When most students of my age looked for part-time jobs in the city, I was questioning about online jobs. That’s when I was introduced to affiliate marketing.
If you are a person who wants to make a few bucks or even make a full-time income, this is the only guide you will need on affiliate marketing for students.
Affiliate Marketing? What does It Mean?
Affiliate marketing in simple terms is a way by which you get commissions based on the sales of a particular product that you promote.
There are people who are making thousands of dollars doing affiliate marketing. You can do it too, but keep in mind that it will take a lot of time for you to reach there.
Different Methods of Affiliate Marketing
Affiliate marketing is done in different ways by different people. Some people run Ads on Facebook or somewhere else about their affiliate product. I do not recommend this method since it can cost you a lot of money.
The other people, however, develop niche websites and then promote affiliate products through them. This is much better and even helps you in the long term of your business. But developing and expanding your website can take a bit of time.
Which method Should I Choose?
If you want to make some fast money by investing some cash upfront, you should check out this article where it says everything about affiliate marketing by running Facebook ads.
But if you want to develop a website and promote your affiliate products through them, stick to this page because I will be explaining everything about it.
Selecting your Niche
Before we start anything, The first and foremost thing we need to decide is the niche for your website.
Swimming, Dirt Bikes, Sailing, Travel, Blogging etc are all different Niches. There are hundreds of niches to choose from but the problem is competition.
If you search google for any of the above niches, You can see that there are literally thousands of websites writing content about them. This is a serious problem since it will take time for your blog to get noticed by Google and for you reaching on the front page of Google can take decades.
The first success lies when you choose a niche that has less competition and a fairly good number of searches or traffic. To find the amount of traffic for a particular niche, You can use this free tool called Google Trends
For Example: It would be better to select “Solo Travel” as a niche instead of just “Travel”.
Even if you do not find any low competitive niches, Just select one that you are really interested in.
After you choose a niche, We will need to create a website for it.
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Creating your Affiliate Marketing website
There are both free as well as paid ways in which you can create a website. I would highly recommend you go with the paid method.
Free Method :-
You can use WordPress.com to make a website. You are free to choose a domain name, however, it will contain .Wordpress.com ie, if the name of your website is ‘travel’ then the domain will be like www.travel.wordpress.com.
Since you are using free hosting, WordPress has the right to delete your website at any time. Try to avoid posting of Ad banners on the website, your site might get deleted.
But for a student or beginner who has just started affiliate marketing, this can be a good option.
Other alternatives include – Blogger, Wix, Squarespace etc.
Paid Method :-
This requires you to buy hosting from a hosting provider. The best place to buy cheap hosting would be from Hostinger. It’s just $0.80 per month.
Once you have bought a host. You need to Install WordPress.org in it. This is completely different from WordPress.com. You can read the differences between WordPress.org and WordPress.com from here.
Selecting Different Affiliate Products
Before you write an article on your site, You will need an affiliate product related to your niche, so that you can promote it through the articles.
There are thousands of affiliate programs present in each and every niche.
But for a student or a newbie, I would recommend Amazon associates. Amazon contains millions of products in each and every industry. and furthermore, they are trusted by many people.
But How do you promote these products?
Based on the Niche you selected, start writing articles on them. Make these articles informative, provide value and it should have at least a 1000 words. Then finally link the affiliate product related to the article at the end or somewhere else.
Let’s take an Example here
Suppose my niche is Travel. I would write an article like “10 Travel Gears that are absolutely necessary”. This article would include 10 items which are available on Amazon. So when someone buys a product from the link on my website, I would get a commission.
You could review any Product from Amazon and then link that product in your review article.
But the problem is these articles won’t get any traffic as of now. That’s because Google won’t even be knowing about your new website. As I said before, Developing a website takes time.
However, you can speed up this process by writing SEO optimised articles and here is a guide on how to do it.
By the time you wait for Google traffic to flow in, you could promote your articles on Social Media, Forums etc.
Other Affiliate Marketing Platforms
Now, Amazon is just one Affiliate Platform. There are thousands of others which provide way more commissions than Amazon.
Some of them are ClickBank, Commission Junction, ShareASale etc. They are legit platforms. But for beginners, It’s good to stick with Amazon.
I have written about the Top 5 Affiliate Marketing Platforms of 2019 here. Don’t forget to check it out.
Now, these platforms are generic and have different types of products within them. There are other affiliate programs which are more specific and are offered by different companies.
For Example, GetResponse is an Email Marketing Tool and it has its own Affiliate program. You just need to register within them.
You could also search for other affiliate programs in your niche too and sign up for them.
How to get Free Traffic to Your Affiliate Website?
There are a number of free ways to get traffic to your affiliate website. Some of the best ways are:-
- Social Media
- Quora and other Forums
When I first started blogging, my primary source of traffic was just social media, especially Instagram. I found a way to increase my reach through Instagram by which I got at least 5-10 website visits per day. Here is How I did it.
Currently, I do not depend on this traffic but for the first 2 to 3 months this is one of the best sources of traffic.
Many people complain about Quora and say that it doesn’t work. I had posted answers on Quora before and had received over 1.4k views for just one single answer. I was also able to get 27 conversions from that answer.
People complain because they do not know how to do it. Do you think answering by posting useless content and some shit links are going to get you views on Quora? NO.
Here’s how you do it.
Write at least 3-4 paragraphs. Clearly answer their question. While answering try adding your blog link(Not the affiliate link) somewhere between. Else you can add it as your signature at the last.
Trust me! It Works.
This is where most affiliate marketers and bloggers go wrong, they do not start a YouTube channel.
Whenever you post an article, try converting the same into a video. In the description of your video, link your article. So as you grow your YouTube channel, You grow your website too.
If you are shy to show your face on YouTube, then you needn’t, Make some animator video on VideoScribe and then give them a voice-over. That’s all that you need to do. Making videos on VideoScribe is so easy and there are lots of tutorial on the Internet if you want.
So that’s a wrap. I hope this article – Affiliate marketing for students gave you the idea of Affiliate marketing and how students can do it.
My advice for the students out there is that ‘Never Quit‘. Sometimes, getting your first few dollars online can take a lot of time and effort.