Theme – you don’t need a special theme for affiliate marketing, you probably just need a blog. I recommend StudioPress themes since that’s what Yoast, Matt Cutts (from Google), and I use. Matt Mullenweg, founder of WordPress also recommends them. One of the biggest mistakes I made was using a theme from Themeforest… since they’re built by independent developers who may stop making updates to their theme. This happened to me and I hear horror stories all the time about people having to switch themes and redesign their entire site. I’ve been using the same StudioPress theme (Outreach Pro) for 3 years. Their themes are lightweight (load fast), SEO-friendly via optimized code, secure, and they have a huge selection of plugins for the Genesis Framework and an awesome community in the Genesis WordPress Facebook Group. They include documentation for setting it up and will serve you for many, many years.
Longtime affiliate marketer and co-founder of Shareist Scott Jangro suspects that Gawker Media’s Amazon widgets are custom-built. “It looks like they’ve built a system allowing them to capture data that gives them full-circle reporting on what’s getting bought, through which page, and possibly even by user,” he told me. “Showing a count of purchased products for social proof is just one of the many things they can do with this data.”
The value proposition is a bit less direct in this case, but can still be very effective. Carolla provides a service to his audience in the form of free entertainment (the podcast) and then asks for support in order to pay the bills. In this case, the “ask” can be very effective since he’s just requesting his listeners to take a few seconds to get to Amazon through his affiliate link.
Hosting – I suggest joining the WordPress Hosting and WordPress Speed Up Facebook Group and see what real (unbiased) people are saying about hosting. SiteGround was #1 in multiple Facebook polls and #1 in most Facebook conversations (this one too). People who migrate usually see significant load time improvements especially if they’re currently using Godaddy/EIG. I use their semi-dedicated GoGeek plan which comes with 4x more server resources than regular shared hosting (#1 factor in WordPress Optimization Guide) and have <1s load times with 100% scores in GTmetrix/Pingdom. SiteGround also does free migrations.
I always add an HTML table of contents to posts to make sure they are long and structured. This has been a HUGE help for me (and my readers) and there are tons of benefits: better chance of getting “jump to links” in Google (see below), increased average time on page, decreased bounce rates, and it makes it easier for readers to navigate through your content.
From time to time, we may impose limits on Associates’ opportunity to earn Standard Program Fees or Special Program Fees. For the avoidance of doubt (and notwithstanding any time period), Amazon reserves the right to discontinue or modify all or part of any limitation at any time. For Program Fee Limitations, please see the Appendix (“Program Fee Limitations”).
4.5 In the event of termination, the following shall apply: (i) you shall forthwith stop all marketing and promotional activities for the Sites and all rights and licenses granted to you under this Agreement shall forthwith terminate; (ii) you shall return all confidential and/or proprietary information and cease all use of Our Marks and Our Materials; (iii) we shall be entitled to leave open, redirect or deactivate any Trackers, as we may elect in the exercise of our sole discretion; (iv) save as provided to the contrary in this Agreement, we shall pay you due and outstanding commissions as at the effective date of termination but subject to all our rights of deduction and set-off and shall not be liable to you for any other payments and/or claims whatsoever.
Check out AffiliateTip.com, a popular site about affiliate marketing run by industry guru Shawn Collins. The right rail of his site features a “Blogroll” that contains affiliate links to a number of third party sites. While some of these sites have blogs, the links generally lead (through an affiliate link tracker) to landing pages where visitors can sign up for a product:
MSE is a great example of an affiliate site that has become an authority site. It is not offering thin content and barely veiled “reviews” that are trying to sell something. Instead they are offering actual actionable advice and maintaining a strong code of ethics in the often dirty personal finance niche. They make their affiliate commissions by linking out in their posts and pages to affiliate products they have agreements with.
