There are a lot of ways you can make money on the Internet today. The amount of cash you can make is of course all relative to your dedication and success, however there are plenty of ways you can go about monetizing that website of yours. It’s not easy, and usually you need to put in an insane amount of time in the beginning in order to even get a lift off to build from. What we need to understand is that many of the revenue streams are directly connected to the content we host and share, which makes the algorithm for success even more intricate. All of a sudden we are faced with the fact that we need a following in order to get the content off ground in the first place before we can create revenue from the streams we have setup as our core income channels.
The easy part of it all is choosing what way to monetize your content and the services you’ll supply. The hard bit comes when you try to increase the revenue for each of the monetization approaches you have chosen. You can do that by increasing your traffic, right! But that is not what this article is about. I want to focus on one particular revenue stream that a lot of social networking services have built into their core code.
Pinterest is a great example of this. They went for a long time without anyone knowing that they automatically incorporated affiliate links on the shared content that actually had product pages on the online stores they were affiliated with. It’s a clever business structure; however, when people found out, it was anything but happy smiles. They felt like they had been lied to, which put a little bit of a dent in the way Pinterest monetized their service. I have no idea whether or not they are still doing this. The rumor mill has probably blown this way out of proportion, but they have somewhat acknowledged that this was/is the way they monetize Pinterest.
So what is affiliate marketing in the first place, and how does it work? Well, it’s both easy and complex depending on how you look at it. StrikeIRON has put together an infographic that explains the intricacies of affiliate marketing, and it should be able to tell you exactly what you need to do in order to start earning money this way. This inforgraphic called Making Money With Affiliate Marketing is an ecosystem map of how everything works, and it is quite easy to follow.
To simply break it down, affiliate marketing is all about presenting a product from the seller that you have affiliated yourself with on your website, and in return, you get a link that automatically tells the seller that you brought the buyer to their site so you make a percentage of the sale. It couldn’t be more easy, but your success depends entirely on the number of buyers you manage to bring to their site and who ultimately buy something that you have promoted.
Each affiliate website that you sign up for has their own percentage that they payout. Sometimes it’s a standard percentage, and sometimes it’s based on the product you want to offer or following you have. In most cases, you can contact these affiliate websites and negotiate a better deal if you can show them that you will bring in more buyers than most of their affiliate members. It’s not easy, but with the right mindset and the right dedication, anything is possible. For anyone who is running a WordPress website for example, there are plenty of plugins that will allow you to easily add affiliate links into your posts and content. However, when you do, it’s always good to make sure you don’t blast your audience with offers making your website one big online mirror shop of other websites. The best way to go about this is to share only the good stuff, and do it when you are absolutely sure that the product you want to share has something to do with your following and what they are interested in.
The sky is the limit, and all you really need is a mind that is focused on bringing your audience the very best that you can offer in order to make them happy. People love free stuff, and a website that delivers content for free is a hot magnet for people who want to find the best and the greatest products out there. You can’t expect all of them to buy something, which in all fairness is absolutely how it should be. However, make sure you listen to your audience and let them know you care about them and their opinions, and you will find that affiliate marketing is really one of the best ways to monetize a growing service or website.
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