On this blog, I mostly try to focus on tips and information surrounding things you should do when starting a new affiliate marketing site. However, I also think it’s important to discuss things you shouldn’t do, and how to learn from common mistakes.
In this post, I’ll go through what I see as the 5 Biggest Affiliate Marketing Mistakes. Easily avoid these mistakes by following the pointers and guidelines I outline below.
Affiliate Mistake #5: Lack of Focus
When you first start a site, it’s extremely common to have dozens, if not hundreds of ideas on what topics to cover, and how you want to structure the site layout. With so many ideas, it’s easy to lose focus from the primary content-area you’re covering. The solution is to set clear goals for your website, and make sure every task you complete is a step towards them.
Keeping your site in-line with a common theme will not only help clarify your site’s purpose and be more relevant to readers, but it will also help the search engines understand exactly what your site is about, and perceive you as an authority in that area.
If you have trouble staying focused on one area, try writing out a short mission statement for your site. With every new article idea you write, first consider whether that article (or product promotion) is truly in line with the objectives you’ve set out to accomplish. Having this objective written down helps ensure that you stick with one purpose, and don’t gradually shift away from that mission over time.
Affiliate Mistake #4: Lack of Discipline
Whether you’re starting a new work-from-home company full-time or in your spare time, being disciplined about your approach is essential.
Many new marketers lack consistency when it comes to article content, style, and publication. Whether it’s because posts are all over the map, or if you publish 10 posts 1 day and then nothing for a month, ask yourself how you could more effectively manage your site. For many, finding a routine that works for you will greatly ease your efforts, and help you gain a consistent reader base over time.
Affiliate Mistake #3: Not Asking for the Sale
Many new bloggers are afraid of selling. They focus too intensely on writing “perfect” posts that they feel injecting a product or offer into the post is going to alienate their user.
The reality is that your site should be designed to both help users and promote products that are relevant to them. As an affiliate, the burden of making the sale does not entirely fall on your shoulders (the products/services you’re promoting should do this for you) but you will more effectively convert users if you can provide ‘warm leads,’ that is, encourage a consumer to define for themselves what they need, and provide access to that product for them.
Affiliate Mistake #2: Overselling
I know I already mentioned the concept of Not Asking for the Sale, but I find that most marketers fall into 1 of 2 camps: they either are hesitant to encourage a user to buy a product, or they spend all their time and energy focusing on that sale.
The reality is that you have to find the balance that’s right for you. If every post focuses on a product or why a user should buy yet another service, you may be doing yourself a disservice.
You should think of your sales process as a method of gaining user’s trust over time. If you help them solve a problem, they’re more likely to value your opinion when it’s time to buy a product. As an internet marketer, your aim should always be to help the user find the product or service that’s right for them, even if that service is a free trial, or basic blog from which you, as an affiliate, don’t profit.
Affiliate Mistake #1: Giving Up Too Soon!
I cannot stress this last point enough:
Giving up too soon is by far the number 1 most common affiliate marketing mistake.
Many people are drawn to affiliate marketing with the hope of earning substantial part-time or full-time income while working from home. This dream can be a reality, but only after a lot of time and hard work is spent striving towards it.
Many people ask how to earn money quickly with affiliate marketing, but there is no magic solution that makes a website rank in 30 days or less. There is no magic niche that will become profitable after a month or two. Building a sustainable, long-term business online takes time, just like building a viable business in the “real world.”
If you’re thinking about throwing in the towel, I strongly urge you to stick with it a few more months. You cannot fully evaluate the progress and potential of a new site until the 1-year mark. 6 months of consistent content is a minimum. 1 year is more realistic, and by that point you’ll begin to get an idea of what results you can expect moving forward.
If you’re stuck and ready to quit, the best step you can take is to join a community that offers you support.