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A Beginner’s Guide To Affiliate Marketing

It is truly amazing to see how many entrepreneurs and marketers have been able to generate income through affiliate marketing. What’s even more impressive, though, is that the industry seems only poised for continued growth in popularity over time. The estimated spending on affiliates will be $8 billion by 2022 — up from an astounding figure of just $5 million back in 2017!

Affiliate Marketing

Affiliate marketing is a performance-based marketing tactic in which an online retailer rewards websites with a commission for each customer referred via the website’s promotional activities. The affiliate will only get paid when their campaign results in a sale.

The 4 entities involved in the process of affiliate marketing are:

  • Affiliates – The promoters of a product or service
  • Product Creators – the creators of a product or service
  • Networks – A network managing an affiliate
  • Consumers – The end-users of a product or service

You don’t always need a network to become an affiliate, but the other three parties form the core of an exclusive affiliate program. To learn in-depth, about affiliate marketing and how it can help your business, click here.

Affiliate Marketing


An affiliate, also known as a publisher, can be an individual or company. Typically these are other bloggers operating in the industry of the product they’re creating and help promote it by making content such as blog posts, videos, or any form of media that will get people interested enough to go towards their page for more information about this service/product. They use search engines like Google Adwords to capture traffic so you may see them popping up on your screen with ads; some affiliates have even built lists through email marketing campaigns where all subscribers receive updates from new products being released right when they come out.

Merchants Or Product Creators

A merchant is typically the creator of the product or service. They offer revenue sharing and commissions to people who have a significant following on their brand. The merchants can be anyone from an entrepreneur with just one business under his hand up to established corporations like Amazon Associates Program who will pay affiliates for help getting them more customers!

Affiliate Networks

An affiliate network acts as an intermediary between the merchants and their affiliates. In some cases, a network is not necessary, but some companies choose to work with one for added security; they provide third-party checks that help bring down fraud rates. Some popular networks include ClickBank and ShareASale.

One of the great things about affiliate networks is that they help merchants deal with all those pesky little details like reporting and managing payments, so you can focus on what matters – growing your business.



The consumers or customers are the ones who make a transaction. They’re the guys that buy products and submit your affiliate’s form for them to gain their commission.

The Process Of Affiliate Marketing

Affiliates are paid whenever a visitor creates an action such as their first click, form submission, or sale. Affiliate marketing is mostly performance-based which means you only get paid if your visitor takes the initiative to take this next step on their own accord (versus just visiting your site).

Here are the most common affiliate marketing models:

Pay-Per-Click (PPC)

Here the affiliate gets paid for all clicks that are generated, whether a lead or sale happens. This is fairly uncommon because the risk falls squarely on the product creator. To have a better understanding of PPC.

Pay-Per-Lead (PPL)

The affiliate gets paid for every lead they create. This could be an online form submission, trial creation, or any pre-purchase. It’s a shared risk between the merchant and the affiliates because both parties are working towards getting more sales without taking all of them on themselves.

Pay-Per-Sale (PPS)

The affiliate gets paid for every sale they generated. This model is ideal because the risk falls on the affiliates, and not on the product creator.

Steps To Get Started With Affiliate Marketing

Affiliate marketing is a process that many people think of as just focusing on promoting other people’s or company’s products. However, there are several parts to the affiliate marketer’s work that need monitoring and upkeep for you to be successful at it. 

Following these simple steps will make your affiliate marketing journey quite smooth:

Select a Platform And a Niche

To be an affiliate, you need to influence. Establishing a website or blog that specializes in a niche is the best way to establish this cornerstone of success. Whether it has cats on its cover and talks about everything from their litter box habits to how they can help humans get over their grief after losing someone close, your audience will thrive because there’s something for everyone!

Affiliate marketers build audiences through blogs, newsletters, and even on YouTube or other social media channels by providing content tailored specifically for each group of people with similar interests and needs.

