If only there were clear directions to your ideal affiliate products.
“Go left here, then go straight. Your perfect affiliate products will be on your right.”
That’s why we’re going to help you draw out your own personalized roadmap to the perfect affiliate products.
Are you looking to monetize your blog or website for the first time?
Or maybe you’ve already dabbled in affiliate marketing, but you’re still looking for the perfect products to feature.
We all know that using affiliate marketing on a blog or website is a fantastic way to supplement the revenue it receives. Many websites are created with the sole purpose of earning money through affiliate marketing, and some content creation teams are able to make thousands of dollars per month just through this method alone.
Success with an affiliate website, however, isn’t always a guarantee. One of the biggest challenges is knowing which affiliate products to promote on your site, thus gaining you the best revenue while making your readers happy.
So, how can you find affiliate products that match your website? How do you know if they’ll bring you a good revenue, or whether your readers will actually follow through and purchase these products?
We’ll walk you through the whole process of finding affiliate products that are worthwhile for you. Each of these steps includes actions for you to take.
Yes, this is going to be interactive—pull up a fresh Word document or get out your pen and paper!
By the end, you’ll have a full list of products to promote. You’ll know exactly what to do next. And you’ll finally have a clear direction for your affiliate marketing website.
Your Personalized Roadmap to Finding the Perfect Affiliate Products
1. Start with SEO
SEO (search engine optimization) is the first thing to consider when choosing your affiliate products. This will help your content reach the top of the search engine results pages for highly-searched terms. Thus, you’ll score more organic traffic and ultimately more commissions.
The first step is to find keywords using Google Adwords or your keyword research tool of choice. Type in terms related to your niche and types of affiliate products you may want to target (keep reading to learn how to do this well). You’l be given a list of keywords. Pick ones that have high “monthly search volume,” which means that many people are searching for these terms in Google every month.
After you’ve produced content for these keywords, the next step is to record and analyze what is and isn’t working for your site. What content is ranking for your chosen keywords? What isn’t ranking? What’s earning tons of precious backlinks for your website? Where are readers being converted into paying customers?
Our recommendation is to get yourself an SEO monitoring tool like Monitor Backlinks. There are plenty of good tools out there, but this is our go-to for beginning affiliates and SEO newbs. It’s designed to be super easy to use and it’s got a free 30-day trial you can take advantage of.
Monitor Backlinks also has the right combo of tool for most affiliates, namely: keyword rank tracking, organic traffic reporting, competitor SEO analysis and backlink monitoring.
And you’ll always know what’s going on with your keywords, which is a big deal for affiliate marketers:
That’s how you know which posts are visible and bringing in your organic traffic.
Feeling extra competitive? That Monitor Backlinks tool above will get you head and shoulders above your toughest competitors. You’ll discover brand new ways to outrank, outpace and outsell competitors thanks to Monitor Backlinks competitor research features.
Which of your chosen keywords are your competitors already ranking for? Where are they scoring backlinks? Which of their articles are being shared thousands of times across the internet? You can find out with a tool like this—then make their strategies your own.
2. Harmonize with Your Niche
So, what’s your website about?
This rather general question should have a very specific answer. If you already have an established website, you should know your niche very well. If, however, you’re starting an affiliate blog from scratch, you’ll have to choose a niche.
We’re not going to talk about choosing a niche too much here because that’s not the point of our post, but just remember this key point: A successful niche is narrowed down to a very specific audience and isn’t overrun by too much competition.
For example, instead of a general topic like “women’s fashion,” narrow it down to “fashion for professional women” or “luxury beauty products for women.”
Since I love lists, today’s post is going to be full of list-making. So let’s start with our first list to find affiliate products.
List #1: Types of products within my niche
Going back to our example above, let’s say your affiliate marketing website’s niche is “fashion for professional women.” With this niche, you have plenty of products to promote: business trousers, pencil skirts, blouses, accessories and the list goes on!
Just remember: Be careful not to stray! You don’t want to get off-topic, or else your readers will get bored. Focus on your specific niche, and create your list accordingly.
Take a minute and jot down some ideas.
Are you done?
Okay, let’s move on to step two.
3. Know Your Readers’ Problems and Solve Them
For both new and already-established websites, the readership is the lifeblood. If your readers become bored or disinterested in what you have to say, they’ll stop reading.
The key to keeping your readers’ interest is this: write about the problems they face, and give them solutions.
So it’s time for our next list.
List #2: Problems that my readers face
How can we construct this list?
If you know your subject well, you probably already have some insight into the minds of people who are likely to read your blog. However, don’t just rely on what you think your readers are thinking. (We all know how dangerous assuming is.)
It’s time to interact with your readership. Read the comments they post on your blog. You could even produce a short survey for your readers to fill out. Also, don’t forget to ask your content and social media teams for ideas, as they may have a good handle on the current trends.
Social media is a great place to get to know the questions or problems people have. Quora, a recently popular social media network, is based on the idea of asking questions and getting answers. Follow topics in your niche and see what people are asking!
