there, too.

Remember to disclose!

It's important you let your readers know that you're employing an affiliate link technique. Not to worry though, because if you create enough compelling content your readers will be happy to support your site by making their purchases through your site.