I don’t want to over-simplify these strategies, but at the same time I don’t think using terms and concepts that the average person may not be familiar with are helpful either (and the point is that this is how the average person can make money online).
Imagine you want to learn how to train a dog, so you use an internet search engine to find information on that topic. Among the results are various articles, blogs, and of course offers for you to purchase the services of professional trainers or books on how to train a dog. If you decide to read through the articles because they are free, chances are that an average person who knows how to train dogs authored them and is simply choosing to share his/her information over the web. What you may also notice are various advertisements, links, and banners surrounding the content of the article. This is called affiliate marketing. Because the author of the article (or the publisher of that particular domain) chose to share information that many people will likely be searching for, merchants who offer products related to dogs, dog training, animals, and sometimes products unrelated may pay to have those advertisements on that particular site. The benefit to the merchant are,
1. The visitors to that site are targeted and therefor more likely to make a purchase or sign up for some offer related to what they are researching and,
2. If the website has heavy traffic then the opportunity for sales is greater.
The benefits to the site’s publisher or author are.
1. The main investment is the actual site itself which can be negligible and likely not an extra investment if the site was already in existence, and any applicable affiliate fees which are also minimal
2. The affiliate (you) may either be paid a flat rate to have the ads on his or her site, paid a commission every time a visitor clicks on an ad or link, or even greater commissions when someone makes a purchase. Commissions are sometimes also paid when a visitor subscribes to a merchants site and may not require an immediate purchase
3. While monetary success will always depend on the effort, essentially a site that started as a way to share information can be making money just by being online
The reason I referenced the dog training scenario was to illustrate how OFTEN we see these ads and links on random sites and for you to understand that every time that you do, chances are someone is making money. If you have a website or blog, or are interested in creating something to make some extra cash, it is not difficult to become an affiliate. Many major retailers and brands have links for affiliates on their sites. Google and ClickBank also have affiliate programs that help to match relevant merchants to your site, the important thing is to overcome the fear curve and put yourself out there.
Getting heavy and targeted site traffic is an important part of an affiliates success and will require some effort. There are many free resources on this topic so my suggestion is not to let the lack of knowledge be a deterrent.
So in closing,
* Having a website or blog with information to share that may attract a certain audience is a potential way to make money online
* Finding an affiliate program for your site isn’t difficult as it has become very popular
* It is possible to become an affiliate and start making money with little investment
* Getting targeted traffic to your site may be difficult, but there are so many free resources on that topic.
* Lastly, this does not necessarily involve writing a business plan or contacting someone’s corporate office. There are 3rd parties who are available to help match merchants with the right affiliates such as Google and ClickBank.
The biggest opportunity to fail as an affiliate is to not try, to not take advantage of the resources and opportunities because of fear of failure or lack of knowledge. Pay attention to the plethora of ads and links that direct you to offers as you casually search the web and you’ll notice that average people are making money. Why not share what you know and get paid for it?