How Affiliate Marketing Helps You Monetize Your Blog

When it’s time to monetize your blog, you have several options. Many bloggers use more than one form of monetization on their blog; having multiple types of income streams helps to contribute to both short-and long-term income goals. One of the easiest ways to monetize your blog is to use affiliate marketing.

Affiliate marketing is a marketing system whereby a publisher uses his or her platform to sell a good or service provided by an advertiser. However, with affiliate marketing, the relationship is more long term. A standard advertising agreement is often for a set amount of time or a specific number of clicks. An affiliate code is attached to a link which directs readers to the advertiser’s website.

The Affiliate Marketing Relationship
You want to build affiliate marketing relationships carefully. Many new affiliate marketers use sites like Commission Junction to sign up for relationships with as many merchants as they can find. However, not every merchant is going to be a perfect fit for your readers. You want to cultivate relationships that will benefit your audience over the long term.

The affiliate marketing relationship often gives the publisher more flexibility for how they market their advertisers. This flexibility allows you to earn more money over time, with little ongoing effort. On a popular blog, blog posts can continue to earn an income for many months or years after the original publication date. As the number of your posts grow, so does the amount of this passively earned income.

Ways to Monetize Your Blog with Affiliate Marketing
There are three popular ways to monetize your blog with affiliate marketing.

One of the most popular ways to monetize your blog with affiliate marketing is to review products that appeal to your readers. Let’s say you blog about cooking. Writing a blog review about a food processor, with an included affiliate link, gives your link great exposure. Because you are writing about something your readers can use, that post can continue to send traffic to your affiliate link for years to come.

Sponsored Posts
As a blogger, one of your talents is storytelling. When you can integrate a story into a light sales pitch for a particular product or company, that’s a sponsored post. As your popularity grows, companies may come to you directly for sponsored posts. However, you can craft your own sponsored posts using affiliate links.

Ads on Your Site
You can place ads on your website for merchants or specific products; when you upload the image, you can include your affiliate link. If you change out these ads every month, then you have a fresh set of links on a regular basis.

Is Affiliate Marketing Better for Me?
That’s a hard question to answer. I can tell you that it’s better for many bloggers. According to Commission Junction, affiliate marketing results in a 21% higher order value than other forms of advertising. If your readers are spending more money as a result of your work, then working on the commission model that most affiliates use is logical.

Affiliate marketing gives you more freedom than using an ad network. As you build a brand, it’s important to consider what companies your brand is associated with. If you’re using an ad network, you often have no control over what ads appear on your site. If you’re a vegan foodie, you wouldn’t want an ad for a beef company to pop up on your site. That kind of misstep might confuse your visitors; it certainly won’t be earning you any money. While some ad networks allow you to pick and choose what ads come up on your site, that can become very time-consuming.

Another option is to sell ad space. However, ad space clients will expect certain levels of performance. Those may be hard to guarantee, even if you have significant traffic. If you have valuable space on your blog, you can use it for an affiliate ad that you know will convert your readers.

Affiliate marketing may not be the only tool in your monetization arsenal. However, it should be included as one part of your monetization plan.


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