AFFILIATE PROGRAM AGREEMENT This Affiliate Program Agreement (the "Agreement") is made and effective the [DATE] BETWEEN: [YOUR COMPANY NAME] (the "Owner"), a corporation organized and existing under the laws of the [State/Province] of [STATE/PROVINCE], with its head office located at: [YOUR COMPLETE ADDRESS] AND: [RECIPIENT NAME] (the "Recipient"), a corporation organized and existing under the laws of the [State/Province] of [STATE/PROVINCE], with its head office located at: [COMPLETE ADDRESS] In consideration of the terms and covenants of this agreement, and other valuable consideration, the parties agree
You agree not to intentionally solicit for employment any of our employees or contractors during the term of this Agreement and for a period of twelve (12) months following the termination or expiration of this Agreement. Both you and we acknowledge that (i) any newspaper or other public solicitation not directed specifically to such person shall not be deemed to be a solicitation for purposes of this provision, and (ii) this provision is not intended to limit the mobility of either our employees or contractors.
In addition to the obligations set forth in Section 4 (FTC Endorsement Compliance), Affiliate shall comply with all applicable data protection laws regarding the transmission of data exported to or from the United States or the country in which Affiliate resides, including without limitation, the General Data Protection Regulation 2016/679 of European Parliament and of the Council of 27 April 2016 (the “GDPR”). Affiliate, as a controller under the GDPR, shall also implement appropriate technical measures to ensure a level of security appropriate to the risk, taking into account the nature, scope, context, and purpose of processing any personal data. Affiliate agrees to promptly assist FatCow in complying with any data subject rights request under the GDPR that FatCow may receive from any individuals referred to FatCow by Affiliate. Affiliate further agrees to promptly assist FatCow in complying with any duties to cooperate with supervisory authorities under the GDPR.
Notwithstanding the foregoing or anything to the contrary in this Agreement, if any of the requirements set forth in section 5(a)(i-iv) remain outstanding for six (6) months immediately following the close of a Customer Transaction, then your right to receive Commission arising from any and all Customer Transactions with the associated Customer will be forever forfeited (each, a “Forfeited Transaction”). We will have no obligation to pay you Commission associated with a Forfeited Transaction. Once you comply with all of the requirements in section 5(a)(i-iv), then you will be eligible to receive Commission on Customer Transactions, as long as these Customer Transactions do not involve the same Customer associated with a Forfeited Transaction.
You’ve got my curiosity piqued on EasyAzon. I saw the instructional video where you get to send people through the localised links, but provided you fill in the associate or tracking number for every country, example XX1 for Canada, XX2 for UK, so on and so forth. Does that mean, I’ll need to register myself manually for all the Amazon affiliate programmes across different countries, or can I generate these numbers all on EasyAzon?
That’s just a general understanding of what affiliate marketing is, but let’s see how we can build a legitimate business with it. This business model can be fully automated and generate us anywhere to a couple of hundred dollars a month, to upwards of half a million a month. And yes, some people are millionaires from this and only spend a couple of hours a week managing everything. It’s basically passive income.
These Associates Program policies (“Program Policies”) are incorporated by reference in the Associates Program Operating Agreement, and capitalized terms used in these Program Policies and not otherwise defined here will have the definitions provided in the Agreement. The rights and obligations of the parties under Sections 3 and 6 of the Associates Program Participation Requirements, Section 3 of the Associates Program IP License and Section 4(d) and 5 of the Associates Program Local Associates Policy will survive the termination of the Agreement. For the avoidance of doubt and without limitation for purposes of Section 6(a) of the Agreement, any violation of the Associates Program Participation Requirements, the Associates Program IP License, Section 1 of the Amazon Influencer Program Policy or Section 3 of the Associates Program Local Associates Policy will be deemed a material breach of the Agreement.
I’ve been using Amazon’s affiliate program for a little over two years and during that time I’ve had a lot of success with it. In fact, this income source was the second largest chunk of my total $150k+ 2010 income. If I hadn’t sold one of my larger Amazon focused sites last year for six figures this income source would have easily eclipsed $100,000 by now.