How to Make Money as an Affiliate Marketer

How to make money being an affiliate marketer is a question often asked and Internet marketers tend to get completely overwhelmed by the 101 things they need to do (or think they need to do) to be successful online.

That’s why getting an education is so important. When it comes to earning $100,000 or more online, it is easier to simply break it down as to what it takes to earn that sort of money as an affiliate marketer on the Internet.

How to make money as an affiliate marketerSo if your goal is to make $100,000 then how much do you need to sell? Here’s a handy chart (I’ve rounded up the numbers). As you know, there are many different product and services you can promote and sell. You can sell ebooks, webinars, seminars, e-classes, memberships etc, as well as also choosing which price point you charge.

Product Price PointYearly Sales to get $100,000Monthly Sales to get $100,000
$7.0014,2861,190
$27.003,704309
$47.002,128178
$97.001,03186
$197.0050843
$497.0020217

As you can see, earning $100,000 (around $8,500 per month) in Internet marketing is “doable” if you simply break it down to what needs to happen on a weekly basis. (For more on how to accomplish goals, see this post here.)

If you’ve got an initial product that sells for $7 that you use to build your customer list and then you introduce another product that up-sells for $197 on the back-end, you only need to sell 43 of those back-end products a month to break the $100,000 barrier. Well actually fewer, because you already made $7 on the initial sale.

Also understanding the different affiliate commission programs is important, as some will pay lifetime commissions, not just a one-time payment, so you can easily get paid over and over every month.

So how do you get visitors to your site?

You need them to want to read your blog posts or sales copy and how do you get them to do that can best be summed up in one sentence: Write about your own personal experiences in story form.That’s it! People love stories, especially true ones, that show you overcame an obstacle, solved a problem, created something positive and so forth.

So if you’re writing a blog post about how to increase traffic, use your own examples of what you did, how you did it, and the results. If you can flavor it with storytelling skills that keep your reader riveted, so much the better. 

And who better to show you how to tell a story than professional stand-up comics? These guys live and die by the story, they either get it right or they’re booed off the stage, and being ‘booed’ is not fun.

So what’s the steps to storytelling – according to comedians?

Be Brief (don’t ramble – get to the point)

  1. Give Details (the useful ones – don’t bog the story down with useless stuff)
  2. Use Story Twists (surprise is a wonderful thing)
  3. Work the Crowd (or in this case, your readers)
  4. Act out the Characters (difficult to do, but lending your own personality to your writing is extremely important)
  5. Practice (write often – the more you write, the better you’ll get)
  6. End on the Biggest Laugh (or point if you’re a blogger)

Turn Your Copy into a Conversation

Regardless of what you’re writing, a blog post, an article, a sales message, etc. Your copy should sound personal and relevant to the person reading it. You don’t want to sound like you’re writing a textbook to a class of students or a news article to the masses. Instead, your tone should be similar to a one on one conversation with a friend.

So how can you achieve this? With a little research and a healthy dose of imagination. This is one of those tricks that natural writers do without thinking about, and the rest of us can learn with just a little practice.

What you’re going to do is create a “persona” of your ideal audience member. For example, if you’re writing a sales letter, your persona is the customer. Hopefully, you have a good idea of who your customers are, and if not you might want to engage in some research to find out.

You can even turn your text into video, you can take any article and create an audio / video presentation or ‘sales letter’ and then post on your website or upload it to youtube and publish all over the internet. to see how exactly see my post What is Easy VSL

Target your audience

Choose one customer: Someone who has purchased your products in the past and reads all your stuff. This person might be real or imaginary, it doesn’t matter.

Now write a bio for your customer, answering these questions: Male or female? Age? Where does s/he live? Occupation? Likes? Dislikes? Desires? Goals?

You get the idea, you’re creating this person just as if they were real and sitting there in the room with you. How to make money as an affiliate marketerPicture them in your mind, or choose a photo off the Internet.

The Fun Part

Now for the fun part: Make friends with this customer. Imagine having a face-to-face chat about your latest product or the blog post you’re about to write.

  • What do you tell him or her?
  • What questions do they have?
  • Do they understand what you’re saying, or do they need clarification?

If you’re thinking you can’t do this, it simply means you’re out of practice.

All children have imaginary conversations in their heads, and you did as well. This is your chance to let your subconscious mind go to work, filling in the words your persona would say to you in a conversation. You’ll be surprised by what you discover because you’re opening the door to knowledge you didn’t even know you had.

