Affiliate Marketing With & Without a Website




Website ownership responsibilities

Dating back to the “dot com” boom of two decades ago, a website has always been something that people wanted to possess. Some individuals paid to have websites created, while others learned how to create their own sites with the aid of software platforms like WordPress, Joomla, Weebly and other such providers; and while there were varying reasons for coveting a website, the underlying motivation was most often about making money from home.

We can all agree, however, that whether or not an individual owns a website, making money is often the result of providing a useful (in-demand?) product or service to consumers; but this is where many new website owners – and those who still wish to own one – encounter a significant challenge because, simply put, most people have nothing in the form of a product or service (‘product’) to offer and end up supporting a website from their own personal resources.

Yes! It takes money, time and work to operate a website; and while the cost of a domain name (ranging from $3.00 to upwards of $20,000 yearly, depending on the type of domain and extension), and the cost of Web hosting (ranging from $3.99 to upwards of $55.00 monthly, depending on the hosting company and account type), may not be a lot of money to some folks, there are still costs that must be absorbed if the website is not generating an income.

The website expense solution?

It is because of these costs that so many new website owners have sought ways to make money from their websites and, as a result have joined affiliate marketing programs, many of which are readily available at absolutely no cost for new affiliates. In short, affiliate marketing provides first time website owners the chance to market something online without their own product to sell, and the only requirements are to sign up with affiliate marketing program and agree to adhere its terms.

Affiliate marketing programs are usually owned by online merchants and/or retailers (‘merchants’) who encourage affiliates to sign on and promote the the merchant’s products in exchange for payment of a commission or flat fees to the affiliates for sales and/or referrals generated through the affiliates own efforts and expense.

That having been said, if you are a new website owner or you’re new to online marketing and want to make money from your website but you don’t have enough experience or capital to start your own online business, you might be in luck, because there are a number of affiliate marketing programs for you to choose from.

Becoming an affiliate marketer with the typical affiliate marketing program is often a pretty straightforward and easy process; but many newcomers still have some reservations about signing up, since they lack experience, basic knowledge and many of the skills required to generate sales and earn money. But they still must spend money to maintain their websites, so signing up is often the most practical thing to do, as it gives them an opportunity to earn money.

It’s a well known fact that affiliate marketing can be done without a website, as evidenced by the many instances in which online marketing has been done successfully by individuals who did not own websites; but these marketers utilized different strategies to promote their affiliate products. Such strategies included email marketing, offline promotions, e-book writing, article writing via ezines and participation in online forums, chats and message boards.

The following paragraphs describe such strategies in more detail

Email Marketing

Email marketing, or maintaining email lists, is actually the most popular affiliate marketing strategy that doesn’t require the affiliate to maintain a website. In this affiliate marketing strategy, what you basically do is maintain a list of the email ads of your prospective customers and provide them with articles that are relevant with the affiliate products and programs you are promoting.

Articles that you provide your contacts with need not always be promotional, because many individuals find such types of email annoying. To avoid causing such annoyance it would be better if you provide them with some relevant and informative content with just one or two small text ads that link to your merchant’s site.

Offline promotion, ebooks & free ezines

There are many ways on how you can promote your affiliate products offline. Among the common medium used for such promotions are classified ads, brochures and flyers. Classified ads would generally work better compared to the other two because classified ads in periodicals often get a wider audience.

If you are comfortable with expressing yourself via the written word, writing an e-book can be the best way for you to promote your affiliate products in the absence of an actual website. Just like in emails and newsletters, your readers would better appreciate your e-book if it is not too promotional but rather informative.

Be sure, however, to make the contents of your e-books relative to the actual affiliate products you are promoting. And just like in email marketing, you can just place text ads or banners somewhere near the end of your e-book that links to the merchant’s site.

Ezines are publications or articles that aim to inform individuals about a particular topic. If you don’t have a website and yet want to be an affiliate marketer, you can certainly use ezines to promote your affiliate products through articles that you write in which you insert links to your merchant’s site.

On the other hand, if you have a website, your ezine article may actually work well as content for your site; but when you have no website you can simply submit your free ezine articles to various websites that host ezines, like goarticles.com, ezinearticles.com and others. You can learn more about article writing, or refine your article writing skills to insure success.

Online discussion venues

With or without a website, you just can’t ignore online discussion venues (forums, chats, message boards, etc.) because they are great places for marketing your affiliate products. In chats, forums and message boards as well as discussion boards with topics related to your products, you can easily find people who may be interested in the products you are promoting.

With all these strategies it may seem that a website is really not a requirement to start marketing affiliate products and promoting affiliate programs; and while starting an affiliate program without a website may be easy, achieving success in without a website is quite another thing. A marketer can actually achieve enormous success in affiliate marketing without a website, but it is a rare instance when a “newbie” will reach the same level of success.

