How to Convert Your Blog Readers Into Money with Affiliate Marketing
How to Convert Your Blog Readers Into Money with Affiliate Marketing (How to Make Money Blogging)
Just a couple of decades ago, having a robust business website was something that only big companies could achieve. Besides the fact that it took hundreds of hours to develop a site, the maintenance costs alone were enough to bankrupt small businesses. Fast forward to 2021 and creating a website has never been easier. And, even though it may not seem like it, making a profit from blog readers is also a simpler process than it’s ever been before.
At lemonads, we’ve worked with countless publishers that specialize in monetizing their blogs, so we’re familiar with the steps required to convert readers into money. We know that overcoming the different challenges can be tough. As long as you identify the best alternative and develop a flexible plan, you should be able to learn how to convert blog readers into money.
In this piece, we’ll go over some of the challenges you’ll face when learning how to make money blogging, discuss the definition of affiliate marketing, and give you tips on monetizing your blog content.
Is It Possible to Make Money Off Blog Readers?
Before going over the steps on how to start a blog and make money, let’s address one of the most common questions that beginner bloggers ask: is it possible to make money off your readers?
The short answer to this is yes, there are many different ways you can monetize your blog. And, the best part is that you don’t have to own a company, offer any services, or pay to acquire knowledge before starting.
For this article, we will focus specifically on monetizing a blog through affiliate marketing. Affiliate marketing is a type of promotion that is said to account for 15% of the advertising industry’s total revenue. This type of marketing is used by millions of advertisers, which are the companies that are looking to promote their services, products, and solutions.
Now that we’ve cleared that up, let’s go over the definition of affiliate marketing.
What Is Affiliate Marketing?
Affiliate marketing is a type of digital performance advertising where companies only pay when a third-party marketer (known as the affiliate) drives a conversion.
In this type of marketing, the affiliate is responsible for promoting an advertiser’s products or services using a collection of different channels, which mainly consist of social media, blogs, paid advertising, and other online platforms.
In this setup, affiliates receive a commission for every conversion they produce. A conversion is defined as a certain action that advertisers want their audience members to take, which can range from filling out a form and asking a question about a product to making a purchase.
Although affiliates often develop online paid advertising campaigns, many marketers generate a large portion of their earnings through their blogs. But, to understand how to make money from your blog, you need to gain a bit more understanding of how affiliate marketing works.
How Does Affiliate Marketing Work?
There are many stakeholders in the affiliate ecosystem, but the two most important players are advertisers and publishers.
Advertisers are looking to promote their services and products, so they want to work with affiliates that can help them reach their target audience. For instance, if an advertiser is selling hearing aids, they will look for a marketer that attracts a relatively older audience that’s more likely to be interested in these products.
To attract the best marketers, advertisers create affiliate programs that contain all the requirements and information marketers need to work with them. So, affiliates must pay close attention to the program and where they come from before they start producing content.
As we mentioned before, affiliates are the third-party marketers that work with advertisers on a performance basis. There are many types of affiliates, but for this article, we’ll focus on publishers, which are marketers that manage their publishing platforms such as a blog or app.
Blogs and similar channels are called publishing platforms because they allow owners to distribute written content, images, posts, and other media that can be used to promote the advertisers’ products and services.
Affiliate Offers Explained: Where to Find the Best Alternatives
Affiliate offers are extremely important because they include all the specifications that publishers have to adhere to. Not only this, but it also includes information about the exact commission amount, the payout structure and turnaround time, cookie duration, target areas, and other important details.
While all affiliate programs are different, the two main ways to find these are through direct advertisers and affiliate networks.
Direct advertisers are companies that manage their affiliate programs. In most cases, this means that the application process to participate in the program is a bit more extensive and that the affiliate support may not be as fast as with networks.
This makes sense, given the fact that these businesses dedicate part of their internal resources to managing this part of their marketing.