Now then, once you’re got a good sense of who your persona is, go ahead and write that blog post or article or sales message directly to your persona, just as you would write a personal letter.

Connect with Them

Be sure to connect with them on an emotional as well as intellectual level. Your persona is the only one that matters when you are writing because it is just the two of you having an intimate conversation. 

And if all of this sounds terribly silly, don’t worry. Just try it. You’ll be pleasantly surprised by how much better your writing can become when you’re writing to that one specific persona. 

Next, we need to Create a Headline

Look at the difference between these two headlines:

  • Increase Your Website’s Traffic
  • Get At Least 1,000 More Visitors To Your Website Each and Every Day

How to make money as an affiliate marketerWhich one is a vague abstraction and which one can you sink your teeth into? Which one is more believable?

If the headline says you can increase traffic, your skepticism is high. But if it says you can increase your opt-in traffic by 33%, now we’re starting to believe and keep reading. If your headline isn’t promising something specific, you might want to rewrite it.

Authority

This last ingredient is “authority.” For many people, especially in the United States, they believe in an authority. What authority are you incorporating into your marketing message?

For example, if you’ve got a testimonial from a well-known person, are you putting it at or near the very top of your sales letters and videos? If not, you might want to place it where it can’t be missed and split test to see how much of an increase in sales it means for you.

BONUS: If your product and / or marketing message is controversial enough, unusual enough or crazy enough, you can get MASSIVE free publicity, too, just as with my post about; Marijuana Smuggler Seeks Job 

Bottom line: Even the strangest product can be sold to the right market. IF you’ve got the right message. Be sure your headline captures attention and uses specificity, backup your claim with third-party authority, and you can sell most anything.

Think outside the box

As an example of ‘out of the box thinking‘ how could you Profit from Bin Laden’s death?

Well, that’s exactly what one enterprising 23-year-old asked himself back in 2011 when he heard the news of Osama’s death. What did he do? He jumped onto the internet and set up a T-shirt shop online, selling t-shirts that said things like, “Obama GOT Osama,” and “Thank You Seal Team 6.

He set a website up that night, working until 3:30 in the morning. By the next evening, he had sold more than 10,000 items at $12 a piece that’s $120,000 gross in 24 hours – not bad for an evening’s work.  Don’t believe it? – check out this link.

how to make money online with a websiteEven if only $10,000 or $20,000 of that was profit (after he paid for the shirts to be made and shipped out), that’s still awesome money for one night’s work. And thats of course doesn’t include the sales he went on to make in the following days and weeks.

Whether you think this guy is brilliant or morbid it got me to thinking… how can I profit from what’s in the news?

“Believe me, I no longer look at CNN or the other news sites quite the same, and it gets my head spinning with ideas. How about you?

But the evening news isn’t the only place to find the latest trends, nor is it practical for most of us to race home and build a website to sell t-shirts. So how do you find what’s going to be hot next?

The internet

Well, the internet makes it easier than never before to keep your finger on the pulse of the latest and hottest trends. I’ve compiled a list below of websites to consult, and would recommend one word of caution: It could be easy to get overwhelmed by this sheer volume of information available. Thus, when you find a great idea, I suggest you immediately stop looking and begin optimizing it straight away.

There is a tremendous advantage to those who are first to hit the market with the information or product that consumers want, for one thing, it can be surprisingly easy to score high in the search engines.

For another, you can become part of the story, generating free publicity for your website and product. But if you bounce from one idea to the next without taking action, well, you know what will happen. Nothing. So look to your heart’s content, but when you find a winner, stop looking and start moving.

Here’s a list of places to search; Google Hot Trends – What’s hot on Google right now. Google Insights – Includes graphs, regional interest, comparisons, etc. Google Blog search – All the latest and most popular posts Google Zeitgesit – Based on the aggregation of billions of queries typed into Google Yahoo Buzz – What the world is searching for Bing Social – The hottest social topics Trendy!bing – Google trends meet Bing results Topsy – Real-time search for the social web

In Closing

Are you excited, thinking about all that you’re going to accomplish online?

Are you filled with the hope of building a big business and dreams of earning lots of cash? Do you daydream about how you will spend that cash? What about when you get a new idea, do you grin from ear to ear just thinking about how great it’s going to be?  If so, then I have one word for you. STOP.

Stop hoping, stop daydreaming, stop wishing and instead do this – START and get this free eBook

That’s it. Just start. Start building that business. Take the first step now. Not tomorrow, not next week but right now. Nothing ever gets accomplished from hoping, wishing and dreaming.