Now that you have a list of problems from your readership, try comparing lists #1 and #2. Which products from list #1 can solve the problems on #2?
Now it’s time to start developing our most important list.
List #3: Potential affiliate products to promote
This is the list we’ll be referring back to from now on. We’ll start adding specific products that fit into your niche and solve the problems that your readers face.
Let’s see where we can get ideas to add to this list.
4. Get Ideas from the Competition
Guess what: to make that last list, we need to make another list!
List #4: Competing websites in my niche
You might not actually have to do any research if your site has been around for a while, as I’m sure you’re already aware of who your competition is. Either way, write those competitor names down.
It’s always good to have a handle on what your competition is doing. Right now we’re going to focus on how that helps you find affiliate products. Other affiliate websites in your niche should also be promoting products that will appeal to your readership. So, follow the links on their site and see what they’re promoting!
Notice if any of the products are promoted in more than one post. This likely means that they’ve found that particular product successful in affiliate marketing.
When you find affiliate products that match up with your site, add them to list #3, your potential affiliate products.
5. Check Ads for Relevant Products
While you’re on those competing affiliate websites in the same niche, pay attention to the AdSense ads that appear. What products are being promoted in that niche?
Ads appear all over the internet, but now it’s time to pay attention to what they’re promoting. If you use AdSense on your own site, you can even check out the products that are being promoted there. (Just remember not to click on the ads!)
Also, a relevant Google search will give you promoted results at the top which might help you add even more ideas.
As you find affiliate products you could promote on your site, add them to your list #3.
6. Research Popularity
Your list #3 of potential affiliate products is probably getting quite long. So, it’s time to narrow it down a bit.
Remember, it’s important to find affiliate products that not only fit your niche, but are actually appealing to your readers. Are people actually interested in this product?
Let’s find out.
Combining your Google searches with a search tool can help you see how many searches are being done on a particular keyword. For example, I use Keywords Everywhere, a browser add-on that lets you see the number of searches that particular keywords get.
For a more detailed investigation of internet trends with certain keywords or topics, check out Google Trends. You can type in a keyword and see charts that explain how much this keyword is searched for online. You can check trends for the past months, years or even the past few hours! You can also see these are location-specific results, which is handy if your readership is generally from a particular area.
Did you find affiliate products in your list that had bad results on the above tools? Cut them out!
7. Search Affiliate Networks
Now that we’ve narrowed down our list of potential affiliate products, it’s time to check out where we’ll be promoting them from. An affiliate marketing website can promote through two different ways: through an affiliate network (such as Clickbank, CJ Affiliate and Amazon Associates) or by working directly with companies.
When working with an affiliate network, you have plenty of different products available to promote. Also, you’ll find many of the same products from different brands.
To get more ideas for potential affiliate products (or to narrow down which brand or model you’ll promote specifically), try searching for your industry keywords within the affiliate marketing network. Then, see what products come up!
Remember, any new potential products that you add to your list should go through the same test of popularity that we did above. Some affiliate networks actually help you by showing metrics regarding product popularity in the search results.
8. Contact Potential Affiliate Partners
You probably have some products in list #3 that don’t show up in the affiliate network sites. Or perhaps you think you can earn a bigger commission by working directly with the company.
Either way, you may decide it’s time to go directly to the companies and work as an affiliate partner with them. This cuts out the middle-man (affiliate networks) and means you’ll probably get a bigger commission.
However, a word of caution: small sites won’t get attention from companies in regards to affiliate marketing. They need this relationship to be beneficial for them as well.
For this reason, establishing a direct affiliate marketing relationship really only makes sense for large affiliate websites that get a lot of traffic.
9. Be Assured of the Quality
One major mistake that many affiliate marketers make is not being sure of the quality of the product they’re promoting. This is dangerous, as it could lead to a mistrust of your recommendations, and thus a drop in readership.
So how do you know if a certain product is good quality? Use it!
Try promoting products that you or someone on your content team has personally used and enjoyed. Or, if you’re in a direct affiliate marketing relationship, ask the company for a sample.
But what if it’s not possible to test the product yourself? Then it’s time to find reviews.
Real online reviews from actual consumers will help you see the best and worst aspects of a product. I find that Amazon reviews tend to be very substantial, and you’ll see exactly what people liked or didn’t like about a certain product.
The bottom line is this: Don’t promote products that you aren’t sure of.
10. Promote More Than One Option
Our last step is relatively simple. Once you find an affiliate product that’s relevant to your site and appealing to your readership, go find more like it!
Even for the same type of product, you don’t have to promote one brand or one specific model. Give your readers options in different price ranges, or write product comparisons. List out the pros and cons of each product, and give readers the choice.
In this way, you’ve just expanded your list of affiliate products to promote, giving you endless opportunities to add revenue to your website!
Finding affiliate products to promote on your site isn’t always a simple task. However, by following the steps outlined above, you’ll come up with a good amount of products that fit into your niche and are appealing to your readers. Remember to keep testing the popularity, as internet trends are constantly changing.
As you adapt to the needs and wishes of your readership, you’ll see your website’s revenue constantly increase!