Affiliate marketing is a great way to generate a passive income stream. There are tens of thousands of affiliate products that you can promote, allowing you to make money online. The best part is that you don’t even need your own website to make money with affiliate marketing.
Is affiliate marketing as effective as it used to be?
Is affiliate marketing dead?
I get asked that question a lot. It’s a fair question, especially given the fact that most marketers out there have tried affiliate marketing at some point, and failed. So is it dead, or is there still hope for affiliate marketing?
It’s true that some companies have left the industry, but this change has meant people are flocking to affiliate networks like never before. And why wouldn’t they? There’s a lot of money to be made in affiliate marketing — especially if you do it right.
Affiliate marketing has never been stronger, in fact. It’s just changing.
And even though the landscape is shifting, there are plenty of affiliate marketing opportunities out there for you to make money from your website or other online assets. The only difference is that you need to be a bit more creative and find them.
Let’s take a look at some of the effective ways to promote affiliate products now and beyond.
Read on to find out.
How Has Affiliate Marketing Trends Changed Overtime?
Affiliate marketing has been around for decades, but it wasn’t until the early 2000s that the industry really started booming. Affiliate marketing was generally regarded as a way to generate leads and increase brand awareness.
However, with the advent of internet technology, affiliate marketing has grown and varied immensely in the past few years. Affiliate marketing has changed over time.
Check out what works now.
It used to be that affiliate marketing meant you were selling someone else’s products. It was pretty straightforward, just a matter of sending someone to a website, getting a referral, and getting a commission. Not any more.
This Type of Affiliate Marketing Doesn’t Work Any More
Affiliate marketing has evolved.
Now it’s not just about selling other people’s products and making a commission, it’s about building relationships with your audience and creating an atmosphere that they love.
It’s about creating content and adding value to the conversation so that people will want to buy the products and services you promote. It’s also about building your own brand and selling your own products and services.
Also, in the early days, you could promote products and make money if anyone you referred bought something, and the merchant didn’t really care if it was a good sale or not. There were no quality checks, no advanced tracking, and no one really cared as long as the person referred by you purchased something.
Affiliate spamming was a big problem back then. I used to get a lot of spammy affiliate emails back then, offering me cheap links that would send me traffic if I bought them. I would also get a lot of comments on old blog posts from people trying to promote their stuff.
If you’ve been on the internet for more than five years, you might remember it. It was when affiliates would email you with a link to a product that they would profit from and would try to convince you to buy it.
That’s not how it works now.
To prevent affiliate spam now there are many systems in place.
Many websites and platforms have developed systems to prevent spam or to stop affiliates from promoting their products in a spammy or dishonest way. And most networks like Facebook and Google also have systems in place to make sure there isn’t affiliate spam.
For example, Amazon is very clear about what you are and aren’t allowed to promote on their platform. The platform is designed to prevent you from promoting products in a way that looks like an advertisement.
There is also another system that many affiliate networks of today follow, to prevent spam. And that is, these affiliate platforms require you to have a certain number of sales in a specific amount of time for you to get paid or the merchant can cancel your campaign. This is why it’s so important to promote offers that are relevant to your audience.
Challenges with Affiliate Marketing
In today’s world affiliate marketers face new and different challenges than they used to in the past. But they are nothing you can’t handle.
Today affiliate marketing is mostly about building trust and giving value. If you want to build a successful affiliate business, you need to build trust with your audience.
You need to build trust with the merchants you’re promoting, and you need to build trust with your audience by not trying to trick them into buying products that they don’t need.
Affiliate marketing has grown into a multi-billion dollar market. Because of this, it’s gotten very crowded. Due to the rise of work from home culture, more and more people are getting into affiliate marketing. So, if you decide to go down the affiliate marketing route, you have to be willing to put in a lot of effort in order to be successful.
Because it has become an extremely crowded space, it’s so important to know what you’re selling. You won’t be able to stand out in a crowded space if you’re just trying to be louder and brasher than the other people in the space. You need to get creative and add value to your proposition.
Affiliate Program Approvals
Affiliate programs used to be much easier to get into, and you could make money simply by having an online presence.
Some affiliate programs that I’m in right now are much more exclusive than they used to be. They used to take on anyone and everyone, but now they’re much more stringent with who they take into their program.
