Website Or No Website…That’s The Question

Do you want to make money through the Internet but you don’t have enough experience or capital to start your own online business? You don’t have to worry, for a lot of online marketing options exist for you to start with. One of these options, and shall I say the best, is affiliate marketing.

Affiliate marketing provides first time online marketers like you the chance to market something online even without having your own product to sell. All you have to do is to sign up with an affiliate marketing program, which is usually owned by an online merchant or retailer, and start picking the products you want to promote. As an affiliate, you are paid by the merchant for your services on a commission basis, that is whenever you have directed a visitor to the merchant’s site and the visitor actually buys something.

Becoming an affiliate in an affiliate marketing program is often quick and easy, and for most affiliate programs, signing up is also free. But despite these and all the benefits being promised by affiliate programs, many people are still hesitant to get into affiliate marketing. One of the reasons why a lot of people remain hesitant is the lack of a website to start marketing his affiliate products with. This now leads us to the question of whether a website is required or necessary in affiliate marketing or not.

Many people say that one can do affiliate marketing even without a website to start with. Actually, one can really start promoting and marketing his affiliate products even without a website; and there exist a lot of ways on how this can be done. In fact, many affiliate marketing strategies that leads to success can exist without actually needing a website. Among these strategies are email marketing, offline promotions, writing e-books, writing ezines and engaging in online discussions like forums, chats, message boards and others.

*Email Marketing

Email marketing, or maintaining email lists, is actually the most popular affiliate marketing strategy that doesn’t require the affiliate to maintain a website. In this affiliate marketing strategy, what you basically do is maintain a list of the email ads of your prospective customers and provide them with articles that are relevant with the affiliate products and programs you are promoting. Articles that you provide your contacts with need not always be promotional, for many individuals find such types of email annoying. Rather, it would be better if you provide them with something informative and just add small text ads that link to your merchant’s site.

*Offline Promotion

There are many ways on how you can promote your affiliate products offline. Among the common medium used for such promotions are classified ads, brochures and flyers. Classified ads would generally work better compared to the other two because classified ads in periodicals often get a wider audience.

*Writing Free e-books

If you have a knack in writing, writing an e-book can be the best way for you to promote your affiliate products in the absence of an actual website. Just like in emails and newsletters, your readers would better appreciate your e-book if it is not too promotional but rather informative. Be sure, however, to make the contents of your e-books relative to the actual affiliate products you are promoting. And just like in email marketing, you can just place text ads or banners somewhere near the end of your e-book that links to the merchant’s site.

*Writing Free Ezines

Ezines are publications or articles that aim to inform individuals about a particular topic. If you don’t have a website and yet want to be an affiliate, you can well use ezines to promote your affiliate products or to insert links to your merchant’s site. If you have a website, your ezine article may actually work well as content for your site. But since you have no website, you can just submit your free ezine articles to various websites that hosts ezines, like goarticles.com, ezinearticles.com and others.

*Online discussions (Forums, Chats, Message Boards, etc.)

With or without a website, you just can’t ignore online discussions because they are great venues for marketing your affiliate products. In chats, forums, message boards and discussion boards with topics related to your products, you can easily find people who may be interested with the products you are promoting.

With all these strategies, it may appear that one really doesn’t need to have a website to start marketing his affiliate products and promoting his affiliate programs. Well, starting in an affiliate program without a website may be easy, but getting successful in affiliate marketing without a website is another thing. While one can actually gain enormous success in affiliate marketing even without a website, it is a rare instance that “newbies” like you can reach the same levels of success.

Having a website is not really a pre-requisite in entering into an affiliate program, unless otherwise the program owner would require you to have one. But while this is so, I would still recommend that you have for yourself a website, if not now, then maybe at a later time. Having a website creates a lot of advantages in affiliate marketing. For one, it provides you a place where you can creatively promote not only one of your affiliate products but all of your affiliate products. With a website, you can also advertise your affiliate products to a wider market.

Again, having a website is not a requirement in affiliate marketing. But with the advantages that a website can provide, I’d rather have one for myself and make affiliate marketing a lot easier for me.

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Promote Residual Affiliate Programs

Are you a webmaster in need of additional income? Or are you planning to set up an online business but you still don’t have any product to sell? If so, affiliate marketing may be the best solution for your problems. With affiliate marketing, you won’t need to worry about the products you have to sell. All you need to have is a website with sufficient contents that are related to the products of a certain online company offering affiliate programs. By becoming a member of the program, or by becoming an affiliate, you can start earning a certain amount of money right away!