True, it makes you feel good, for a short time, yes it programs your subconscious mind but don’t, let an opportunity slip through your fingers.

Take action. Get that online education, Get started with Wealthy Affiliate and you can start for free right now and learn how to make money as an affiliate marketer.

How to Make Money as an Affiliate MarketerSo stop ‘hoping‘, start accomplishing and start Now! You may want to also read “How to be successful with Affiliate Marketing” Or possibly even read my post on how to get on page one of Google

If you have enjoyed this please feel free to share socially and leave a comment or ask questions below;

About Peter

An International Speaker, Writer and Internet Marketer, living in Shanghai, China, teaching Business / English at a Chinese University and making a difference to the world, bringing you great information and recommending awesome products that will make earning online while living internationally - a breeze. http://onlineaffiliatewealth.com

54 comments

  • Jiorphia Damier

    Great post Peter! Wow, I didn’t know you were living in overseas. I knew you traveled a lot, but didn’t know you actually resided out of the country. I get your real estate investor buyer list emails almost daily. I’ll bookmark this site and scope around.

  • John Rico

    Hi there! I haven’t heard of affiliate marketing before. But my first impression with it is that it is too complicated. Not until I have read your article, I already understood how it really works. By the way, can I try it even if I don’t have any previous experience in it? I wanted to do it because I heard that it can really give me a source of income. Thanks in advance for your response.

  • Thurman

    Wow what a fantastic site. I am new to affiliate marketing and this is exactly what i want to learn. After viewing this I think i will blow mine up. I bookmarked this site for future reference. Looks like a lot of good info. I am hving some difficulty getting my business to rank. I will be referencing this site a lot.

  • Viljoen

    I have a short story to tell about product price points. One of my websites are focused around selling mattresses online and the brand that I am promoting is very expensive.

    There was a day when ONE sale generated $300 for me. I almost fell of my chair because I never though this to be possible. I am now done promoting low priced products because higher priced ones do pay more.

    • Peter

      Hello Viljoen Thank you for your feedback and that is a good point. High value products targeted at the right audience is a great strategy. Thank you for sharing that point 🙂

  • Marcus

    I really like this way of breaking things down into the mathematics of what you need to do to achieve that level of success. I think I am going to do this kind of calculation when planning what new niche I am going to create a website about. Before I commit to it, I need to know how much work I will need to put in to make a good amount of profit. That way I will be able to see whether or not it is worthwhile.

    Have you managed to earn $100,000 in a year yet?

    • Peter

      Thank you Marcus appreciate the feedback. Pleased you liked the post and you got some value and yes I have been earning over $100,000 for a few years now. Wealthy Affiliate is truly a great place to get the education you need to achieve online success, 🙂

  • rufat

    Making money as an affiliate marketer is not easy and to be successful you need a proper education. Many people think that it’s just about adding a couple affiliate links while in reality it requires many skills, knowledge and experience. Of course, making $100.000 a year is very achievable but requires years of hard work. I think the key to success is through sticking to one direction and keep working until you achieve your goal. BTW, what is your main motivator being an affiliate marketer?

    • Peter

      Hello Rufat Totally agree about the years of hard work and yes $100,000 a year is really achievable however it’s unfortunate that many people think they can achieve this sort of income after a few weeks online. That’s why places like Wealthy Affiliate are such a great place to get the right online education that will really help people achieve their online dreams. Thanks for your comments. 🙂

  • Neil

    Hi Peter, this is an excellent site and a very well written article here on affiliate marketing, thanks so much for sharing. I started my Internet Marketing around 5 months ago with Wealthy Affiliate and I can honestly say it was the best decision I made, worth every penny or cent for those in the US. I particularly like the way you talk about interviewing someone and asking them their ‘story’ to build pictures in the readers mind, great article.

    • Peter

      Hello Neil Thanks for your comments and I am pleased you liked what you read. I totally agree Wealthy Affiliate is a great place to learn how to make a living online. You will be very pleased with you decision even more so when you start making money. 🙂

  • Aaron

    Peter,
    This is an incredible site! You break it down so well here! I did have a question regarding online affiliate marketing. What books would you most highly recommend for a beginner to read to plan success? I will make sure to read a few more posts on your site and follow you.
    Thanks for all of the information!