It’s much harder to get into affiliate programs now because of the high number of people applying to them. You need to have a website with a decent amount of traffic or a good social media following to get into some affiliate programs. Some affiliate programs may also need you to have a lot of followers or subscribers on social media platforms like Twitter and Instagram.
Change in Customer Attitude
Another challenge with affiliate marketing is that people are smarter than they were a decade ago. With so many marketers out there trying all different kinds of tactics, people have wised up and they’re not as easily influenced as they were before. The days of stuffing your blog posts with a load of links to Amazon are gone.
This sort of model has been abused by a lot of people who are only in it for the money. A lot of people have become wary of affiliate marketing tactics because of this.
The best way to combat that is to build a relationship with your followers and talk to them more about things that have something to do with providing value to them rather than you earning affiliate money.
Also, it’s important that you have a high quality product or service. If you don’t have a high quality product, then you’re not going to have a loyal audience that will want to continue to buy from you.
It Can Get Overwhelming
Affiliate marketing has become overwhelming in recent times because of the volume of products that are available out there today. When I first started in affiliate marketing, I had less than 400 products to choose from.
Today, there are thousands of affiliate products to choose from. Making money with affiliate marketing today means you have to be more targeted and more selective.
Doing the Same Thing
Another challenge with affiliate marketing today is that every one is doing the same thing. Now that everyone knows that affiliate marketing is a great way to make money, everyone’s jumping on the bandwagon.
It’s no longer just bloggers and podcasters using it to make money but even big companies are getting in on the action.
When it comes to promoting products as an affiliate, you have to create your own style and voice. It’s better to be unique than to be a “me too” affiliate. The best way to do this is to be completely honest with yourself about how you’re different.
You can’t just copy someone else’s style and expect it to work for you. You need to have your own style and your own voice. Just because someone else is successful at something, doesn’t mean that you’ll be successful at it too just because you’re copying their style.
What Do the Numbers Say?
Affiliate marketing has now turned into a billion dollar industry. Here are some interesting statistics about affiliate marketing that show you why affiliate marketing isn’t dead and is only growing with no signs of stopping.
- According to statistics affiliate marketing is now worth $12 Billion.
- 81% of brands rely on affiliate programs to improve their business and one of the main reasons why affiliate marketing is so popular is because it’s a very cost-effective way of marketing and also it helps brands reach a wider audience.
- ClickBank, a very popular affiliate marketing network has paid over $4.2 Billion to its affiliates, in the last 20 years.
- 84% of publishers in the US alone use affiliate marketing as their main method of monetization.
- 16 per cent of all e-commerce sales that take place in the US and Canada are from affiliate marketing.
- You can earn anywhere from 25% to up to 75% commissions on average promoting digital products as an affiliate. Some vendors even pay 100% affiliate commissions on front end sale.
- A popular affiliate marketer made a whopping $105,619.13 in one month from affiliate marketing.
The Future of Affiliate Marketing
There will always be a need for affiliate marketing because there will always be businesses who want to drive traffic to their website and make sales by incentivising people to visit the site. Affiliate marketing will always be around because it’s such an easy and inexpensive way to do that.
Affiliate marketing is no longer something that “the other guy” does. It’s a huge part of marketing and it’s something that anyone can do. In the future, affiliate marketing is going to become a lot more sophisticated. It’ll be interesting to see how it evolves.
Another trend we will be seeing in the near future is going to be about diversifying and not relying on a single platform for all your affiliate income but instead to be able to diversify and have a number of different revenue streams to make sure you can make the most out of the opportunities that are out there.
Affiliate marketing will be less about pushing products and more about building relationships between brands and customers.
Is Affiliate Marketing Really Dead – Conclusion
Affiliate marketing is a great way to earn money online. Period. No doubts, no ifs, no buts. Affiliate marketing isn’t dead, it’s alive and kicking. I’ve been using affiliate marketing for over 3 years now and I’m still making good money from it.
But it’s true that you have to be very careful nowadays because the competition is so high. It takes a lot of hard work and dedication to become successful with affiliate marketing.
Also, look for creative ways to promote your affiliate offers. Focus on giving immense value to your reader first and then promote your offers that are relevant.