Jump into affiliate marketing with our 3-part guide!

Here at revJOLT, we’ve had a lot of requests for an Affiliate Marketing 101, a guide for complete beginners on how to go about setting up a successful online affiliate marketing business. Well, how could we refuse?

In this part, I’ll cover the basics of how it works. In part 2, we’ll cover affiliate linking, and in part 3, we’ll offer you a look into the specialised realm of lead generation. Let’s get started!

Part 1: Affiliate marketing basics

Would starting an affiliate marketing business be a good idea?

Have you heard of the term “passive income”? It’s the concept of setting something up so that it churns over, earning you revenue, even in your sleep. Affiliate marketing is a great way of doing that. So, what are the advantages to being an affiliate and not just trying to sell your own products?

  • You don’t have to spend thousands on R&D
  • You don’t have to do the market testing and validation for the product or service
  • You don’t have to actually store any products yourself
  • You don’t have to deal with the shopping cart and money processing hassles
  • You don’t have to deal with the customer service and aftercare
  • While commissions can vary, there are plenty of different industries that use affiliate marketing and they can offer great commission rates. The world is your oyster.
  • Work from home or from anywhere. This is the age of the digital nomad!
  • And did I mention you can earn money in your sleep?

The disadvantages are that it takes some perseverance and patience to set up a solid affiliate business, and income is not as steady or predictable as a salaried job. But you can also use it as just one income stream while you get set up, perhaps as a side hustle to your main job. In fact, I would strongly recommend you do just that starting out.

Who does what?

Here are some basic terms you need to get straight in your head first.

Affiliate marketer, AKA the Publisher: (This is you!) Someone who promotes another company’s products or services by forwarding potential customers to the Advertiser, most often via the internet.

Advertiser (or Vendor): Creator or retailer of said goods and services. They pay a commission to their affiliate publishers for consumers on the basis of actual sales that have been driven by this method.

Consumer (or Customer): The person who is purchasing said product or service. Your average Joe or Joan who is trying to find great deals and information, interested in buying.

Platform (or Network): The system that facilitates tracking and redirecting the consumers from the Publisher to the Advertiser’s site.

What you will need to set up

The bare minimum:

  1. Some way to send traffic to your advertisers, like a website or social media accounts
  2. Traffic analysis tools like Google Analytics
  3. The time and ability to update your content regularly
  4. Knowledge of the legislation you need to comply with
  5. An affiliate network to sign up with and an idea of what products you can promote

Optional, but highly recommended:

  1. Newsletter emails and subscription management software
  2. Advertising budget for PPC, SEM, and Social Media ads
  3. Knowledge of SEO

Now, see our rundown on how to action affiliate linking, the most common form of affiliate marketing in part 2!

(Oh, and signup for revJOLT‘s affiliate network for FREE today using the buttons below!)

Publishers (lead sellers) sign up here Advertisers (lead buyers) sign up here