Affiliate marketing is some sort of business relationship established between a merchant and his affiliates. In affiliate marketing, an affiliate agrees to direct some traffic to a merchant’s website. If that traffic is converted into some kind of action, like a visitor purchasing a product on the merchant’s website or a visitor becoming a lead for the company, the affiliate who directed the traffic will be compensated. Compensation may take the form of either a percentage sales commission for the sales generated or a fixed fee predetermined upon the application of the affiliate on the merchant’s affiliate program.

Promising a lot of benefits both for the merchants and the affiliates, affiliate marketing has become one of the most popular online marketing methods today. In fact, almost every merchant or retailer site today offers an affiliate program that any one can join into. Most retailers would entice people to become affiliates or members of their program by promising great benefits like large commissions, lifetime commissions, click through incomes and a lot of other benefits. But would all these affiliate programs bring off the same benefits?

Most affiliate programs would pay you, as an affiliate, a one-time commission for every sale or lead you brought to the merchant’s website. Commissions for this kind of affiliate programs are usually large, ranging from 15% to a high of about 60%. Other affiliate programs would pay you a fixed fee for every click through or traffic you send to the merchant’s site. Programs like this often pay a smaller fee for every click through, usually not getting any larger than half a dollar. The good thing about this kind of program, however, is that the visitor won’t have to purchase anything in order for the affiliate to get compensated.

Another type of affiliate program is the residual income affiliate program. Residual affiliate programs usually pay only a small percentage of sales commission for every sale directed by the affiliate to the merchant’s site. This commission often comes only in the range of 10% to 20% sales commission. Because of this, many people ignore residual affiliate program and would rather opt for the high paying one-time commission affiliate program. Are these people making a mistake, or are they making the right decision?

We can’t tell, for sure, if people are making a mistake by choosing a high paying one-time commission affiliate program. But we can definitely say that they are making a large mistake if they ignore residual affiliate programs. Residual affiliate programs would indeed pay at a lower rate, but merchants offering such kind of programs would generally pay you regular and ongoing commissions for a single affiliate initiated sale! That means, for the same effort you made in promoting a particular affiliate program, you get paid only once in a one-time commission program, and a regular and ongoing commission for a residual program!

So, are the benefits of promoting residual affiliate programs clearer to you now? Or are they still vague? If they are still vague, then let’s make them a bit clearer with this example.

Suppose there are two online merchants both offering web hosting services on their sites. The first merchant offers a one-time commission type of affiliate program that pays $80 for every single affiliate initiated sale. The second merchant also offers an affiliate program, but this time a residual affiliate program that pays only $10 for every single affiliate initiated sale. As an affiliate, we may get attracted at once at what the first merchant is offering, as $80 is definitely a lot larger than $10. But by thinking things over before actually getting into them, one may be able to see that the second merchant is offering us more opportunity to earn a larger amount of money.

Supposed you have directed traffic to the merchant and it converted into a sale, you’ll get paid once by the first merchant for the sale you have initiated. But with the second merchant, you’ll get paid monthly for as long as the customer you have referred to the merchant continues to avail of the web hosting service. That means that for the same effort of getting one customer to avail of the merchant’s service, you get paid monthly in residual affiliate programs while you only get paid once in a one-time commission type of affiliate programs.

So, are residual affiliate programs worth promoting? Definitely yes, because you virtually get more money from these types of affiliate programs in the long run! And would residual affiliate programs work best for you? Probably not, probably yes. It is not really for me to tell. But with the benefits that residual affiliate marketing can provide, it would really be unwise to ignore such programs.

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3 Steps to Find “Freebies” to Add to Your E-book

Those of us who regularly shop on line are familiar with the array of free gifts, free bonuses and just plain freebies that are offered to a visitor to a website to encourage them to buy. How could you collect, select and offer free gifts, which will be valued as much as the original merchandise that is being purchased, put these gifts together and add them to your E-book? There are just three steps to do that very thing. They are:

1.Identify your key words in each chapter of your E-book. Now, type those words into your favorite search engine. You are looking for free E-books on the same subject in more depth, by a greater expert than you are, or by someone who gives a new and fresh angle to the topic. Add a link to the free E-book in each chapter of your E-book.

2.Research the Internet for related free gifts. Now you are looking for things that you could give as free gifts in your E-book that will make it more appealing and give it more pass-along appeal to your readers. For example: If you are selling gardening supplies, find a planting guide on the web that can be downloaded and include that as a gift in your E-book.

3.Download the freebies. Visit the freebies pages on those web sites. Most sites have freebies and encourage you to distribute them.

Other key words I searched for are freebies, free E-books, and free reports and then gave the key word that I wanted the free stuff for. Like… “freebies for gardeners”.

Give your reader the vest that you can offer. Give them your book, additional reading material and free gifts to boot. Everybody loves a bargain!  LGT makes a great freebie!

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