Affiliate target audience

Define Your Audience

It’s not just about making money – building an audience is a worthwhile endeavor for any online content creator. With more and more people using the internet to get their information, it can be hard getting your voice heard in all that noise. The best way to build an engaged following of followers? Establish who they are by researching competitors or monitoring traffic on social media channels like Twitter or Facebook.

Once you establish this group, grow and cultivate your loyal online audience through targeted content and emails. Give them a reason to read, engage with the content they see from you, and in turn purchase products that are recommended by you.

Sign Up – Affiliate Programs

The best way to get started with affiliate marketing is by signing up for an affiliate program like the Amazon Associates or HubSpot Affiliate Program. After signing up, you will get a unique link that can be embedded in your content and offers sponsorships that have no upfront cost! You might spend some money on outsourcing when it comes time to promote products (if not handled through social media), but these are variable costs depending on how much work you want to be done.

Select Products For Promotion

Choosing the right product to sell, working with the right company during affiliate deals; fostering relations that will lead to lifelong friendships-all these things should be considered core essentials of excelling at affiliate marketing. There are two important rules:

  • If you are not confident in the product and do not feel it will help people, don’t promote it.
  • Always recommend products based on your experience and in the context of what you’ve done unless they ask for advice about buying something specific that doesn’t match anything else on offer.

Create Unique Content  For Product Promotion

One of the best ways to get started with affiliate marketing is by creating stunning content that your target audience will easily connect and resonate with. Promote a roundup blog post about products you love or want others to know more about. Create comparison charts for two similar items, like what makes them different from each other? Interview people who are fans of these products to showcase opinions on both sides.

Don’t promote something if you haven’t tried it for yourself because that will only lead people astray in their search for new items they can trust!

Optimization And Tracking Of Campaign

Whenever your visitor clicks on your unique affiliate link, a cookie is inserted in their browser to track actions.

A qualified action could be defined as any transaction that the merchant can attribute back to you and reward accordingly.

Your affiliate marketing success is dependent on the promotion and understanding your audience. Track the content that has performed well to better understand what strategies will work for future campaigns, but be sure not to neglect all other aspects of SEO; you’ll never know which tactic may have been responsible for a spike in traffic!



It’s important to pay attention to the payout structure before joining an affiliate program and it depends on your goals. For some, this might be a monthly payment for all leads or sales you’ve made while others may prefer weekly payments depending on what they want from their efforts. The key is choosing one that suits your needs best so there are no surprises in the long run.

It’s important to understand the commission structure of a company or product creator before you make any purchases. Understanding that will affect which products you choose, how much time and resources you want to invest in promoting those products, and whether they’re for one-time payments or recurring commissions – depending on your goals.

One of the main concerns for affiliates is how much they expect to make. This can be determined by your niche or industry, as well as what kind of work you do. For example, if you invest a lot in ads like Adwords and Facebook marketing then maximizing revenue is important since it determines how many clicks each ad will receive on average (which will determine whether users buy products or not).

After careful consideration of these factors, one must decide where they want their business to go before investing time and money into becoming an affiliate marketer with limits on earning potential. 

Affiliate Marketing For Beginners

The landscape of online marketing is constantly evolving with new tactics being born and old ones dying off. Affiliate Marketing, which has been around for a while now, too needs to evolve to stay relevant.

One day people will be saying that SEO or email is dead but until then we need all the help we can get from these traditional mediums.

At the end of the day, becoming a successful affiliate marketer as a beginner requires you to nail down some fundamentals. Authenticity is hard to fake and it’s especially important when building your brand. The products should stem from something that interests you or have meaning behind them; otherwise promotional activities will be short-lived.

Affiliate marketing has evolved from a get-rich-quick scheme into something that requires you to build real trust with your audience. And while there are many tactics to scale promotion, the golden rule of affiliate marketing stays true: only promote products you love and treat your audience like humans. Build your brand, choose products that align with what you stand for as an individual, create authentic content, and soon enough – maybe even sooner than expected – you will be on the right track towards building a passive income stream!

If you are still unsure about using affiliate marketing for your business growth, let Digitally Global help you make this decision.

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