(FYI: This post contains affiliate links!)
What is affiliate marketing?
Affiliate marketing is an arrangement or opportunity to earn commission by referring people to particular websites. Money can be gained through traffic or sales, depending on the agreement. More often than not, it works by a percentage of a sale going to the referrer or publisher (the person using affiliate links – YOU!).
How do I get started?
Your first step will be to apply to an affiliate marketing network, such as Trade Tracker, Awin, Webgains or Rakuten, for example. Personally, I’m a huge Trade Tracker and Awin fan as they are such simple platforms to use. Many brands run their affiliate schemes through networks such as these (Awin probably has the widest selection of brands), meaning you can earn a pretty penny by finding appropriate companies to work with and applying to their schemes. Lots of companies also run their own affiliate programmes independently too, so it’s worth asking if you’re working with a brand.
But then what?
When using Awin or Trade Tracker, once being accepted by a brand, I then open their link builder to generate affiliate links i.e. links that are tracked and show that they stemmed from me. These links can then be added to blog posts or Instagram. They’re a really simple tool to use on Instagram stories for fashion posts, stationery etc. You just add the ‘swipe up’ link (if you have more than 10,000 followers) and people can click through to make their purchase, giving you a small amount of commission. Whatever your business is, there’s usually a way to generate a fairly passive income through these links.
On blogs, you can do round up posts e.g. ‘The Top 10 Must-Haves for New Mums’ and use the affiliate links so that if someone clicks through on your blog, it’ll be tracked on your affiliate account too. You can also download images, banners and all sorts of creatives on affiliate sites, to add to the sidebar of your blog or website, or in the middle of a post, for example. Obviously don’t go too crazy with them though, as we all know what a turn off it is to have a bazillion adverts when you’re trying to read an article.
How do I get paid?
This varies from site to site but most affiliate programmes will have a payment threshold. So for example, on Awin, you will need to earn £20 in commission before you can withdraw into your own account. Some sites do also pay into a Paypal account so do check before you sign up, in case that’s not going to work out for you!
- It can be time consuming to begin with but once you get your head round and get into a bit of a routine with it, it is very simple. Promise!
- Occasionally people can put off by affiliate links but just be honest and have a clear disclaimer on your blog or Instagram posts and generally people will be happy for you to get a small percentage rather than a big corporation!
- It is not a ‘get rich quick’ scheme. To be a successful publisher with affiliate scenes, it does take time, commitment and creativity.
- Always disclose affiliate links.
- Use natural links so that your blog post or Instagram still flow.
- I find it much easier to create links from my laptop so I can have different windows open to copy and paste more easily.
- Look out for events or special days and prepare posts in advance. e.g. World Elephant Day or Christmas.
- Join just one or two brands to begin with or it can get overwhelming!
- Look out for emails from brands you’ve signed up with as they’ll often let you know when they’ve got a sale on or give you a special code to share with your followers.
So there you go… a whistle stop tour of affiliate links! Do let me know if you have any other questions or sign up to them – I’d love to her how you’re getting on!