Affiliate marketing is a marketing strategy whereby you promote the products or services of other marketers and get paid whenever you make a sale. In the world wide web, starting an affiliate marketing business is very cost effective when compared to a brick and mortar business. A lot of people ask if it is possible to start affiliate marketing on a zero budget and the answer is yes. In this article, we’re going to see how this is possible in 7 simple steps.
1. Find your Niche
A niche is a subset of a larger market. For example, “weight loss” is a market while “weight loss training after pregnancy” is a niche. When choosing a niche, make sure that it meet the two criteria below:
i. It must be a niche where a lot of people are willing to buy products and services
ii. It must be a niche where you can out-compete your competitors
There are various techniques that can help you to discover a profitable niche. For example, you can use keyword research tools, online marketplaces and community sites to locate a profitable niche. Keyword research tools can help you to determine if people are really searching for information in your niche. Online market places show you products that are in demand and community sites are great places to find out problems people in your niche want to solve.
2. Do Keyword Research
Once you’ve discovered a profitable niche, you can use free keywords research tools to compile a list of keywords that are relevant to your niche. These keywords will then form the basis for all the numerous articles and backlinks you’ll be creating.
Doing keyword research the right way is very important if you want to get a lot of organic traffic and if you want your PPC (Pay Per Click) advertising to be successful.
3. Join an Affiliate Network for Free
This is where you can get products and services to sell. Commission Junction (cj.com), Amazon and Performics are good networks where you can find physical products. For digital products, ClickBank is a giant network for such product.
4. Choose Products Base on Your Niche
The products you choose must be relevant to your niche. They must be products that solve problems your target audience are facing.
Another thing to consider at this stage is the quality of the sales page. A product or service may be excellent but without a good sales page many potential customers won’t be buying.
While choosing a product, make sure that you choose quality products that you yourself will want to buy. Take a careful look at the sales page of any product you intend promoting. Does it sound convincing enough? Are the graphics captivating? Is the content interesting? In the end a good sales page should make you want to buy.
5. Sign up with Free-to-use Websites
These websites are where anyone can easily sign up with and start adding content. You don’t need to have any knowledge of HTML / CSS to create webpages in these sites. You can use these sites just like you use Microsoft word.
Popular free-to-use websites include Infobarrel, Squidoo, Hubpages, Triond and Xomba. These sites can serve as your own websites where you can promote your affiliate products.
6. Create Relevant Content
This is the stage where you add some content to your free-to-use website. You’ll also use content to attract traffic to your webpages. The articles, videos and audios you create must be relevant to your niche.
Don’t forget to put in your keywords at strategic positions in your article title, subtitle, beginning paragraph and a number of times throughout the body. This strategy is called on-page optimization and it can help you rank high in search engine result page.
7. Draw Targeted Traffic to your Website
At this stage you can make use of free traffic generation methods like
i. Forum Marketing
ii. Blog Guest Posting and Commenting
iii. Article Directories: Here, you write articles that are relevant to the products you’re promoting and submit them to article directories. Always remember to put your keywords at strategic points in your articles like the title, subtitles, etc You can get a comprehensive list of article directories, go to Google and search for something like “list of article directories.”
iv. Social Networking Sites
With the above free methods of traffic generation, you’ll soon be getting a lot of people visiting your webpages. So far as you choose the right niche, the right keywords and send relevant traffic to your free-to-use webpages, you’ll definitely start making sales now and then.
As you can see, if you try the method above you’ll see that it is possible to make money in affiliate marketing on a zero budget. But one thing you’ll find out is that it is not an easy task. This is the simple truth. You have to find your niche, do keyword research, write articles (possibly 100s), and apply most of the methods of traffic generation listed above. And you’ll have to do all these things by yourself. That’s why you need the patience of Job and the perseverance of a bulldog to succeed. However, you can greatly reduce the burden by outsourcing time-consuming tasks.