Having a website is not a pre-requisite for entering into an affiliate program, unless the program owner requires you to have one; and while this is so, I would still recommend that you have your own website, if not now, then maybe at a later date, because having a website can create a lot of advantages in affiliate marketing.

For one thing, a website provides you with a place where you can creatively promote, not only one of your affiliate products, but all of your affiliate products; and with a website you can also advertise your affiliate products to a wider market.

Again, having a website is not a requirement infor marketing affiliate products; but with the advantages that a website can provide, having one would certainly enhance your marketing efforts and could possibly be helpful in many other ways beyond making your affiliate marketing a lot easier.

The Pursuit of Affiliate Marketing Success


The lure of affiliate marketing

Over the past decade thousands of Internet users have decided to join the community of affiliate marketers, and there is no indication that enthusiasm for pursuing a career in affiliate marketing has waned, even if a significant number of those enthusiasts are getting involved on a part-time basis. There is no debating the degree to which technology is now a dominant force in our lives, both personal and business; and Internet use is the engine that drives that dominance; so becoming an affiliate marketer even in this 21st Century can still be a very wise one.

That having been said, it is important to make the distinction between a decision to become an affiliate marketer and the commitment of time, money and other resources required to become a successful affiliate marketer, since anyone can decide to be an affiliate marketer; but success demands more, and it begins with learning the basics of affiliate marketing as a business, realizing what sacrifices will need to be made for you to accomplish your goals and then committing to make those sacrifices. It’s the only way to reach your affiliate marketing goals and objectives, which is prerequisite to achieving success.

Due diligence is job one

Make a few promises to yourself, the first of which should be to learn as much as possible about any affiliate marketing company or network before you join its program. Doing so is actually very easy, because all it a few hours of research with the help of your favorite search engine. Since search engines are the primary sources of information, you should be able to find most of what you’re looking for about a given company; but to be on the safe side, you should make sure the company has been operating for several years, and that the program being offered is a good and reliable one.

On the other hand, it is quite possible that you might come across – or be invited to join – a company that has recently started (many new companies agressively recruit affiliates); and if this is the case, your due diligence becomes the most important ally, since it is of the utmost importance to make sure that the owner is of good character and unquestionable credibility. As stated earlier, becoming an affiliate marketer is not a difficult thing to do, and doesn’t have to be made a complex task; but it is always prudent always use caution.

Reward is equivalent to input

Many individuals are under the impression that there is a lot of money to be earned in the affiliate marketing business without the need to invest a penny; and this couldn’t be further from the truth; because even though the majority of affiliate programs are free to join, the affiliate must invest money at some point in time during an affiliate marketing career if s/he expects to be successful. This becomes more evident when an affiliate marketer’s primary tasks are taken into consideration: To promote, market and sell the merchant’s products, with product sales being the main objective.

In view of such tasks and objective the affiliate’s budget will most likely be expended on the advertising and promotion of websites, salesletters (sales pages), video creation and distribution, podcasts, blogs and other such methods of exposure in order to attract interested persons and convert them into buyers. In most scenarios however, the amount of money spent will be earned back in affiliate commissions paid by the merchants; and although those commissions may not be equivalent – in amounts or time span – to the affiliate’s expenditures, they nevertheless are paid when earned and due.

Commitment to success

To achieve success as an affiliate marketer will take time, effort, and a lot of hard work; and as pointed out earlier, the more an affiliate is willing to commit to making these sacrifices to his/her business, the greater the success s/he will achieve; but the most important characteristic an affiliate will need is persistence – or what is sometimes referred to as stick-to-it-ness, because there will be times when circumstance would present what might appear to be such hardships that “quitting” looks to be more attractive option than persisting. If you’re that affiliate, Just don’t quit.

An affiliate marketing business (entrepreneurship?) can be one of the most rewarding among businesses that need little to no upfront investment to get started; but there are certain other things that will be needed, including a variety of different strategies and methods which range from creating one or more websites to promoting various products and/or services. You’ll also need to advertise, as well as keep in constant contact with any sub-affiliates you may have recruited. You should be ready to commit most of your time during the first few months of your program; and once your network begins to get established, your work load will lighten.

No shortage of tools and support

Always remember that even though the system of affiliate marketing may seem overwhelming at first, you should realize that you are surrounded by online support; but keep in mind that many of the individuals who join affilate programs are new to the business, so you’re not alone in your uncertainties. Many organizations and companies have around the clock support forums and customer support for those affiliates who need advice or assistance; and a lot of programs are equipped with e-books, tutorials, articles, and tips that will make your pursuit of affiliate marketing success a little easier.