Why Start An Affiliate Program?
If you’ve dipped your toe in the online business world, you’ve no doubt come across the affiliate marketing business model. This is where you sell products or services that have been created by other people and you earn a commission on everything you sell.
You may think that trying to start an affiliate program for your business, where affiliates sell your products or services for you, is perhaps a step too far. But having your own online affiliate program can help you develop an entirely new income stream.
Affiliate programs for digital products provide smart business owners with an additional stream of income for selling the same product they sell directly. The return on investment might be lower for each product now that you have to split the profits with a sales person, but the rewards can be enormous too.
How To Start An Affiliate Program For Your Business
When you start an affiliate program selling digital products your cost per item goes down each time you sell a new one. Therefore you can absolutely afford to let affiliate marketers to promote and sell your digital information products.
The best affiliate products to promote are digital products. They are good for you as a product creator as you only have to produce it once and it can sold again and again. They are good for your affiliates because you can easily give them a copy to review for their customers. And they are good for customers because they can instantly download them once they’ve purchased it, so there’s no waiting around for delivery.
Create A Product That People Will Want To Buy And Sell
Of course, if you want to attract affiliates to sell your products for you, you’ll need a product that is everything you say it is and more. You want your affiliates to be excited to promote the product because it does what the sales page says it will do.
The simplest way to start an affiliate program is to create and sell an ebook. If you have a lot of knowledge on a particular subject, you can write an ebook in a few days or weeks that can really help people in that niche or market. Your website may already contain lots of information and material that you can use to write your ebook.
An online course can generate even more money per sale. There is a greater perceived value in a course, rather than an ebook. Your course can be delivered through a membership site, or through an instant digital download of video and/or audio files.
Set Up Your Website Right
When it comes to promoting a product, your sales page should promote that product and nothing else. You don’t want to lead people away from your website when they’re coming there to learn about a specific product. Take away anything that links them away. Your affiliates will appreciate it. It’s imperative that you have a clear call to action, great images, good descriptions and benefits of the product on the page. If your product pages don’t convert, then affiliates won’t want to promote the product.
Many times super affiliates won’t just land on your doorstep. You need to do something to recruit and attract them. Get some sales behind you, and then send a couple super affiliates a sample of your product if it fits in with their niche. Offer them a special commission rate for promoting your products.
Create Marketing Content
Affiliates need copy, images, text and more to promote your products and services. They’re not going to create it for you. If you want them to send out emails to their list, create an email that they can edit and make their own. Do the same with all the marketing materials you offer them to ensure that they promote your products. Plus, you do want to maintain some control over your brand by creating your own marketing graphics.
A Fair Commission
Affiliates are like sales people who get paid only when they make a sale. If you want them to do a lot to make that sale, then they’ll need a fair percentage of sales to make it worth their time. If you don’t offer at least 50% commission you’re unlikely to attract high-level affiliate marketers when you start an affiliate program. In addition to paying a fair commission, you can also offer prizes to top sellers so that they work harder to promote your products. Affiliates like competitions. If they can win prizes such as additional money or a physical prize, they’ll be more enthusiastic to promote your product.FREE Checklist: Create An Effective Sales Funnel
The Right Software To Start An Affiliate Program
You need to have the right software when you start an affiliate program. The best way to pick the right software is to make a list of the features that you want the software to have. Plus, set a budget for the software so that you can rule out some. But, don’t be too cheap either. If you want your business to grow, you need to pick the right software to avoid too much changing. Affiliates get tired of too many system changes.
- PostAffiliatePro.com: This affiliate program software can work in the cloud or as a download that you upload and run from your own server. There are different levels that you can purchase for the SaaS (software as a service) program that are affordable. What’s great is that in this case you own your affiliates even though it is a cloud-based service.
- aMember.com: This is a plugin that works with WordPress and other website software. You can even set up a membership website with this software. It’s a one-time purchase with yearly upgrades and excellent customer care.
- ClickBank.com : This is a very popular network used my many people to find affiliate programs. ClickBank helps both affiliates and product creators run their programs in a professional manner. The one drawback is that you don’t own your affiliates. You’ll need to ask them to sign up for a separate list or something that enables you to give them more marketing materials to use.
- JVZoo.com: This is free software that you can use in the cloud to promote your products and run an affiliate program. It has all the bells and whistles, plus you’ll be part of their marketplace which will enable super-affiliates to find you.
Creating An Effective Sales Funnel For Your Affiliate Product
Having affiliates to promote your products and services is like having a legion of fans screaming your name. They’ll blog about you, promote you, and be excited about it. If you’re offering a great product or service, they know that it makes them look good. After all, their job is to promote things to their audience that solves their problems. Your product could be the answer.
When you start an affiliate program you need an effective sales funnel to guide the prospects that the affiliates send you into customers. You focus, or funnel, the attention of your prospects in a very specific way, providing value, building a relationship and eventually presenting an offer that your target audience will want to buy. To learn more, download my free Sales Funnel Checklist which outlines the best practices for making your sales funnel produce the intended result, lots of traffic, lots of prospects and lots of sales.