    -Aaron

    • Peter

      Hello Aaron. The training at Wealthy Affiliate is good enough and you will have plenty to read as you follow along with the lessons there, so that’s my recommendation for you. Thank you for your comments 😉

  • Jack

    Hi Peter

    thank you for this article it will help me a lot. The main question I have and I think the majority of new internet marketers is how to get ranked in google.

    I have been ranked in google chrome for all my pages but no other browsers, I then logged out of my google plus account and I wasn’t ranked at all !!

    I use Jaaxy i see you do as well, i pick keywords with under 100 QSR with some traffic not much, but am still not on the first page.

    Do you have any advice for me?

    Thank you

    • Peter

      Hi Jack My advice is to keep adding more content to your website with other posts using ‘low hanging fruit’ even though the numbers (in terms of traffic) may be small, eventually they will add up to a substantial number through the power of the compound effect of high ranking, low traffic volume sites. You may wish to see my post How to rank on page one and see how I manage to get so many pages ranking on page one of Google. Thanks for your feedback 🙂

  • Ron

    Awesome informational website about how to make money online. I am new to this industry of making money online but your website contains as much helpful information as any site I have read on the subject. I have bookmarked the site so that I can reference it later. You provided detailed tips and in-depth information that anyone wanting to make a success online business can use as a reference or educational tool.

    • Peter

      Thanks Ron appreciate the feedback and thank for you your kind comments too. Yes this is information I wish I had when I first started out and I know it is helpful and pleased you liked it. 🙂

  • Marvin

    Peter, excellent article, dude! Oftentimes people “can’t see the forest though the trees” and get all overwhelmed and confused about online marketing and how to be successful at it. This well-put post breaks down the process in simple, categorized, easy to see and understand increments, making the process seem, indeed, quite “doable”.

    Also, advising to “tell your own story” is cogent counsel. I had a sales mentor who always reminded me that, “Facts tell, but stories sell”.

    I hope your website and articles are well read by many people who are searching for answers re: online marketing for success, because you certainly do provide valuable advice here. Nice job, and keep it up!

    • Peter

      Hello Marvin Appreciate the comments, just telling my story ha ha… Yes too often, as you say people get overwhelmed by what they think is involved in affiliate marketing but really the process is rather simple if you look at it step by step. Thanks again for the feedback 🙂

  • JoyceKLeahy

    Hi Peter,

    what a great post! You make it sound so easy, yet as a reader, I really enjoyed the main points from the beginning to the end. It makes sense to commit and start. With your break-down of the earnings, the goal of 100k looks achievable.
    I enjoyed the story of the T shirt producer, I made and sold T shirts once, but not that many. I am looking at ‘selling’ in a different light and I really appreciate a lot of good advise in this post. I wrote a blog for 18 months before I realised I could turn this blog into an income generator, 350+ posts and that’s how I came to WA. “Focusing” is my biggest challenge, but I am working on it. I wish you well and thank you for sharing your knowledge.

    • Peter

      Hello Joyce Thank you for your comments. Yes there are plenty of examples of success out there and the message all seems to be the same ‘Commit and Start’. Pleased yo found WA and that its working for you as it does for thousands of people. It truly is a great program. Thank you again for your feedback 🙂

  • Shawn

    Hi, Peter!
    I really enjoyed your article. There is so much to learn to do this and make it work.
    I joined Wealthy Affiliate University about 3 and a half years ago and I love the place.
    Taking action is the name of the game and this place teaches you step by step how to do that.
    Thanks for the refreshing article on affiliate marketing, the same old stale ones get boring. 🙂
    How do you like living in China?

    Shawn>>

    • Peter

      Thanks Shawn China is an interesting place in fact I have a blog about it here during the current stock market crash, interesting read. Thanks for your comments and pleased you liked my post 🙂

  • NWTDennis

    Hello Peter … very professional site. I can see you’ve been around the block a few times. I think I’m suppose to limit my comments to this page. You have so much content on you site that is hard to do.

    What I found interesting is that many of you post titles look almost the same, but you have managed to make the content very different. You writing skills are very evident.

    Also your SERPs are doing quite well. As they say “content is king” in the SEO world. I’ve bookmarked your site for future reference. Hope you don’t mind.

