how_to_expand_an_affiliate_siteSo you have an established affiliate site and are generating significant traffic. Hopefully that traffic is bringing in revenue and you have a cash flow positive site.

It’s time to think about scaling the site into a larger, more profitable business.

In this post I’ll talk about the two primary ways you can scale a single affiliate site into a larger entity: develop an authority site and develop a product.

From Niche to Authority

Most affiliate sites start out covering a specific niche and many stay restricted to that niche forever. This is fine and can be profitable and scalable through multiple sites, but if you’re trying to understand how to expand an affiliate site, chances are your single niche just won’t cut it.

Authority sites are sites that cover larger topic areas than a single niche. They are often more profitable but take longer to develop, which is why most people start out with the niche approach.

To expand your niche into an authority site, think about the larger topic area you wish to cover, and then begin expanding your site by covering additional niches within that area.

For example, if you have a location-based niche, one easy way to expand is to move from covering a single city to covering a single state, to adding cities in other states. This natural progression treats each individual topic as if it were its own niche, but brings them all under the larger umbrella of your authority market.

Develop a Product

The second way to expand an affiliate site into a larger business is to develop a product to sell yourself, rather than promote affiliate products.

Having your own product offering has a number of advantages. You can usually make more money directly from your site, and can even expand the product to other affiliate marketers, leveraging your former competitors in the blogosphere to work for you!

This is a very powerful technique to consider, but it’s usually only worth it if you already have a substantial reader base. Remember that conversion rates are likely to be low to begin with (though you can improve them over time), so you need to make sure you’re investing your time in building a product that has a high probability of success from day 1.

Taking the Next Step

Deciding when and how to expand an affiliate site into an affiliate business can be a difficult process. The most important thing to remember is that you develop the business that is right for you.

Take small steps consistently (just as you did to build your first affiliate site) and you’re more likely to have success. There are pros and cons to each approach you can take, so make sure you way all your options fully before you begin. Then stay focused and just take action!