Affiliate networks are businesses designed to connect publishers with the most suitable advertiser affiliate programs. Because these organizations are dedicated to working with countless publishers, they usually have a more flexible application process and help advertisers of all levels find the perfect marketer. And, as a bonus to publishers, the collection of offers available at a network ranges in terms of industry, so these affiliates will always be able to find something for their audience.
When Should You Start Monetizing Your Blog?
This question is challenging because all blogs are different. The general answer would be that you should start monetizing your blog as soon as you have a steady stream of traffic and a solid email list. This means that you have a good number of visitors flowing through your site every month and that these users are engaged enough to leave their contact information.
With the above in mind, remember that every industry is unique. For instance, some industries require thousands of daily visitors for blogs to be successful. More niche specialties can generate money with a few thousand visitors per month, so take time to analyze your industry and figure out the ideal range for you.
How to Convert Blog Readers Into Money
Now that we’ve discussed the basics of affiliate marketing and what you need to succeed, let’s take a look at the steps you need to take to convert blog readers into money with affiliate marketing.
Understand the Industry
Even if you already have a successful blog, you need to understand the industry itself before you sign up for an affiliate program. Besides figuring out the minimum number of users you need to attract, you also have to figure out if the products you’re selling are expensive and how long the conversion flow is.
This data will let you know how easy it will be to generate conversions and for starter affiliates, the easier the better. But, also note that the easier a program is to convert, the lower the payout will be.
Learn as Much as You Can About the Audience
You may feel like you already know your target audience. After all, you’ve done a great job attracting them to your content. However, you also need to figure out what steps your visitors go through before making a purchase and determine how to use this information to your advantage.
For example, you can develop content that addresses their pain points in an informative manner and includes a link to the affiliate product you’re promoting to make a commission from every purchase that comes from this content.
Identify and Analyze Leading Competitors
Creating content that converts is tough, especially for new affiliates. Rather than going through the motions, you can shorten the learning curve by identifying the leading competitors and analyzing their content. You’ll get a good idea of the topics they cover, the tone used, and the type of information they provide to help users make better purchases.
Conduct Keyword Research
Your blog’s success is determined by a collection of different variables, but none may be as important as the keywords you use.
The keywords are the terms that people use to search for content on the web. Search engines like Google, which are responsible for generating a massive chunk of internet traffic, also use keywords to generate a results list every time a user conducts a query.
To drive low-cost, high-engagement traffic to your blog, you need to choose the right keywords, create an effective strategy to target these terms and develop content that delivers value to your readers.
Find the Best Affiliate Offers
We’ve mentioned the importance of choosing the best offer and the different channels available, so we’ll just take the time to remind you to evaluate all potential offers and test the best candidates to determine which ones produce the best results. As long as a program is active and producing good results for you, there's no reason why you shouldn't keep participating in it.
Develop Tailored Campaigns
All bloggers are different, but taking a disorganized approach won’t produce the best results. Instead, you should develop a tailored campaign strategy and figure out exactly what you’ll do to find the best offer, drive traffic to your site, and boost conversions.
Ensure the Technical Side of Your Site is SEO-Friendly
Keywords are a great start, but you also have to focus on other areas of search engine optimization (SEO) if you want to attract a significant number of users without paying for ads or backlinks. Pay close attention to the technical elements that affect loading speed and overall functionality as these will make or break your campaigns.
Monitor and Optimize Your Content
Like all types of digital marketing, affiliate advertising can and should be tracked, monitored, and optimized regularly. Make sure that you take the time to create an optimization schedule and wait until you have statistically significant data before you start optimizing your materials.
Already Have a Popular Blog? It’s Time to Find the Best Affiliate Offer
Setting up your blog and cultivating an engaged audience is just half the battle. You also need to find the offers that give you the highest chance of success and deliver value on every front.
If you want to learn more or need help finding the best affiliate offers, contact lemonads, and our team will be glad to help.
Keywords: how to start a blog and make money, monetizing a blog, how to make money blogging
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