    • Peter

      Hi Dennis Thank you so much for your comments and I am pleased you liked my posts. Yes content is important for visitor engagement and that’s what helps with SERP’s. Happy for have bookmarked my site 🙂

  • Mark

    Hi Peter – Another great post. The information you have supplied is really spot on.
    Recently my style of writing has begun to change to how you recommend it should be, I’ve still got a long way to go though.
    I agree entirely its easier to tell a story about yourself than it is to write facts. I recently did a post about how I started Ju-Jitsu and how my emotions were in turmoil. Not only did this bring back good memories the content of the page flowed .
    Great information – Thanks for sharing
    Mark

  • Chris

    I really like your idea and mindset of breaking things down into a weekly schedule. If you succeed in doing things this way you are a lot less likely to lose faith in the log run.
    Great article this – I was having one of those weeks when nothing seems to work online for me…maybe this will change things 🙂

    • Peter

      Hi Chris Appreciate your comments thanks for dropping by and commenting Please my post helped you cheers 🙂

  • John

    Hi Peter,

    Great story about the T-Shirt entrepreneur – just goes to show, if you can come up with a popular idea, you can make a lot of money from it.

    Thanks for the tips about sites on the net where I can find out hot topics – you never know I could be lucky enough to come up with a brilliant idea!

    I agree totally with your idea that the best type of writing is when it sounds like a natural conversation. I find that it really is the most engaging style when reading blogs or posts on websites.

    I also enjoyed the breakdown of the $100,000 a year scenarios. It shows just how that huge amount of income really is possible.

    I read about Wealthy Affiliate on one of your other pages, it sounds like it teaches a lot of skills I would need to be successful online, but do I need any prior experience or need to be really good at computers?

    Best wishes

    John

    • Peter

      Hello John the fact that you can read this post and leave a comment mens you have all the ‘skills’ to learn how to make money online via Wealthy Affiliate. ha ha So head over there right now and get started. 🙂

  • Francina

    Hi Peter. I enjoyed your article on how to write good content. As a newbie I struggle a lot deciding whether I am ready to publish or not. i will go over my article so many times and end up thinking it is not good enough to publish. This will help me a lot to check whether I am on the right track or not. Thank you for the helpful tips on your website. Much appreciated

  • Angela Zechinato

    I like the example of how to earn $100k a year in this post. It shows that affiliate marketing IS doable. I get so caught up in writing content for my site that I forget the potential we have. It excites me all over again and gets me thinking about new goals. Also so true about writing in personal tone for your readers. I love reading blog posts that tell stories and use actual examples because then I know that the writer is like me and not just some out of touch robot.

    Peter I sent for your e-book but don’t remember receiving it. May I request it again?

    Thank you again for a very well done piece.
    Angie

    • Hello Angela Thanks for your comments. Copy if the ebook is on its way to you. I appreciate you reading my posts and leaving comments. Thank you 🙂

  • Levi

    Favorited this website, hope to be referring to it in the near future! great article.

  • Sebastian

    I was looking for how to make money as an affiliate marketer. I would like to start out in the niche that I am absolutely passionate about: Surfing.
    I like your post but I don’t understand what you mean by creating the Headline. I thought that your keyword is simply the Headline or am I wrong?

    • Hello Sebastian, Good question. The Headline is the attention grabber you use to grab your readers attention and pull them into the content. The Keyword is a the “word” or words you are using to bring traffic to your post / page or site. In other words Keywords are the words that people are knowingly searching for online. Often it’s better to have your headline contain the keywords you are targeting but sometimes the headline is so compelling that it creates its own keyword ha ha. Hope that helps clarify it. 🙂

  • NemiraB

    Hi, thank you for information. It is a lot what to learn from your blogs. All the best, regards. Nemira.

  • Larry

    Peter, you make some very good points here. It is so important to focus on your goal, and direct your writing to a specific target. Your bullet points are good for this focus. Your call to action is on point. Knowledge without action is so much academia. Thank you for your thoughts,

    • Hi Larry thank you so much for your feedback. I appreciate you lengthy comment. I am pleased to help other become successful affiliate marketers. Cheers 🙂

  • Marith

    I have problems writing good blogs, mainly because I don’t write in my native language. I will take your advice and get myself an imaginary friend to write to. I think that will help a lot, so thanks for the tip. Also bookmarked your “how to write good content” post, and will spend some time studying and practise writing. Hopefully I can learn a lot from this. Thank you

  • dlansing

    Wow, great info Peter! You sounded like a pro indeed! Look forward for your next article too!

    Dlansing

  • Edmund

    My difficulty as an affiliate marketer is writing a good post. I will practice to write in a conversational and story like format to an imaginary friend like you taught us here. Thank you Peter, for sharing your wisdom.

  • Jeff

    Looks like you know your stuff! Looking forward to reading more articles from you.

    Thanks Peter!

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